Like everywhere in the world, the Covid-19 pandemic has hit the Algerian economy hard.
From large companies to small businesses and artisans, no one has been spared by this unprecedented crisis. While some have almost fallen into need, others have been able to be more flexible by listening to the market and adapting to the situation.
In other words, the health crisis has prompted people experiencing financial difficulties to undertake initiatives that they would not otherwise have considered.
Borders closure and confinement have pushed citizens to change their consumption habits by favoring local products. More of them are also trying to buy online. These new habits, have allowed some interest revival for national craftsmanship, but also in the novelties brought by young designers artisans, who were able to take advantage of the situation by answering to consumer expectations.
Handicrafts in Algeria are very rich and varied, the nomenclature of craft activities and trades includes 339 craft activities for a number of 530,702 activities and 987,970 jobs. (Source: Ministry of Tourism, Handicrafts and Family Work).
The diversity of techniques, natural resources added to ancestral know-how explains this great artisanal variety, here are some field of activities:
Known throughout the world for its gastronomy and flavors, Algeria can boast of its artisans who delight us with high quality products such as artisanal jams and cheeses, olive oil, honey as well as a bunch of other consumer products, some of which have even been decorated in international competitions.
Algerian Mediterranean cuisine varies from region and from season to another. It offers a beautiful multi colored and tasty culinary palette. Relying heavily on the use of spices and aromatic herbs.
In Oran El Bahia, the “ÉPICE DEKKAK” store takes us around the world thanks to the scents of its spices. Working in this profession for over 50 years, this artisan embodies a know-how that has been passed down for generations.
The emblematic spice of the store, “RAS EL HANOUT” was presented to us in two varieties, one for the HARIRA MAGHRIBIA and another named COLOMBO for Chorba, Berkoukes and others dishes.
The store has a multitude of spices from different sources that will delight the greatest cooks such as the Curry, herbs and tasty mixtures of all kinds.
“Craftsmanship, a passion that allows you daily flourish”
The creation of jewelry in Algeria is a traditional art, with Maghreb and Berber influences.
Usually made of silver, the designs vary from region to another. Today, our artisans and jewelers offer a very beautiful creations where modernity merges with the traditional.
Among these artists, Mrs. TALEB Souhila, who shares with us her passion for handmade work.
LE MONDAIN, a family business creating handcrafted jewelry, based on semi-precious stones and noble materials such as copper and silver. Using an ancestral technique of weaving threads without glue or solder.
Inspired by nature, minerals and different cultures, from earrings to pendants, necklaces, rings or bracelets … LE MONDAIN offers you original creations with finesse.
The Algerian carpet made from sheep’s wool and woven by hand is a major element of our culture and heritage. Usually made by women in rural areas, there are different designs of traditional rugs across the country.
Each region has its own symbols and weaving techniques, which is the authenticity of the Algerian carpet.
Mrs HAMOUDA Noura, dean of weaving the Berber carpet and from the top of her 44 years of experience, explains the peculiarity of the Berber carpet HAMOUDA
“it is a short weaving carpet which is similar to a decor with shapes geometric. The decorative forms are diamonds, triangles and medallions”.
BERBERE HAMOUDA CARPET
BERBERE HAMOUDA CARPET
“Perhaps it is among the craftsmen that we must seek the most admirable proofs of the sagacity of the spirit, of his patience and of his resources”Denis Diderot
POTTERY & CERAMICS:
The Pottery is the centrepiece of our craftsmanship, which is an art whose origins date back to the Neolithic period, which has continued to develop responding to human needs.
Made initially to meet basic needs (cooking and food preservation), the pieces of pottery quickly evolved and established themselves as decorative elements.
This is also the case with ceramics, a highly prized art whose followers are many and each time impressed us with their creativity.
For Mr Kamel Ouled Ramoul, a ceramist born in Médéa with more than thirty years of experience; Ceramics is a means of highlighting our heritage, particularly through the shapes and patterns chosen.
Our artist reveals that although the process of working with clay still responds to ancestral reflexes and nowadays there are modern methods of having a refined handmade product.
Algeria has retained the know-how of artisanal tannery and is distinguished by the quality of its leather. As well as the remarkable work of its tanners who perpetuate a know-how of which they keep the secret.
Despite the glaring lack of resources, they face, our tanners in Metidja and other regions compete with the world’s greats and even boast of having a regular clientele in Europe.
Nowadays more and more women and men are choosing to opt for a healthier lifestyle.
Hence the trend of organic cosmetics, as the creator of the Ivoire brand explains to us:
« An Algerian brand of natural cosmetics created in 2020 by a pharmacist.
The principle of the brand is first of all Zero Waste, to reduce the consumption of plastic in everyday life; By offering products in zero plastic and zero waste packaging, offering solid alternatives to daily liquid products that we use :
- solid shampoo
- solid soap
The principle is also awareness of a more ethical and responsible consumption; by favouring natural products in order to protect not only health, but also the planet and the local economy »
“A craftsman sells you a part of his soul”
This pandemic reminded us how much humans can adapt, surpass themselves and above all show solidarity, regardless of the circumstances.
We thank all the artisans, who give us a part of themselves in their work and achievements. Support local production.