The laboratory for the restoration of dry stone walls

Each stone in place
Masseria Radogna a school-laboratory for the restoration of dry stone walls
Ends on 23 December the project financed by AGEFORMA

The ancient technique of ’ field clearance Cairns has ensured over time the construction of hundreds of kilometers of dry-stone, made with stones collected and accumulated along the edges of fields.
Numerous structures that are essential elements of many agricultural landscapes and today are largely abandoned.
The dry stone walls and terraces are the Prince of traditional technique combining structural and aesthetic component appearance. Attorno a queste architetture agrarie si creano importanti nicchie ecologiche di microfauna e microflora. The structure made of dry stones allows you to pick up moisture from the wind, to drain excess water, create, for the process of thermal excursion between night and day, micro water percolazioni.
This technique, widespread throughout the world has been able to recreate new landscapes, in absolute harmony with the existing nature. Thousands of kilometres away peoples have achieved the same technique that allowed him to protect the slopes or pick up moisture for the plants ' roots.
Restore and maintain the agrarian landscape, in the ’ modern optical enhancement for cultural tourism, and agro-silvo-pastoral, necessarily passes from the restoration of these extraordinary architectures. Through the application of traditional techniques will allow entire systems landscapes to return to balance: often is the lack of continuity with the knowledge of the past that causes the involution of systems that you are kept stable for centuries.
But the careful choice of stones ’, the facet, the perfect slot ’, make this ancient manual work a veritable art now disappeared, similar to the restoration of an ancient mosaic, where every stone has its place, even the right size.
Seems simple, yet not ’.
Restoration to rule d art and ’’ important do not use nor malta, Neither stones of different material from what the same local campaign returns.
If a wall is rough in parts and crumbling, must not be re-constituted, but recovered memo, redesigned in form and in the lines originating.
Even in those that refer to the surrounding environment, the landscape.
The dry wall is in fact part of a collection, and the vegetation that grows naturally on the trajectory of the fence, cannot be spiantata.
An almond tree must be safeguarded and potato "moderately", If it interferes with the restoration of dry wall.
We must also ensure the construction of tunnels at ground level, similar to those of run-off. In reality, should serve to ensure the passage of small animals or large animals such as the splendid examples preserved in Masseria Road in the Park of the Murgia Matera.
Many traditional knowledge that have modeled for centuries the agrarian landscape, today constitute an important part of the capital of our land.
Un’altra peculiarità del paesaggio agrario dell’intero areale mediterraneo, are the terraces, risultanti di fatiche plurisecolari degli uomini, that, to obtain resources for survival, they changed the harsh attitude of slopes. This agricultural technique has allowed to create arable where there, supported by dry stone walls, collection from the rock surface or fared.
The terraces are of historical value with deep ties with consolidated landscape and soil protection. Important examples are those of the 5 Terre, the Amalfi Coast, that through the valorisation of these traditional systems have transformed their agricultural sites in cultural landscapes: even an economic resource, linked to tourism and crop production.
These techniques are the result of integrated approach , layered knowledge handed down from master to disciple. A craft where already the choice of stones becomes a moment of contemplation of nature.
Through the application of traditional techniques will allow entire systems landscapes to return to balance, often is the lack of continuity with the knowledge of the past that causes the involution of systems that you are kept stable for centuries.
The dry wall of an area is more flexible in responding to the solicitations of a landslide of soil, permette all’acqua in eccesso di essere drenata e smaltita, allows the reconstruction of soils.
In the course of the ' 900, the spread of industrial economics and urbanism are decisive reason of depopulation: in the second half was a real escape.
Today, most of terraced areas are in a State of neglect and degradation phenomena are increasingly intense, Since coming to miss the hand of man, the "instrument" that for centuries has provided their surveillance and ongoing maintenance.
Today from protected areas reopen interesting scenarios for consolidation and enhancement of agrarian and pastoral landscapes also tourist purposes.
The protected areas represent our region the 18% total territorial surface, sign of the now recognised role of parks as actors in economic and cultural growth of the territories aimed at proper management of natural resources and historical.
On these assumptions the AGEFORMA (Vocational training agency of the province of Matera) organized at the Center for environmental education to Tommaselli Mario Matera a training to prepare the participants to the activities of relevant recovery, maintenance of terracing and stone walls.
Within the academic activity of 300 total hours, followed by 9 students, was brought forward the implementation of a construction site to experience the educational recovery of dry stone walls in the Park of the Murgia Matera. The apartment "paretari", is this the nickname by which they are called masters of stone in the area of Salento, si sono cimentati con un’arte nuova, ancient but unknown to them. Through it have known and recognized their scenery making it part of their heritage.
These traditional skills are believed to have a new and strategic spending both in the context of public policies of protection and enhancement of the European natural heritage, that function of private redevelopment to commissioning.
Local scale we try only to think of the impact that might have the requalification of dry stone walls and terraces within integral reserve Park, The Gravina of Matera. Would trigger a process of high landscape value, would start new business figures, would produce important tourist attractions.
On this great task of reconstruction of the ancient agrarian and pastoral landscape could play a strategic game to affirm the identity of the Parco della Murgia Matera and build one of the strategic axes of the green economy of the territory.

Many thanks for:
The teachers of the course:
Arch. Massimiliano Burgi, Dr.. For. Saverio Tarasco, Say. Antonio Montemurro
Master paretario:
Say. Vito Azzilonna
The tutor:
Dr.. Antonio Finamore
Emanuele Amoruso, John Venice, Giuseppe Lavecchia, Giuseppe Andrulli, John Bruno, Lelio Fornabaio, Antonio Cannone, Alexander's Feast, Pietro Paradise.

For more information:
Dr.. Paul Mountain
Director of the environmental education center Mario Tommaselli Matera
Mobile: 388.8925407 Mail: