Maurizio, the carpenter from Valtellina

by Italian Stories

I like to consider myself a “carpenter 2.0”. I have worked in the province of Sondrio for 10 years and have devoted myself to this wonderful profession for 20 years now.

I’ve been hooked on it since childhood, when I spent the summers with my maternal grandparents in mountain pastures, surrounded by family pets. On rainy days, I made wooden cutlery, bowls and walking sticks with just a small set of hand tools.

I was only 14 when this simple pastime transitioned into a real profession: I chose to attend a carpentry vocational school and graduated in 2000.

I wish my products could talk, and convey all the warmth and affection that I have devoted to transforming raw materials into finished objects. Each one is like a piece of me – actually, it really is a piece of me: that’s why I make the effort to make them really beautiful, and sometimes unique and wonderful. After all, they are made of wood: a living matter that has already had a different “life” before, and a precious material with a distinctive worn-in look that I like to preserve. I like to maintain the wood’s original colors and designs as much as possible, and this requires a careful evaluation of the material and of the final form of the project.

When I turn a “piece” from an oak-chestnut barrel into an object by young designer friends, I live a moment of real passion, and that is the feeling I would like to convey to those who come to visit me.

My workshop is nestled between apple orchards and the famous terraced vineyards of Valtellina. My family owns a little bit of land that we cultivate for our own consumption. This area is rich in ideas and offers a unique landscape that sets my work in a beautiful frame.

I cherish Valtellina, my beautiful land, as much as wood. It is a land of flavors and scents, with incredibly fascinating views. For this reason, when I welcome curious passersby and apprentices in my workshop – for example, to create with them a chestnut or oak chair from salvaged old wine barrels – I am always happy to show them around, introducing them to my friends who make the famous Sfürzat wine and giving them a chance to sample the specialties of the Valtellinese tradition.

Photographs © Mattia Rio



Most Read

The Great War Museum: history at high altitude

Author: Barbara PalladinoTranslation by Michelle NebioloOn the top of the Marmolada, at 3,000 meters of altitude, you’ll find the Marmolada Great War...

Palazzo Giordano Apostoli: neo-gothic inspiration

Palazzo Giordano Apostoli is located in Sassari’s central Piazza d’Italia. It was built by will of Giuseppe Giordano Apostoli in 1877, in...

Move To The Top takes you to the roof of the Dolomites

Author: Barbara PalladinoTranslation by Michelle Nebiolo On 4 July 2020, the cableway to Malga Ciapèla will re-open. Its short,...

Tenute La Montina, the realm of Franciacorta

Author: Barbara PalladinoTranslation by Michelle NebioloTenute La Montina is located in Monticelli Brusati (BS), in the north-east of Franciacorta, next to an ample...