The waters that spring from the rocks of Monviso at the plateau Pian del Re and give birth to the Po River are the symbol of these valleys. A symbol for the vitality and the industriousness of their people who knew how to create cultivation, lines of communication, towns, churches and palazzos, all of them testimony of a savoir faire that even today belongs to the heritage of farmers, craftsmen and workers. This great resource of the territory, with its historic, economic and cultural value, merits being protected and expanded.
THE GREY GOLD: WHERE THE STONE IS HISTORY
The Stone of Luserna or Bagnolo Piemonte is classified as lamellar gneiss. Due to its characteristic light grey colour with a touch of green it is called grey gold. Worth the mention are also the yellow quartzite and the grey quartzite of Barge. You find them in the walls of the ancient palazzos and castles and in the pavement of the squares; they are the lose (slabs) for the roofs and with chisel and hammer they are processed into monuments, troughs and fountains. The traditional stories and secrets of the processing create the history and allow continuing to extract from the mountains the fundamental resource for thousands of workers, companies and municipalities. In the middle of the 19th century the introduction of certain infrastructures, such as roads and the extension of the railway Turin – Pinerolo up to Torre Pellice, launched a remarkable growth of the extracting activity and it expanded beyond the local demand. In the wake of World War II a revolution set in: mechanisation can no longer be stopped, although the traditional way to process the stone with manual tools is still the prevalent one.
MASTER CRAFTSMEN OF WOOD
The processing of wood has very ancient roots in the Saluzzo area and the talent of the craftsmen who work today in the valleys of Po, Bronda and Infernotto prove that. It is an art that has consolidated with time, a tradition that passed on from generation to generation until today, and that is able to evoke immediately the land and the artistic capability of its inhabitants. This is exactly what the term “typical” defines with its cultural and historic nuances and what the Regione Piemonte with its quality label for the products of the craft enterprises guarantees and protects. The label Piemonte Eccellenza Artigiana identifies and promotes a product in order to make the renowned quality recognizable.
MASTER CRAFTSMEN OF CERAMIC
Michelangelo Tallone lives and works in Paesana. The famous artist of ceramic can pride himself on many solo and collective exhibitions. Of all the techniques he uses he loves the Bucchero best. This Etruscan baking technique uses a slow burning of wood and creates chromatic effects that run from an opaque black to silver. Tallone is an artist with a treasure trove of experience that recalls God-knows-what country or maybe he is just inspired by the lunar images of Monviso. His sculptures are round, pointed, split or smooth forms and caves and crevices but always involving, referring to the power of nature, to life, like the eggs that open up and remain that way to symbolize the continuous search of the matter’s freedom. Matter is the mother and the stepmother, and tells the story of earth, water, air and fire, the story of man and universe: A story that is narrated by the clay the artist has moulded, like the spiritual maceration that accompanies its creation. Clay is the fascination and the obsession that binds a great artist like Michelangelo Tallone to the earth he kneads and processes with his own hands, to feel the urge to try one’s hands at the different expressions of this art.