The objects that liven up our daily landscape are never just instruments or tools in order to achieve a practical function. They are activators of behaviors, means to communication, instruments of our gestures, but also witnesses of our lives that are able to store memories and remembrances to be passed down. Objects help us and – when they are made to last for a long time – they survive, bringing traces of passed connections within themselves. To endure the passage of time it is necessary that they carry out essential and always useful functions; but also that they have definite forms, able to go beyond temporary fashions.
For this reason in Grammichele – which is a unique place in the world in and of itself – have decided to create Desine, a collection of furnishings and objects designed starting from the connection between us and the things that surround us.
The context is essential in this project.
We are in eastern Sicily, in a territory famous for craftsmanship and in a city one of a kind both for its conformation and its traditions.
Its central square with a hexagonal layout defines all the urban pattern , born from an enlightenment project of rebuilding after the earthquake in 1693. The residents, survived the earthquake, started, in fact, immediately sculpting terracotta statuettes. The prowess of the artisans is revealed in all its wisdom that, althought with few available resources, it can transfer a soul to the carved material.
Since 1901 an Art Institute was founded in Grammichele in order to train the sons of local artisans; today the artisans, trained here, know how to manage the oldest techniques and the most original technological means, with the awareness of their role as interpreters and co-protagonists of the planning vision.
Right here in 1996 Francesco Azzolina and Salvatore Mancuso, both experts in shaping wood, meet each other. From 14 to 23 years of age Salvatore works for Arca arredi, a company in which his father works as taskmaster and , from whom he learns the art of cabinet making. The partnership between Salvatore and Franco began in 1998 when they opened a joiner’s workshop in a garage from which, Dallegno company was born (as an individual company) and it became the current Dallegno s.r.l in 2005. What Azzolina and Mancuso learn in these years is not only pratical experience, but also a different awareness about the ancient role of the craftsman. The latter, in fact, is a figure that in recent times has been able to open up to dialogue with the world of design, making available for designers a millennial knowledge that has been revised through the use of the most innovative technologies.
As a result – recently and it is no surprise – the meeting with Vincenzo Castellana takes place, The latter is an architect and a designer who understands how a new way of making a project can be created from the knowledge and processing skill of Dallegno's raw material.
The main idea is to create furniture able to combine a strong personality and a clear connection with local contexts, together with a broader and more contemporary point of view of the project. Thus, with several local and international creators, the Desine project was born.
During the design of this series, the "object" was imagined, , but also the "direct object", that is the result of an action, because the elements of living are not only beautiful images in a shop window, but real companions of our existence.
Each of these products has its own nature that can enter inside the stories of those who will choose them, as if it were a friend with whom to share a piece of their own path.
In fact, in fact, is a project that rediscovers the most natural of human instincts: building a habitable setting, creating functional tools to enjoy it and surround yourself with beautiful and enjoyable things. From the encounter between knowledge and ancient materials with contemporary technologies and planning concept, a new way of making objects for the life of current man, is born.