From Belarus, the United States and other countries … Casa Col Forno continues to offer a “refuge” for artists – Turin today

Perhaps the most cosmopolitan home is in the entire Val Pellece and has only briefly suffered the consequences of restrictions on movement between countries linked to the pandemic. The Stone Oven House (Casa Col Forno) in Rora has once again become a “refuge” for artists who come from all over the world and last year the creators – Claudia Picato and Sergey Palovin – found time to develop projects and initiatives involving the territory. in a Suspension There is only one exchange project with China.

He is an artist and she is an editor, they created their art residence in 2017 and the name they chose was inspired by the first house they set aside for hospitality which overlooks the main road to Rora (Via Maestra). But last year, the entire company was moved to “La Vernarea” on the farm where sculptor Roberto Terracini took refuge with his family during racial persecution against Jews. In the residence, artists are hosted, in an environment conducive to the expression of their creativity, and reciprocity with their works that they have submitted during their stay.

“Last year’s spring closing didn’t completely disturb our lives: in January our little girl was born, so we’ve already decided to make some time for ourselves,” Picato reveals. However, scheduled arrivals were skipped but with the summer there was a resumption of artistic life: “Even before the pandemic in general, all appointments were done outdoors because here there are outdoor spaces – Picato points out -. So there was no shortage of audiences last year, Even the October 24 event, which consisted of showcasing the collective work of the Weaverbirds, Federico Intrisano and Tarik Hanif, attracted more people than usual.”

However, arrivals from Russia and Belarus – where there are many connections between Picato and Palofen – are still prohibited. The absences were compensated for by local artists: “We started working more with those who live in the area and their contribution was important to making us known in the area,” explains Picato.

Thanks to a Belgian passport, Belarusian artist, Natalia Zaluznaya, was able to make it to the Stone Oven House in July, where through a work of art on the floor she provided her interpretation of the theme of ‘Refuge’, which she chose for this year’s residence. naturally. “We ask artists to work on this topic, and given the tense political situation in her country, Natalia represented a place where she feels protected.” In the garden behind the house, Zaluznaya placed a door that opens towards the mountains: “For nature can be a sanctuary” reflecting Picato.

Now she and Palovin are curated by Italian photographer Nicola Bertassi, they are preparing to host American artist and screenwriter Davis Alianiello, and are waiting to see if the project they have come up with with Alessandra Simeone to bring performance art to the territory will be. Funded with shows in Rora, Lucerna San Giovanni, Torre Belles and Barge. An exchange project with an art residence near Shanghai is still on standby: “They called us because they wanted to create a bridge for artists to Italy, but now everything is at a standstill because the exchange with that country is still very difficult to organize.” .

Earl Warner

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