Giants and dragons enliven popular festivals where they are the main actors at least once a year, as each effigy has its specific feast day. They act out historical scenes and dance in the streets to the accompaniment of fanfares and costumed people. The crowd follows the procession, and many participants help in the preparations at different stages of the festival. The construction of a giant and its ongoing maintenance require months of work and know-how in many techniques given the range of materials used. Although these expressions are not threatened with immediate disappearance, they do suffer from a number of pressures, such as major changes to town centres and increasing tourism, leading to the detriment of the popular, spontaneous nature of the festival.
Inscribed in 2008 on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity (originally proclaimed in 2005)
© Text: UNESCO / Photo: Maison des Géants - J. Flament