This post is also available in: Italian

The story and travels of a work of art are many. They may be found in museums or travelling exhibitions, be purchased by collectors or gifted to the fortunate few. But the story of the 4 recent woodcarvings of Toni Venzo, from Pove del Grappa, is unique.

This story starts a few years ago when a lady was forced to cut down a large cedar that she was very fond to have in her garden. She didn’t want to separate her family from the tree, so she ask Toni Venzo to imagined how to create four sculptures for her and her children, who now live in their own homes.

Many of us are tied to a particular tree that brings one back to childhood, or recall a garden where the first stirrings of life were experienced. A tree is alive, to watch, touch and smell it gives us emotions, the tree breathes and relates to us. Life reveals to us many changes. Eventually we leave the parental home, we may even change country, and we move far away from places where we had our roots. The tree, however, has roots that cannot be moved, especially if the tree that has grown with us is now very large.

Nevertheless, you can re-live your roots, you can bring a piece of the tree into your lives: it may be as a branch or a piece of her trunk. You can give the tree a rebirth, in the form of a sculpture.

And this is what happened to the cedar. This lady came to Toni Venzo and spoke of her love for the tree and for her children. Toni dreamt and formed a project where he has created for her a unique set of human sculptures: there are 4 that can be interconnected to become one, and when separated are still related. These four human figures have, carved into their torsos, a signal of a heartbeat. In this case the signal of the heart is transformed into a cardiogram and the statues have a common life. Together they have a greater force, but even when kept separate the heartbeat forever creates bonds between them.

The sensitivity of the sculptor does not stop with the form. Toni decided not to treat the wood and leave it without polish so that all family members can enjoy the same scent even at a distance. If he were to lacquer or polish the sculptures, even with natural elements, it would limit the expressive power of its smell and, therefore, take away one key feature that makes it different from all the other wood carvings. Toni Venzo feels the life in the wood and knows that it continues to move and give off its perfume for many years.

We will continue to follow these sculptures of Toni Venzo in their travels to the homes of the several family members and seek out their responsive emotions.


We talked about them also on a discovery. Click here to read it.


Gavin Tulloch

Scienziato e poeta. Ama la chimica, il vino, le donne e l’opera, ma non sappiamo in quale ordine


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