BIOT - TOWN OF ARTS AND CRAFTS
POTTERY AND GLASSWARE
Biot is situated about 20 km from Cannes, in the department of Alpes-Maritimes of Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region.
Its story is closely associated with pottery and glass making, and the guilds which specialized for centuries in the making of jars and large storage containers for wines and foodstuffs.
From the 16th century to today, the craftsmakers of Biot have produced hundreds of thousands of jars and containers. Many thousands were exported throughout the Mediterranean, to the Americas, and to the coast of India over the years.
In the early 20th century, the pottery industry was in decline and the region’s commercial focus shifted to agriculture, vineyards, winemaking, and horticulture.
In 1970, Sophia Antipolis technopolis was created and its environs lie largely within the territory of Biot.
Since the 1970s, in and around the historic center of Biot, modern arts and crafts have been evolving: Léger, Peynet, and many others have established business operations in Biot. Such new enterprises have contributed to the revival of Biot’s reputation as a center for the creative arts and crafts.
With the enactment of the so-called Monod law (1956), the glasswares produced in Biot and, in particular, its famous ‘bubble glass’ were given special acknowledgement.
Indeed, in 1997, Biot was officially designated as a "City of Arts and Crafts" for its original glass and glasswares, symbolizing both the expertise of local craftsmakers and the venerated traditions of the town.
Thus, Biot became the town of noteworthy and world famous ‘Arts and Crafts’.
CELTIC-LIGURES, ROMANS AND KNIGHTS TEMPLAR
Many traces of Celtic-Ligurian presence can be found throughout Biot and dating to prehistoric times. In 154 BC, for example, the Ligurians were defeated by the Romans who settled on the present site of the old village.
In the year 1209, the Count of Provence donated the site to the Knights Templar. At about the same time, the leadership of the town designated Biot as the Place of the Arcades and Place of the Church.
Biot and its church were devastated in 1387. In 1470, when King René encouraged fifty families from the Val d'Oneille (currently the region between Genoa and Ventimiglia) to migrate to Biot, invest in the community, and restore its prosperity.
With the suppression of the Knights Templar, the territory of Biot was entrusted, under the aegis of the Knights of Malta (ca. 1530), the Hospital of St. John of Jerusalem, and the Bishop of Grasse – a joint power sharing arrangement that endured until the time of the French Revolution.
BIOT: MUSEUM OF HISTORY AND CERAMICS
The Museum of History and Ceramics is dedicated to the traditions of Biot.
In the museum one will find a collection jars from the 16th to the 19th centuries, indoor ornamental fountains from the 18th and 19th centuries, costumes, objects of trades and crafts, and photographs reminiscent of a long forgotten way of life.
The Museum of History and Ceramics includes a gallery of contemporary works and, in the former chapel of “White Penitents” of the 17th century, a temporary exhibition hall. The museum itself is the former Saint-Jacques Hospital.
The museum is open:
- 10:00am to 6:00pm every day, except Monday, on June 15th thru September 15th;
- 2:00pm to 6:00pm every day, except Mondays and Tuesdays, the rest of the year.
Address: 8 rue Saint-Sébastien, 06410 Biot
Phone: +33 4 93 65 54 54
MUSEUM OF FERNAND LEGER
The collection of the National Museum of Fernand Léger contains paintings, ceramics, and drawings of the avantgarde artist, his colorful Cubist compositions created during the 1950’s.
The Park of Fernand Léger was created on land owned by M. Léger. After his death, the creation of a museum and outdoor theater was initiated by his widow. She entrusted the project to Henry Fish and Andrew Svetchine.
In the garden, one will discover monumental works and mosaics by the artist. Mosaics covers also the facade of the museum building. One of them was created for the Velodrome stadium in Hanover.
The museum is open daily, except Tuesdays:
- 10:00am-6:00pm on May-October;
- 10:00am-5:00pm on November-April.
Closed on December 25th, January 1st, and May 1st.
Address : 316 chemin du Val de Pome, 06410 Biot
Phone: +33 4 92 91 50 30
FINE DINING IN BIOT:
RESTAURANT OF ARTISTS LES ARCADES
The restaurant specializes in Provencal traditional cuisine.
The oldest restaurant in Biot "les Arcades" is a major destination for tasting and enjoying traditional Provencal cuisine and viewing the works of famous artists.
The warm and friendly atmosphere of "les Arcades", the restaurant, has long been a place frequented visited by many artists...
To this day, "Les Arcades" keeps the memories of times gone bye alive. In its gallery and on its walls one can view many wonderful works of art.
Address: Place des Arcades, 06410 Biot
Phone: +33 4 93 65 01 04
BIOT: DESIGNATION «CITY OF ART AND HISTORY»
In 1997, Biot received the designation "City of Art and History" for its tradition of producing artistic glass and glasswares.
Many studio glassmakers, potters, jewelers, painters, decorators, and leather workers are active in the historic town center and in the immediate vicinity of Biot. One can visit them with or without appointment.
BUBBLE GLASS: GLASSWARE OF BIOT
Established in 1956, the Glassware of Biot were recognized for the invention of so-called ‘bubble glass’.
Today, company offers high quality table objects such as glasses, decanters, vases, pitchers, candlesticks in bubble glass of all colors: sand pink, lime, amethyst, blue chintz.
The Glassware of Biot enjoys designation as a “Living Heritage Company” (Entreprise du Patrimoine Vivant), meaning the recognition of a rare craft.
Glassware is open during the summer:
- 9:30am-8:00pm Mondays thru Saturdays;
- 10:30am-1:30pm and 2:30pm to 7:00pm on Sundays and public holidays.
Open during the winter months:
- 9:30am-6:30pm and 10:30am-1:30pm on Mondays thru Saturdays;
- 2:30pm-6:30pm on Sundays and holidays.
Address: 5, Chemin des Combes, 06410 Biot
Phone: +33 4 93 65 03 00
BIOT : RAPHAEL FARINELLI
Tableware, glasses, plates and bowls, lamps with bright colors.
The shop is open daily from 10:00am to 8:00pm.
The workshop is open:
- 10:00am-12:30pm and 1:00pm-7:00pm Mondays thru Saturdays.
Address: 465, Route de la Mer, 06410 Biot
Phone: +33 4 93 65 17 29
BIOT: FREDERIQUE VAN OVERSCHELD
During the summer months, open from 10:30am to 1:00pm and from 4:00pm to 9:00pm.
Open evenings on Thursdays and Saturdays from 6:00pm to 9:00pm.
During the winter months - from 11:00am to 7:00pm. Closed on Mondays.
Address: 16 Rue Saint Sebastian, 06410 Biot
Phone: +33 9 52 35 93 06
BIOT: PIERINI GLASSWARE
Antoine Pierini is a sculptor-glassmaker. His creations are made from blown glass, vibrating glass, in sober colors, marked by originality, and completed with the elegance of form.
Robert Pierini is one of the most famous of all French glassmakers: his works of contemporary blown glass, these pieces are notable for their unique elégance. Simplicity, transparency, with effects of mat and adorned with gold chlorid estaining, oxides, sulphates and nitrates. His works have been exhibited internationally. His creations are part of major collections around the world.
The Pierini gallery is open:
- 10:00am-12:30pm and 2:00pm-6:30pm.
Pierini's workshop is open to the public during Gallery hours.
Address: 9, Chemin du Plan-Route de la Mer, le vieu Moulin
Phone: +33 4 93 65 01 14
BIOT: "VAL DE POME" GLASSWARE
Daniel and Christophe Saba are the creators of fluted glass wares, lamps, vases, bottles, and figurine fishes.
"Val de Pome" Glassware offers free guided tours, by appointment, with a maximum of 25 persons per tour.
'Val de Pome" Glassware is open:
- 8:30am-6:30pm Monday thru Friday all year;
- 2:30pm-6:30pm on Saturday June thru September.
Address: 288, chemin du Val de Pome, Biot
Phone: +33 4 93 65 03 78
GLASSWARE BY DIDIER SABA
Didier Saba sculpts blown glass. He alters the classic forms, carves his own bottle caps.
Recognized as an innovative glassmaker, his pieces are exhibited worldwide: in Biot, Chicago, Miami, New York, Beirut, Dubai, Geneva.
For visits gallery is open:
- 7:00am-1:00pm Monday thru Friday.
Address: 27 bd d'Aguillon, Galerie les bains douches, 06600, Antibes
Phone: +33 4 93 65 52 99
BIOT: JEAN-PAUL VANLITH
Ceramist-potter Jean-Paul Van Lith uses precious metals in the enameling of hot glass. He makes sculptures from optical crystals.
Gallery is open to the public, hours are variable.
Address: Impasse San Sebastian, 06410 Biot
Phone: +33 4 93 65 13 47
JEWELERS OF BIOT
Claude Momiron - Creative jewelry
- 10:00am-12.30pm and 3:00pm-7:30pm July thru August.
During the winter months:
- 10:00am-12:30pm and 2:30pm-7:00pm. Closed on Mondays.
Address: 4, Rue des Bachettes, 06410 Biot
Maura Biamonti - Contemporary jewelry
Open to the public from 11:00am to 6:00pm.
Address: 1, Place des Arcades, 06410 Biot
Phone: +33 4 93 65 06 83
Advisable to check in advance for days and times. Artists may be absent due to external commitments or other reasons.