Chinese Roof is a bench made from the recovery of exhausted casks.
Made by San Patrignano community under the supervision of Riva 1920.
CibicWorkshop Design by: Aldo Cibic with Tommaso Corà.
Barrique, la terza vita del legno
Recycling and recovery. Of casks and of people. This is what lies behind “Barrique: the third life of the wood”, the project conceived by San Patrignano, which involved the creation of designer objects using the wood of the barriques, casks capable of containing 230 litres.
The brilliant Maurizio Riva, with his brother Davide, came up with the idea when he visited the Community just under a year ago. Upon discovering the elegant barriques of the San Patrignano cellar, he understood immediately that they could be used by the young Community residents as a working material. A new way to save the casks from the dumping ground, putting them at the centre of a recycling idea as an ideal cornerstone of the philosophy of environmental sustainability embraced by the Community.
Riva’s and San Patrignano’s enthusiasm then spread to thirty of the best designers and architects of the world. These people were charmed by this unusual waste material and threw themselves into the project, conceiving and designing furnishings and furniture.
This help proved to provide additional valuable encouragement for the Community, whose young residents got involved with real enthusiasm and the mastery of the artisans of bygone times to create each single piece. These young men and women had to grapple with the singularity of every barrique, with their different measurements and the shape of every stave, such a vibrant material, which may only be used ten days after having opened the casks. Their curvature, a product of the heat of fire, and their wine colour, a lasting mark of the must that was left to ferment in the casks, ensure that it’s a living material, firstly requiring interpretation and then modelling. It is waste wood, yet it remains a noble material as it is French oak, a robust wood with an unmistakable colour. This project therefore enabled the young residents of San Patrignano to gain training, learning a trade whose skills are now falling by the wayside. Young men and women who are on the mend using barriques that live on in objects of design.
Aldo Cibic about the project.
A designer’s work is a fun one; one day, a friend (in this case) sends you an old stick of curved wood and asks you to make it into something interesting. It’s not any old piece of wood, but one that possesses a history with various implications: I’d like to point out that the raw material already has a soul of its own. What happens next is that you look at it and hope that an idea comes to you, which sparks a dignified reincarnation. To get a piece of curved wood, a type of workmanship is usually needed that involves investment, meaning that you can only make a piece if reproduced in a large number. In this case, the wood was already curved and it was in search of a new destiny. Those sticks of wood became an anatomically agreeable double bench, which, with the slant that I gave to the seats, made them resemble a Chinese house. After all, what I like is that it became an original and delicate piece of urban furniture in my eyes.
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