Cuneo (wedge), 2004
Installation with 7-minute projected digital slidedeck (looped), drawing with quarry dust on glass 48” x 36”, trestles, floor drawing with quarry dust, hand-painted wall text

Produced with support from the artist-in-residence program at Cittadellarte-Fondazione Pistoletto in Biella, Italy, 2004

Cuneo (wedge) is an installation that presents research material from Barge and Bagnolo, two small villages in the Piemonte province of Cuneo in northern Italy (Cuneo means wedge in Italian). The villages are notable for their large concentration of quarries and stone processing companies, but also for their population of migrant Chinese stonecutters who make up approximately a fifth of the area’s inhabitants. The Chinese workers are hired primarily to work in stone processing factories to produce an irregular flagstone suited for masonry technique known as opus incertum (irregular work). The workers use hand-tools to manually separate large quarry stones into thin slabs that follow the natural faultlines of the rock. The flagstones are used across northern Italy as roofing material and in neighboring European countries as paving stone in urban reconstruction projects.

Stone being transported in Barge and Bagnolo. Image from projected digital slidedeck.

Stone blocks awaiting processing in Barge. Image from projected digital slidedeck.

A quarry in Bagnolo. Image from projected digital slidedeck.

Stone dust in a quarry in Bagnolo. Image from projected digital slidedeck.

Flagstone in a stone processing yard in Bagnolo. Image from projected digital slidedeck.

Open air market in Bagnolo. Image from projected digital slidedeck.

Market stall in Bagnolo. Image from projected digital slidedeck.

T-shirts hanging from a market stall in Bagnolo. Image from projected digital slidedeck.

Installation views, Unidee in Progress (group exhibition), Cittadellarte-Fondazione Pistoletto, Biella, Italy, 2004, curated by Judith Wielander