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    Behind the Scene : Enrico Tognoni

    Behind the Scene : Enrico Tognoni

    My journey starts in the valley of The Apuan Alps, an unspeakably beautiful landscape of rocky summits and pointed ridges that face the Mediterranean Sea. I was born in this area and clearly remember walking on these mountains with my family when I was a kid or looking at them from the beach during the summer wondering how that white snow was not melting with the torrid weather.

    Marble, a pristine white stone made of small sparkling crystals mixed with other complex mineral structures, formed with such striking and colorful stratification in some portions of these mountains, that the locals would name it with different terms depending on the colors and pattern.

    Every time that I go back now my feelings are a mix of old memories and strong curiosity about new possibilities of this material and the ways to transform it. A rediscovery of my roots with different eyes and experience.

    The visits to the quarry are always a strong inspirational moment for me. Rarely has the extraction of a material been so difficult and yet so precisely done. Each move has to be thoroughly thought out before any decisions are made. Every modification to its shape challenges its nature. 

    Although the methods of extraction have drastically changed over the centuries, the main process remains: large and small blocks of stone are cut in the quarry and hauled down on the plain to be further processed. The selection of the material is a key step in my design process and it is done through an old yet efficient method. Walking through the blocks, the surfaces are sprayed wet to restore the original vividness of the colorful pattern that is hidden beneath the coarse surface.

    When the design is conceived from a flat slab, the gallery is the place where I start my research. As radiographic, they show the essence and history of the mountain, deposited in layers of millions of years.

    Once the material has been selected, the stone workshop is the place where my creations take their first physical shape from the raw material. This is a very powerful moment in my process. Matter and ideas coalesce to create a profound sensorial experience. In this process, the relationship between material, form and craft has a crucial role.

    I approach this moment knowing that each piece will move through many hands during its process of creation, and that it will be infused with the energy coming from this collective effort.

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