The picture of three shells was taken while we were on a summer holiday in Val Gardena, in the north eastern semi-autonomous state of Alta Adige/South Tyrol [part of Italy].
The valley sits on the north west of the Dolomites and we were there to see some fantastic sculptors, do some walking, and enjoy Italian food.
In many ways Val Gardena is a strange place. It seems to have passed back and forth between Austria and Italy and all the while it maintained its unique culture and language. Street signs are in three languages, Italian, German, and Ladin [the local language]. During the First World War, it was Austrian and Russian prisoners of war built a railway up the valley. The railway is long gone but its foundations serve as an excellent path up the valley between several of the villages and towns. The shells were by the path and seat, the slats of which form the backdrop to the shells. I was taken with the size, and colour variation, and degree of weathering.
And here are snippets of Bruno Walpoth, Aron Demetz and Walter Moroder’s work [the first two have websites and there are many other talented sculptors and artists in the region].
Please seek them out, Vincent