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Noi Tv: Keane #loveproject biroldo

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Fabrizio Da Prato and Keane first presented the #loveproject to the public back in 2015 at Isola Santa in Garfagnana (article here)

It then became a central player in a conference held in Livorno on “the art of giving” and was presented to an audience of academics including professors from the University of Florence.

The same month it moved to the very heights of the commercial world as it was presented to the public at the EXPO Milan 2015 in the Slow Food Pavilion (article here


Noi TV program – Dido – Pane di patate, biroldo della Garfagnana e fagiolo rosso di Lucca
Puntata dedicata a tre presidi Slow Food della Lucchesìa. Ospiti Marco Del Pistoia, consigliere regionale Slow Food, Alessio Pedri e Elso Bellandi fiduciario e segretario Slow Food Garfagnana e Valle del Serchio.


This week part of that project – the Biroldo paintings of Keane, appeared on live TV thanks to the ever professional work of Abramo Rossi who filmed and edited a ten minute insert to the Noi TV program – Dido – Pane di patate, biroldo della Garfagnana e fagiolo rosso di Lucca

Biroldo – even the name is fascinating as it not really a local Italian word but a name that was probably brought down from the north of Europe as the Longobards expanded their territory into the south of Europe and founded the city of Barga over a thousand years ago. They brought with them their food which was heavily based on pigs



Keane ha individuando come soggetto-cifra il Biroldo della Garfagnana, salume dalle origini umili, prodotto con gli scarti del maiale nelle zone settentrionali della Toscana.

Le 100 fette di Biroldo ritratte dal vivo con attenzione lenticolare, appartengono ad un codice culturale vernacolare, ristretto a pochissime persone, concentrate in un’unica area geografica.

Il paradosso dell’accostamento tra i cuori d Fabrizio Da Prato e le fette di Biroldo consiste proprio nel duplice spiazzamento provocato dai differenti codici sociolinguistici: l’iconografia del cuore e le sue nobili funzioni semantiche prevedono una comprensione pressoché universale; al contrario l’inedita raffigurazione dell’umile Biroldo risulta accessibile solo ad un gruppo ristretto e detentore di una conoscenza esclusiva ancorché non elitaria.

Per chi non abbia mai visto l’insaccato, l’immagine raffigurata da Keane può evocare sezioni di marmi e intarsi oppure astruse anamorfosi barocche – Veronica Carpita  


The LOMBARDS or LANGOBARDS (Latin: Langobardī, Italian Longobardi), were a Germanic tribe who ruled Italy from 568 to 774. – I have been pondering the assertion that biroldo is of Nordic origin. It’s certainly true that all northern cultures include a pig’s blood pudding or blood sausage in their traditional winter diet, and in Europe “northern” almost always means derived from Scandinavian-Germanic origins. In this sense, the etymology of the word “biroldo” is obvious. While the linguistic construction “bl” is very rare in Latin, it is common in Germanic languages. When the Nordic-German Lombards brought their culinary traditions with them, they called the principal ingredient of the item in question “blood.” This root word is evident in almost all northern European languages: Old English blod from Proto-Germanic *blodam “blood” (cognates: Old Frisian blod, Old Saxon blôd, Old Norse bloð, Middle Dutch bloet, Dutch bloed, Old High German bluot, German Blut, Gothic bloþ), from “bhlo-to” perhaps meaning “to swell, gush, spurt.” This last reference, “bhlo-to,” is the most relevant, as it is very close to “biroldo” — and indeed, blood sausages do swell when cooked. The Latin-speakers of Tuscany adopted the sausage, but they wouldn’t have been able to pronounce its Nordic name. Hence the likely distortion of the syllable “bhlo” to “birol.” Somewhat analogous is the linguistic evolution of the Nordic word “blonden” to the Italian “bionda.” Most blond-haired Italians are, in fact, descendants of Nordic invaders who crossed the Alps after the 4th century A.D. – Frank Viviano



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