An exhibition accompanies visitors on their rediscovery of work in the area's travertine quarries through photos, videos, objects and tools of daily use, also promoting the influence that this activity has had on the economy and on the local social fabric over the years.
"Fervet opvs: il lavoro ferve."
This is the expression given as the title to the exhibition, taken from Virgil's 'Georgics', which was engraved at the entrance to the stonecutters' workshop of the 'Le Querciolaie' business in Rapolano Terme, founded in 1918 as a small cooperative of stonemasons and master craftspeople of travertine marble.
The exhibition reconstructs the life of workers in quarries from the beginning of the 20th century through to the latter years of the last century, focusing on means of transport, trade union struggles for safety at work, workers' banquets, the canteen, stone working systems including the quarry and the construction site, and the professional training school for stonemasons. The exhibition consists of three sections dedicated to life in the travertine quarries and the town of Rapolano Terme, the excavation and processing of travertine that transformed over time from an artisanal practice to an industrial one, with consequent repercussions on workplaces, as well as looking at the "scuola del travertino” formed in Serre di Rapolano in 1941 requested by the Municipality and by the entrepreneurs of the quarries in order to foster qualified and active labor, up until 1970.
The exhibition features immersive storytelling, as in the case of the frescoed rooms on the second floor of the museum, in which sounds and images of excavation and travertine processing will be projected, creating a background of sound that will accompany visitors of the exhibition.
The exhibition continues inside some disused workshops where "personal exhibitions" by local contemporary sculptors who still use Rapolano travertine in their work will be exhibited.
The exhibition began from the Tradere project (from the Latin words meaning to transmit or hand down), started in 2008 by the Municipality of Rapolano Terme and the cultural association SAT, with the support of the Province of Siena to protect the memory and socio-economic value of the manual processing of travertine in Rapolano Terme. Thanks to this initiative, over the years it has been possible to create a rich archive which today contains about 3,500 vintage and contemporary photographs, tools of daily use, as well as video testimonies of workers and stonecutters about their work and their life before stone processing took on industrial aspects.
Information and contacts
The exhibition will be open from Friday July 30 until Saturday October 30.
Opening hours: Friday, from 4 to 7 pm; Saturday and Sunday, from 10am to 1pm and from 3-7pm.
Museum of Historic Grancia and Olive Oil, via Fratelli Rosselli, Serre di Rapolanomuseoanticagrancia@museisenesi.org
FB Museo dell’Antica Grancia
IG Museo dell’Antica Grancia