The work is based around graffiti, carvings and engravings of pennati in the rocks of the Apuan Alps – the mountain range between Barga and the sea.
The Pennati – Latin falx arboraria is the typical instrument still used by woodcutters in this area, characterised by a short handle, a wide blade 30/40 cm long with the tip curved forward.
They are considered to be of the same family as the sickles and billhooks, a family so ancient that they were found “specimens not only in the Iron Age but also in the Bronze Age.
Tools whose shape has remained unchanged for over three thousand years, the “pennata blade” represents the deadly weapon used by the Ligurians – Apuani in the epic battles against the Roman legions.
The sites are generally located up high and on rocks in a dominant and panoramic position and datable to precise chronological epochs overlapping with traces of a subsequent Christianisation (the addition of crosses)
One hypotheses for the use of the pennati image was maybe the worship of the Etruscan – Roman god of the woods, Selvans – Silvanus much revered in the Apuan area.
A further hypothesis is linked to the rituality of emancipation.
MANY MORE IMAGES from the upcoming PENNATI exhibition in the OXO collection Gallery in Barga Vecchia August 1st – August 15th — can be seen here
painter and photographer - started barganews.com, the first on line news site in Tuscany, Italy back in 1996