Garden of Poetry
The most important exhibition for me in 2010 was certainly „Il Giardino delle Poesie“, the „Garden of Poetry“, in the garden of Villa Aganoor Pompilj on the shore of Lake Trasimeno in Umbria, Italy.
Villa Aganoor Pompilj, is named after the poetess Vittoria Aganoor Pompilj and her husband, the Umbrian politician Guido Pompilj, counselor of the Italian king, who lived here at the beginning of the 20th century.
Lake Trasimeno inspired Vittoria Aganoor to write a multitude of poems about the beauty of nature and specially about the beauty of the lake.
Her husband had made for her a terrace with a wide view over the lake on the third floor of the villa.
This terrace became one of her favourite places and it is reported that it was there, where she wrote a big part of her poems.
Hundred years ago Vittoria Aganoor Pompilj died after a surgical intervention which went wrong.
Guido Pompilj shot himself on the same day after writing down his will.
In Umbria and Padova, the hometown of Vittoria Aganoor, the tragic story of that prominent couple is the occasion of celebrations in memory of them on the hundredth anniversary of their deaths
For an artist planing an exhibition in the setting of that story, of course it is impossible, not to be influenced by it. And of course it happened to me as well.
Creating the sculptures for the different places in the garden of the poetess spontaneously some verses of my own came to my mind.
Titles at first, pieces of sentences, fragments joining little by little, finally becoming complete poems.
In my life I have written some poems now and then. Yet, seeing appear so many poems in my mind all at once seemed fairly amazing.
Sometimes it seemed to me the stones would reveal their thoughts to me while I was sculpting.
It may sound surprising but these poems came to me not only in German, my native language, but in different languages. German, English and Italian to be precise.
The title of the first poem sneaked into my thoughts in Italian „Ali del Tramonto“ (wings of sunset). Initially I wanted to use these words only as title for the sculpture I was working on. But then there was no more holding back. The entire poem wanted to see the world and finally one poem after the other entered the scene.
My sculptures often have been called poetic but never before the connection of poetry in words and poetry in stone had been so obvious. In a funny interplay the words formed the stones while the stones formed the words.
Many visitors of the exhibition told me that the unique combination of poetry and sculpture touched them deeply.
It would have been nice if this particular exhibition could have become a steady part of the villa´s garden but that was not possible.
Therefore I decided to make a book about the exhibition, including photos of all the sculptures and the poems belonging to them in three languages.
It is not easy to translate poems in another language. Their meaning changes a little everytime you try.
However I think I succeeded in doing so, thanks to the help of my wife Annette and the help of some friends
To make and publish a book is no easy task if you want to make it special. It requires a lot of work and of course also money.
Yet I am confident with your help we will be able to make this book, and it will be a great book.
Important News about my "Garden of Poetry" book!
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