Valtellina man, the community and the resources of the mountain


‘The daily life of the inhabitants of mountain areas has always developed at the pace imposed by the work in the fields and by the seasons. Therefore the village lives in the valley throughout the winter and carries out the maintenance of the land and of the houses, looks after the animals, makes cheese and butter, spins and weaves, does the houseworks and, last but not least, looks after the family as usual. In spring the whole village, young and old people, men, women and children, migrates to a higher altitude and goes and live in the next village up (1,000 metres), where the main activities, besides the usual ones, are hoeing, sowing and dealing with the soil. In the summer there is a new change of residence and people move to even higher altitudes on the mountain: 1,800-2,000 metres, where the main activity is that of producing dairy products. This is the time when the best cheeses, the full fat ones, are made. In the autumn it is time to go back to the valley, where people pick and dry chestnuts and carry out the last activities linked to the fields; before it snows, it is time to harvest and make wine. In all these months, the main occasions for gathering and celebrating are linked to traditional and religious feasts, when everybody goes to church, maybe even walking for hours or setting off at night in order to be there on time: for everyone it is important to be there. This reality has now been partially changed and settled down as a life in the towns in the valley. Nevertheless it still offers concrete indications of the possibility for the people of the mountain to regain their cultural identity. The Northern part of the Italian region of Lombardy, called Valtellina is the meaningful expression of the “archipelago” of alpine culture, which asks modern society for some space and interest. The exhibition is the result of the work carried out by the “Don Minzoni” cultural and social centre in the town of Sondrio: a nucleus of people who started to tighten the link with the history of their own land, whose signs, scattered and illegible for most people, are the way in which it is possible to build some meaningful work.’


21 Agosto 1982 - 29 Agosto 1982


Exhibitions Meeting Exhibitions