Paola De Pietri’s study, entitled seccoumidofuoco, was carried out over the summer of 2013 after a series of visits to the production sites of the main industrial groups in the ceramics sector found within the communes of Fiorano, Sassuolo and Casalgrande. The research project was commissioned from Linea di Confine by the Town Council of Fiorano Modenese in order to complete the documentation gathered for the Manodopera project implemented by the Ceramic Museum at the Castle of Spezzano. The study was implemented with the collaboration of Confindustria Ceramica, which sponsored the production of the works.
Paola De Pietri produced a series of portraits, industrial interiors and photographs of clays and feldspars in a sequence designed to show the relationship between the work and skills of man and the raw materials used in industrial processes.
“Through operations reminiscent of alchemical processes,” commented Paola De Pietri “and thanks to the knowledge and skills handed down from our distant past, fragile materials like clays, sands, feldspars and kaolin are transformed into beautiful and resistant products like ‘natural’ marble, wood and stone, giving rise to the title, which as well as offering a synthesis of the ceramic production process, also sounds like an alchemical formula.”
“Clays, kaolin, sands, feldspars and other raw materials are the basis of the ‘recipes’ for ceramics,” comments the photographer Paola De Pietri. “Through operations reminiscent of alchemical processes and thanks to knowledge and techniques that come from our very distant past, crumbly materials are transformed into beautiful and resistant products that look like marble, stone and natural woods. Hence the title seccoumidofuoco (‘drywetfire’), which in addition to being a synthesis of the ceramic technique, sounds like an alchemical formula. The entire corpus of photographs by De Pietri is the result of a commission and will complete the documentation compiled since 2006 by ‘Manodopera’: a new multimedia section of the Museum of Ceramics in the Castle of Spezzano, Modena.
Rubiera, Linea di Confine Editore, 2016.
Format: 32 x 25 cm, pp. 48, card cover, text by Francesco Zanot, in Italian and English.