As in all other advanced Western economies, the Italian industrial sector is declining, decreasing the level of employment in industry and affecting the sector's contribution to the GDP. Industry employed 32.6 percent of the workforce in 1999, while contributing 30.4 percent to the GDP in 2000. However, manufacturing was the key to Italy's post-World War II economic boom and remains important. The steel industry in particular allowed the country to become one of the strongest economies in the world. All branches of the industrial sector grew very quickly, and Italian exports soared. Then, in the second half of the 1980s, the industrial sector went though a crisis, while the service sector ...view middle of the document...
D., decorative tiles had become widely used in Persia, Syria, Turkey and across North Africa. As transport and communication developed, tile usage and its penetration in other territories increased. Wars and territory take-overs caused this art to spread even faster.
The Romans introduced tile making in Western Europe as they occupied territories. The Low Countries of Northern Europe somehow acquired the technology from Persia, while the Moors brought African tiles with them when they invaded Iberia (Spain). It was aboard the ships of Spanish conquistadors that decorative clay tiles found their way to the New World, where they were used primarily to decorate the Churches of newly built missions.
By the end of the 12th century, use and manufacture of Ceramic Tiles had spread across Italy and Spain and into the rest of Europe. Till that time they were mainly used to decorate the floors of Cathedrals and Churches. The skill had eventually vanished from Europe in the 16th century following the reformation. But the decorative wall tile art had survived in Turkey and the Middle East and the Delft tiles art survived in Holland.
A form of tile making had also evolved among the natives of North and South America at some point. The first decorative tiles to appear in Colonial North America were imported from Northern Europe, mainly England the Brits having hijacked the technology from the Dutch. The tiles were too expensive for utilitarian purposes in the Colonies and were found almost exclusively in the homes of the wealthy.
Through the centuries, tile decoration was improved upon, as were methods of tile manufacture. For example, during the Islamic period, all methods of tile decoration were brought to perfection in Persia. Throughout the known world, in various countries and cities, Ceramic tile production and decoration reached great heights. The tile mosaics of Spain and Portugal, the floor tiles of Renaissance Italy, the faiences of Antwerp, the development of tile iconography in the Netherlands, and the Ceramic tiles of Germany are all prominent landmarks in the history of Ceramic tile.
In the early days, the tiles were hand-made, each tile was hand-formed and hand-painted, thus each was a work of art in its own right. Ceramic tile was used almost everywhere on walls, floors, ceilings, fireplaces, in murals, and as an exterior cladding on buildings.
Today Ceramic tile throughout the world is not hand-made or hand-painted for the most part. Automated manufacturing techniques are used and the human hand does not enter into the picture until it is time to install the tile. They are used in an almost infinite number of ways and you dont have to consider yourself wealthy to own them. In commercial buildings, where both beauty and durability are considerations, ceramic tiles will be found, particularly in lobby areas and restrooms.
In fact most modern houses throughout use Ceramic tiles for their bathrooms and kitchens and in...