UPR students develop ‘ArtesaníasICP’ app to feature local artisans
Students from the University of Puerto Rico (UPR) in Río Piedras developed an app called “ArtesaníasICP,” through which people from around the world can contact and buy from local artisans. The app, created with the support from the Institute of Puerto Rican Culture (ICP), is free to download and features a wide range of features.
Students Christian J. Matos-Rivera, Emmanuel Rivera-Colón, Carlos J. Díaz-Vargas and Lyxaira Glass-Rivera developed the app.
“This is a project that’s aligned with our work plan to continue providing accessibility to arts and culture, by incorporating technology,” said ICP Executive Director Carlos Ruiz-Cortés.
“With this application, people from anywhere in the world will be able to contact our artisans directly to purchase their pieces and coordinate the shipment,” he said. “It includes a directory with the contact information of the artisans including their name, the town of residence, the products they make, their email, telephone number and, when applicable, their social network.”
“The app is available for download in the Apple app store and the Google play store for free with the goal of introducing people to not only the culture, but to the amazing local artisans and all of the details behind their work,” Ruiz-Cortés further explained.
After the announcement, he said he believed “ArtesaníasICP” is one of the few apps to serve the artisan community with an organized list of all the registered crafters affiliated with the ICP.
UPR President Jorge Haddock was also present at the news conference to unveil the app and explained that it is the result of a course project in the Department of Computer Science.
“This shows just how much capacity, tenacity and drive our students have while also wishing to encourage the local economy and promote our culture,” Haddock said.
“There are about 2,996 artisans currently featured on the platform,” said Jessabet Vivas-Capó, director of the ICP’s Popular Arts Program.
“The experience doesn’t only benefit the artist, but it also promotes teacher projects and initiatives with a small biography. The ICP strives to advance the island’s educational movement,” Vivas-Capó added.
In short, the platform is a tool that enables the public to search for products of their liking and the artisans who can provide them.
“The availability makes it so that even those artisans without a digital presence can be searched for through the platform,” said Ruiz.