“My relationship with the garden is dictated by the real experience, the study, but mainly by doing.”.

For years we travelled around Europe, got to know several cities (big and small) and trained in them. But inside me and Damien there has always been this feeling of protest against a certain way of living the earth, but until then ours had been a battle only intellectual, never practical.

So we found this house near Carovigno, with which we immediately fell in love, and we put ourselves to the test. Enough talk, let’s do. Let’s see if we are able to do something and if in practice we can build a symbiotic relationship with nature. The thing I did immediately was to observe and understand what I have always felt since I was a child: not to erase, not to cut, not to eradicate everything that grew spontaneously.

So I gradually tried to establish a pseudo-natural contact, because nature is such a complex system, it does everything by itself and we can only move it, giving it cues and ingredients.

I realized that our campaign is a desert when Damien pointed something out to me (and I even blamed him for it!) One day when he came to visit me in the family campaign (towards Bitonto) he told me “Look, this is not the countryside, this is not nature! It is a cultivation of olive trees: a monoculture”. I dropped a veil, a veil that I have always had. I understood that the problem is that we are so used to think that it is natural, when in reality it is not.

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 Lamia Santolina,

Next to the house there is this ancient olive tree and we are very worried because from Salento is also coming to this area the bacterium that leads him to a fast drying process and it may be that the olive tree is already brooding and what we see is its last moment of life.

As you can see around the big trunk I let the wild fennel and the lentisco (born spontaneously) grow for specific reasons. The lentisco, which is a plant of the Mediterranean maquis, is a shrub that absolutely must be protected and let it invade the earth, because it attracts insects that feed on some parasites of the olive tree, such as the fly, is also a shelter for wild animals, and has surprising properties.

The fennel instead of being used to flavor olives, attracts several insects such as ladybugs and spiders that feed on aphids. 

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Cosimo Terlizzi guides to the visit in the garden,  Lamia Santolina, Carovigno 2020

That the mastic was born under the olive tree, made me happy because it made me think that there is still a memory of the earth and therefore, especially if for years it has not been poisoned, maybe some seeds are not dead, resists what was the original forest.

We are not only interested in the olive tree, we are interested in the whole. We are taken by the desire to find a balance with the earth, despite the olive tree industry and this dark shadow that haunts it: the xylella or CoDiRO. 

Certainly, there is a respect of the main crop. I then thought to insert at the base of the trunks the last serpillus which protects the tree and the ground, covers it. The idea that we are following is not to leave the earth uncovered because it is clear that the sun, during drought, burns all those organic elements that make its wealth.

In fact the last serpillus – like the santoreggia – are very interesting plants. Savory is a very powerful antibacterial, have the same properties and means that -second me – the earth, on a synergistic level, must work in the same way then release the antibiotic in a natural way. 

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Wild Tuna,  Lamia Santolina, Carovigno 2020

All the Lamia olive trees you will see have snake thyme at the base, besides protecting and making flowers for bees, it becomes a walkable carpet. In addition in  among the olive trees found on the islands, are circular flowerbeds, composed of plants of the Mediterranean maquis together with plants from a different area of the world.

What I’m telling you is my pragmatic approach that carries out research on the plants of the Mediterranean belt that are also found in South America, California, South Australia and South Africa and that unite these plants, they are all very resistant. 

There are plants such as Teucrium Marum Verum, which was used as a disinfectant for animals. Then the savory, which was used to calm insect bites, insects that I’m trying to get here in the garden. See the bushes here, they are made to attract the insects that we and the garden need. 

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Cosimo Terlizzi guides to the visit in the garden,  Lamia Santolina, Carovigno 2020

This for example is an African salvia, strongly adaptable to the weather and is used for rites of passage, to whiten teeth, but also as incense and chases away evil spirits, which are often nothing but bacteria and pesky insects. Right here there are a number of different varieties of sage, this is a crude sage  with fragrant and usable leaves. 

This is a Phillyrea, which raises a specific insect against the olive tree moth.  In the garden you will find, along with fruit trees, also plants that serve the ecosystem, not only useful to us. 

I sublimate the compositions looking for different plants, especially Mediterranean and medicinal. Inserting these islands among the olive trees, I know that their roots arrive here, under the medicinal plants, plants with antibacterial properties. Will they be able to help the olive trees themselves to resist the bacterium of desiccation? This is my utopia.

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Remo and the the secular olive tree, Lamia Santolina, Carovigno 2020

There are always a dog and a cat that keep everything under control, including the fauna, are Tao and Remo. This morning they brought us unfortunately a dead snake, yesterday a mouse. 

The idea is to be able to reconstitute a symbiotic relationship between everything: here the holm oak that is wrapped in juniper and underneath walks the santolina, then immediately after there is a lavender then thyme, which become a single block as in nature. My source of inspiration is the Mediterranean maquis, there the bushes, which seem to be a single block, are composed of a large variety of plants, native and endemic. They interpenetrate, so much so as to create a dense network of impenetrable branches, the varieties become confused, until they seem a single body. 

We also use clay pots to irrigate, which we bury next to the younger plants. Clay is a porous material that releases water very slowly and the roots come closer and take what they need.

Another thing I’m discovering this month, is this plant that was born spontaneously: the olivello, which is born on the roadside with its thorns and berries. It is not very well known and it is a pioneer plant, among the strongest and most important in the world, resistant to different climates that becomes a large thorny bush. It arrives before all other plants, is born where the sun beats and has an important property: it prepares the soil for other plants.

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Irrigation system with clay pots,  Lamia Santolina, Carovigno 2020

There are always a dog and a cat that keep everything under control, including the fauna, are Tao and Remo. This morning they brought us unfortunately a dead snake, yesterday a mouse. 

The idea is to be able to reconstitute a symbiotic relationship between everything: here the holm oak that is wrapped in juniper and underneath walks the santolina, then immediately after there is a lavender then thyme, which become a single block as in nature. My source of inspiration is the Mediterranean maquis, there the bushes, which seem to be a single block, are composed of a large variety of plants, native and endemic. They interpenetrate, so much so as to create a dense network of impenetrable branches, the varieties become confused, until they seem a single body. 

We also use clay pots to irrigate, which we bury next to the younger plants. Clay is a porous material that releases water very slowly and the roots come closer and take what they need.

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 Lamia Santolina, Carovigno 2020

The studio is made of hemp lime and the supporting structure is steel. The roof is made of cannizzo, natural insulation that creates a natural microclimate that comes by itself with the structure we created, also collects rainwater. To make this building we moved two olive trees that you see now planted on the sides and from the excavation of the foundations we recovered earth and stones. In this way we have given more land to the olive trees and we are gradually rebuilding the drywall.

The shape of the architecture of the studio takes the inclination of the curves that of the lamia (the house).This is the atelier where I create and work. Here are some works made by Giulia Coluccello, studentessa di  fashion design at IUAV in Venice and will be here for two-three months. Together with fashion, Giulia carries on an interest in audiovisual and one  study on appearance  rural, very interesting. Now we are doing a work where we use all the materials of the garden, and a reflection on pruning that becomes an interesting element for the nature of the  textile structure.

“The cue that Cosimo gave me was to create a costume or mask strongly linked to the ritual, to the bond with the earth. We started by pruning the plants of the santolina and the Mediterranean poodle and with the twine we started a process of transformation. With simple knots, the repetition of the gesture and the material is ennobled. We created an armor working directly on the trunk of the olive tree, consisting of a bodice of musk yarrow and millefiori. The rituality lies in the work, in the work of weaving and dressing the tree.”

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Il tavolo dello studio- atelier, Lamia Santolina, Carovigno 2020
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Giulia Coluccello, Lamia Santolina, Carovigno 2020
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Studio-atelier,  Lamia Santolina, Carovigno 2020

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On June 20, 2020 Cosimo Terlizzi’s solo exhibition entitled “Di sana pianta” at the Vettor Restaurant in Bari..

On the occasion of the night of the summer solstice, the artist Terlizzi with the chef patron of the restaurant Nicola Ricci thought of a four-handed tasting dinner between stories and flavors of the genius loci, properly understood as a natural and supernatural entity linked to the earth. The space of Vettor exhibits the work “Arida Raggiante” (photographic print on dibond 165X110) reflection on plant biodiversity.

Vettor Restaurant | ART PROJECT.

Vettor aims to be a cultural place, hence its name linked to the memory of Vettor Pisani (artist and architect, Bari 1935/Rome 2011). In the central room is on permanent display a work on paper related to the most intimate production of his research.

The restaurant’s bar cyclically hosts large-format works by artists called upon to exhibit a significant work of their production.

The project, curated by the collector and former gallery owner Michele Spinelli, is also usable from the outside and links the space inside the city.

The architectural design and the design of the furniture are by the architect Simone Esposito who after experiences in France and South America works mainly in Puglia.

INFO:

via Giuseppe Bozzi,73 – Bari

+080 8766966 – +39 351 050 5697

info@ristorantevettor.it

ristorantevettor.it

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