My House of Earth… and of Heart – Bene Vagienna, July 2015

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Photo By Paolo Ferreri

10 days. A few more, actually. 10 students, one teacher, one association and a farm building with its inhabitants. Many people stopping by, some who in the end decided to stay, some others who even returned. The building site of the workshop My House of Earth has been a crossroads, a melting pot, a continuous exchange and flow of positive energies and resolutions. In a stimulating intercultural atmosphere from which to draw a hundred teachings, first of all that, when there is a common purpose, one’s origins, one’s culture, one’s beliefs and one’s religion are not an obstacle, but a source of inspiration and of inner growth. If the guide then is a teacher of the caliber of Coenraad Rogmans, the recipe for staying comfortably together building something which is beautiful and useful is infallible.

They were almost two weeks of tropical heat, a climate hardly suitable for heavy work, but nobody was discouraged. With our hands, and our feet, in the soil, day after day, our small earthen (cob) house has taken shape, resting on thick walls and on passion and dedication, imparted and transmitted by Coenraad and perfectly assimilated by those who have sweated and worked hard by his side to achieve a shared goal: building not only a small cob structure, but also a solid and harmonious group, capable of sharing ten days rubbing elbows, far away from the rat race of daily life and immersed in the green Cuneo countryside.

Day after day the walls have been erected, the floor has been prepared by dancing on it (yes, dancing… imagine a dozen people who level out an earthen floor by dancing on it… because work can be fun and stimulating…) on the notes of “Tu vo’ fa l’Americano” (a remixed version, of course!), the inner niches and the details have been addressed with care and meticoulousness. Ten days were not sufficient to fully complete the task, the door still needs to be mounted, the plaster must be trimmed, but the students managed to go back to their homes and to their countries (we told you that we managed to bring to Bene Vagienna, to the countryside, a little of Egypt, of the United States, of Europe, South-Africa, Italy, and the Middle East, didn’t we?) mastering the technique and knowing that they have given their best, obtaining exceptional results.

We are proud of them.

We will remember and we want to thank all those who have contributed to the accomplishment of this wonderful project, while waiting for the next one, but also those who have contributed by stopping by to further enrich the special atmosphere which we breathed during the workshop “My House of Earth” (students, guests, visitors, friends calling, helpers… we may be forgetting somebody, but for us it was an immense pleasure to share with you these 10 days and a few more, in the company of wonderful and interesting people, from many points of view): Coenraad, Rosie, Patrick, Douja, Chris, Ames, Glenn, Lotfy, Ali, Cristina, Daniela, Davide, Michael, Lucio, Dani, Dodi, Samuele, Matteo, Jessica, Giulia, Sebastiano, Mario and Marina, Silvia, Silvio, Maiemi…

A special thanks to our special children: Laura, Lucia, Leandro, Martina, Vittoria, Mattia, Matilde, Juri, Diego, Pietro, Giacomo… without you it wouldn’t have been the same thing!

Now, enough with the rabbiting, let images speak.

Paolo is the official photographer of Co(o)ltura and has curated for us the report during the Open Day. His pictures are awesome and have perfectly captured the light and the spirit which has surrounded us during the entire workshop.

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Thanks to all our students who accompanied the guests to the discovery of their work, during the Open Day. And thanks to Rosie for her splendid performance, at the end of the day.

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We are collecting also all the pictures taken by us members of Cooltura, by the students, the guests who stopped by and, as they come in, we are going to publish them, here and on our Facebook page. Have you stopped by at Cascina Abbondanza during those days? Did you take any pictures? If you want, send them to us, we will be pleased to publish them!

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