‘’Costellazione d’artista’’ is an original urban intervention project latin for several years, it is being carried out thanks to the cooperation between the municipality of Cercenasco and Martin-Martini Arte Internazionale. The main aim of this project is to enrich and re-qualify, in an innovative way, the urban territory through the installation of contemporary artworks, and preserving the local identity respectfully.
The main idea of this project was about transforming in artwork one of the most anonymous manufactured product that is always ‘’under’’ our eyes: the ‘’manhole’’. This object, used as a simple sidewalk cover, has been reinterpreted by international contemporary artists with the aim of giving it a new connotation without losing its primari utility. The artist’s manholes, made out of cast iron, are replacing the existing ones by re-proposing the composition of the major celestial constellations. No act of distortion, no meteors or asteroids that suddenly shake up the ‘’quietness of the village’’ but a ‘’shower of stars’’, handcrafted gemstones set in an ideal ring nut and represented by the manholes system, that have softly ’’fallen down’’ in the streets and squares of the village.
The first phase of the project foresees the installation of six manholes created by six famous international artists: Ann-Caroline Breig, Danilo Bozzetto, Gabriele Garbolino Rù, Elio Garis, Paolo Grassino and Rob Ward. These fi rst artist’s manholes have been installed in the historic centre of Cercenasco, following a pre-ordained drawing that recreates the form of the Ursa Minor constellation, whose polar star is represented by the manhole already existing in the coat of arms of the municipality. Moreover, every year, at least three artists will be invited, so that to implement the ‘’constellations’’ progressively.
The original form of the manhole, used for the fusion, will be spared and exhibited in the permanent collection of the ‘’Museo del Chiusino’’ (The Manhole Museum) that will be held in the old industrial windmill in Cercenasco. Here visitors will fi nd moulds, sketches, studies and the photographic, video and documentary material of the artistic production of all the artists involved.
These manholes become open-air artworks and heritage of the community, able to attract passers-by for their aesthetic value and for the message that enclose without losing their function, and better still, prompting the observers even to think about the importance and the capillarity of the water and the drainage system infrastructure. The contemporary art enters on ‘’tiptoe’’ and merge itself in the environment in which is being hosted.
This intervention enriches the territory Pinerolo plain area, even in terms of tourist attractions, and its remarkable historic and architectonic heritage of this new important artistic element.