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Arte Sella, where art does meet the man with nature

Trentino is a land of great landscapes and of a nature that is often made art: monumental trees and forests, peaks and rocks shaped by the time that change and come to life through the seasons. The intimate fusion between man and nature is also found in a fold of Valsugana, which from Trento to Bassano del Grappa and then in Padua: Arte Sella, in the valley, is a review of "contemporary art in nature" that Since the mid-80s called artists to work and deal directly with nature.

The artistic adventure. First within a structure, House Strobele, then outside, along a forest road on the south side of Mount Armentera about 3 miles, the project was born of ArteNatura that since 1996 there has included more than twenty works whose purpose was confronted "on par" with nature, that is, accepting and respecting its rules of biological birth, transformation, decay, death. The artistic project is not intended as a simple display of works of art, but also the crystallization of a creative process: the work is followed day by day in their development. In 2001 it was realized the "Cathedral Plant" by Giuliano Mauri, the result of a long gestation, built with more than three thousand intertwined branches in the form of a cathedral nave and two aisles, with eighty 12 m high columns more than 1000 square meters. Within each column is placed a plant hornbeam, that the intention of the artist, once grown is gradually taking the place of the supporting structure present, destined to rot and disappear. The Cathedral and quickly became the icon of the event thanks to the monumental size but also its perfect adherence to the spirit of the whole initiative: to celebrate the sacredness of nature and show modest but unique contribution of man.

Around this work at Malga Costa, for ten years, the Foundation, which he founded and now manages the various initiatives, decided to enclose an area dedicated more intensely in the production and display of new works, allowing a controlled use and maintenance of nearly 30 current works. This decision, although understandable, has partly changed their approach completely free from the beginning, and that instead the path ArteNatura continues to maintain and transmit. The experience of other similar sites, such as the Sacred Grove of Bomarzo, he tells us, however, that mass consumption and conservation are often found in irreconcilable opposition between them.

Not only sculpture. At the exhibition of the works are flanked with frequency concerts, theater and other events that have in recent years seen the participation of many artists of the first order, such as Marco Paolini, Moni Ovadia, Antonella Ruggiero, Mario Brunello (which became director of music programming of Art saddle), the Merchants Liquor and Gianmaria Testa. The uniqueness of the place, how it is able to affect our perception of nature, and the Vegetal Cathedral in particular, is also evidenced by the fact that some artists have wanted to involve her in their works, such as Marlene Kuntz and Elisa in two of their music albums.

Plants as a symbol. As the Vegetal Cathedral by Giuliano Mauri, many works of Arte Sella are built with plants, both living and dead, and I want to mention some of particular impact:

"Mood", by Bob Verschueren, made with sections of fir trunk with lateral branches, with great sensitivity touches our emotional affinity with the plant world.

"Vegetable Village", by Luc Schuiten, as well as "Gallery of willows", the German group Sanfte Structuren, and began work in progress, are composed of wooden structures on which is adapting the growth of several species of trees (hornbeam, birch, rowan the first, the second willow), many of which come from nurseries Pistoia. Similar to the Vegetal Cathedral, in these works at maturity will be the sole presence of the plants, while the supporting structures are destined to disappear.

"Untitled 169" made by Aeneas Wilder in larch overlapping dots "draw" in the air space of rarefied great concreteness, environment to live and not to be seen, in which the element is not simple vegetable material, but lives life of its own, made up of smells and sounds.

What always strikes in this artistic confrontation with the plant world is the perception of similarities and differences which expresses the otherness of man and, ultimately, its alienation from nature: the myth that feeling is symbolized by the continuous metamorphosis , desired and feared at the same time, Daphne pursued by Apollo, to escape nymph who agree to be turned into a laurel tree, sung by poets and sculptors such as Bernini and Canova and, today, even in the woods of Arte Sella.

In una valle, molte installazioni artistiche capaci di valorizzare montagne, piante e boschi