A Salvatori and Raffaele Salvoldi work of art in an Italian river
The latest collaboration between Salvatori and Raffaele Salvoldi sees the creation of extraordinary pieces of architecture in the Mastallone riverbed in Northern Italy
A magical fusion of stone and water by Raffaele Salvoldi
We are delighted to share the story of our latest co-creation with emerging artist Raffaele Salvoldi. Following on from the fascinating installations presented in April during Milan Design Week, we are once again back with another project centred around sustainability. This time, however, the venue is a rather more unusual one, as we find ourselves in the Mastallone riverbed in the locality known as “lama dei Carabinieri” in Aniceti in the Northern Italian province of Vecelli.
The Salvatori spirit of sustainability meets the artworks of Raffaele Salvoldi
The works of Raffaele Salvoldi are typically imposing examples of architecture, each different from the other and made of thousands of small marble bricks cut from leftover stone.
“It’s very special for me to see this project in the midst of nature that we’ve done with Raffaele” explains CEO Gabriele Salvatori. “The collaboration with Raffaele is completely in keeping with our philosophy of promoting designers, artists and works that place the focus on human beings. Through the artists’ talent and ingenuity, their works become a way to raise awareness of the importance of safeguarding our planet, the most precious thing we have. The idea is to restore dignity to every single fragment of raw material by adopting a parsimonious approach and highlighting the idea that “top grade” and “second grade” materials don’t exist. Instead, it’s up to us to be smart and use each element that nature provides in the best way possible.”
Our understanding of the responsibility that comes with working with a rare and precious material has long been the driving force that has seen us develop production processes and innovative designs that promote sustainability and minimise waste.
And so, the pieces used by Raffaele in this latest project are the very same ones that were part of his dazzling creations in Milan, now finding themselves in a river location. This is part of a concept that sees art as something transient, rather than as a physical object that can be possessed and as such, his work is not just about the temporary nature of its existent, but also the performance-related aspect, with the public able to witness his creations in the making.
A natural paradise
The location chosen by Raffaele is the Valsesia area where he was born and, to be more precise, the Mastallone Valley, a popular nature and swimming spot with the locals. With its crystalline water and natural beach protected by rocks, it is a true corner of paradise.
The artist’s idea was to create an installation in Bianco Carrara marble on the riverbed, with the first with 30- 40 cm covered by water. Like the work he constructed in the Salvatori boutique in Milan, this too is comprised of a number of elements, each with a height ranging from 3 to 5 metres.
The timeless synergy of water and stone
Made entirely from Bianco Carrara marble, the pieces emerge from the beautiful clear waters of the Mastallone River in what could be described as the perfect expression of stone not only as a natural element in its own right, but also as a building block at the service of humankind.
“Through this new collaboration with Salvatori, I am exploring a new scenario, based on two ancient elements in constant dialogue with one another: natural stone and water. This time, instead of being in an interior space, my work emerges in a natural location and one which is very dear to me as it is the valley I grew up in and love. It will be almost a kind of ritual, a gentle, slow interaction in the midst of forests and the water at the foot of the mountains.” – Raffaele Salvoldi.
His artwork examines the relationship between stone and water, two rudimentary elements that combine in a form of alchemy. But it is the harmonious juxtaposition of a manmade structure and a natural context that makes this installation particularly special, whilst also demonstrating that Raffaele’s artworks strike the right note whether indoors or out.
In keeping with Raffaele Salvoldi’s vision of sustainable, temporary art, his installation will be on display for a limited time only.
We would like to take this opportunity to thank the Varello local council and the Piedmont regional office for helping bring this ambitious project to fruition and one of the area’s most renowned producers, Fattoria Cerini, who was instrumental in helping with the logistics of transporting material to the location.