Leonardo – Florentine Mosaic




Basically I have the ambition to transform what in nature is raw, cold, hard into something that for people is emotion, warmth, softness and therefore give birth to a quite special process.


I believe before your hands there is your thinking. The fact that something makes you think and then you go to touch it, you can’t ignore that. What works in reverse for me is that when you use your hands you realize the possibility or the fantasy that there is within this movement, however, that you can be either a magician or a great craftsman, however, you could be a magician or an artisan and you’ll never be able to grasp what your hands can do, the fact they have the ability to change things or create things you’ve not even aware enough and this is their great strength because you can think whatever you want but if you are unable to realize none of what you thought, what’s the point?. This to me is the great capacity of the hands.


There are a few things that I think are important. First is the sensitivity. Each of us is getting used to a system, a society a which is far away from reality, humanity and sensitivity, and why is that so? Because everything is computerized, squared, and outlined. The first thing about this craft is to be able to discover, somehow you need to be like a child when you cut the stones to see the colors and be able to turn something that until yesterday was just blank, dirty, heavy, and today is something that makes you think. Each of us needs some sort of stimulation, regardless of the job we do, otherwise you become barbarized. Here you have a world so wide and alive (without mentioning the energy of the stones) the colors and materials fills your mind with new and valuable things, and today’s difficult to find the same richness elsewhere, almost everything is monotonous.

If you’re skilled, with this mastery you can explore the matter, the drawings, the thinking and so on, the possibilities are endless. Still today, when I cut through a stone-block, I have no clue about what’s inside, even thou I know where’s it from, you see? You have this unknown side which makes you wonder, stone gives you something new every day. Of course there is spirit of sacrifice like in everything else you do, this is not a job more difficult than the others, of course it takes a lot of patience, I mean, it takes a good character to spend 8/9 hours with your head bowed. The first thing teenager have to understand is that the computer is hogwash, it’s bullshit! It is only a useful tool, but never start from there, never, never think of creating something, because otherwise you’re a fool! For instance, think about communication. Today’s communication isn’t about looking in each other’s eyes, we talk through this damn digits and we can’t understand each other any more, there’s no dialogue, no energy to be transmitted.

Obviously it’s our fault, not theirs [teenager], we addressed them this way including the institutions that never focus on something important. People who come to see me are curious, like the teacher who brings me its pupils, that should be normal, as it is normal that I waste time with them because ultimately they represent the future, but there should be a system behind this all and there isn’t. You see, when I am in front of the kids immediately understand those who are interested and those who play with the phone. Every now and then some guy looks at me like I am an extra-terrestrial and wants to understand, that’s one of those that should be saved. It takes me little time to grasp who are the ones I can teach to, in a way it is a natural selection. It used to be different, kids were going to workshops and those who stayed became good at it, today this is impossible. I think it will be very hard this craft will survive, there are no schools and institutions do not care.

And I’ll tell you something else, from time to time they call me to give lessons, and the first thing they talk about is the money, they don’t even ask what I would like to do, they just say “We’ll give you a hundred euro” , but no! no! this is really not the way to deal with it, you do not understand anything! First of all, I have not asked for anything, but now they are all accustomed to thinking in terms of money, and a craftsman like me do not give a damn about it! Mine is a passion, not just a job, first of all there is passion, otherwise why would you do it? To go into the woods to look for the right piece, to the bottom of rivers to look for the best stones. Yes, collectors from all over the world appreciate my work and it makes me very happy of course, these are great satisfaction, but in the end of the day is something more internal than external…


Last Sunday, if you were passing by the workshop early in the morning, you would have noticed a small light lit on the back of the shop, why? Because at 6am I had an idea and I couldn’t take it any more so I had to get here and try to understand. So I start developing an idea, these are things that come and go quickly, you have to catch them on the fly. I mean, this is a joy, it fills you up .

I believe that people need to achieve that kind of awareness, they really need it, we are now to a vacuum point, so I think it’s obvious we have to come back. The human being in reality is not empty, but the fashion, the society, the mobile phones, the new shoes work for a limited time. The difference between beauty charm is that the former is temporary and the latter remains forever. You can be as beautiful as you want but in ten years you’ll be equal to anyone else, a charming woman even at fifty is more beautiful than a little girl, with her femininity it’s all about what she has inside. And the Man has this extreme necessity, we all come from the same place, even in the Middle Ages they did, they lived in filthy cities and yet look what they did, the clothes they wore, it was all wonderful. This is the human being. The f***g mobile phone era will come to an end and everything will be restored and we will go back into the woods to look for the leaves, these are all things that we already knew but we have magically forgotten. We can not help it, this is the way we are.


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