“The Art of the Treasure Hunt” is a journey through Chianti in search of its hidden gems. A result of collaboration between passionate art and wine lovers, this unique project features works by international artists displayed in the finest wineries of the region. Sculptures, installations, photographs and films punctuate the oenological grand tour through sensations. The participants of the hunt travel across the area relishing its aromas, colours and scents.
Their experience oscillates between the old and the new – they contemplate contemporary art in the shadow of ancient cellars while savouring new oil and tasting aging wine. By blending distant temporalities “The Art of the Treasure Hunt” reveals the spirit of the place rather than the spirit of time.
It is an attempt at distilling the essence of Tuscan genius loci from rich bouquet of impressions.
From the founding narrative of Egyptian myth, where Osiris breaks himself into pieces, grinding fiction into fact, as life springs forth from the silts of the ever changing levels of the Nile, so the ancient soil of Italy has brought forth life in the form of grapes, their transformation into wine: an art which endures by craft and culture.
The very meaning of the word culture issues from « colere, or tilling of land. To cultivate » the long process of nurturing and observation with a whiff of chance, thus creating. The creator in his studio foments, ferments, tills and stirs ; a perfect home of nature, where product springs from an alchemy of elements, any one of which if compromised can foil the batch. Elemental as in water, earth, light-even fire in the case of the Champagne country where gas lines are programmed to :heat: the fields if a drastic cold spell threatens the crop. The artist hovers on this same precipice, mixing elements in a pungent brew which can take or not… For the sculptor the danger lies on the finish line-viz Benevenuto Cellini hurtling the contents of his studio into the molten cauldron in despair of perfection. The painter « repents » and often declares null and void- tossing his canvas into the compost pile in the « fonds d’atelier »…The film maker makes the drastic choice of cut: and before digital engineering, often had to grapple on the floor for lost fragments. The photographer douses himself in hypo and the burgundy dusk of the dark room- inactinic light teaching his eye to see again.
These choices, or chances are the dice of risk which certain artists and vintners scramble daily. The arts,from technique to magic form an alliance of affinity, which here today in Tuscany endure. The path we are to follow is a peregrination: rather a pilgrimage- we are invited to celebrate the magical fusion of two arts, and each locality from Borgo San Felice to Gagliole has a particular blend to offer. Here the past meets the present, tradition encounters challenge, and each of the players has his or her unique recipe to offer. Earth, water,light and time unite to sing : as Purcell so aptly set to music…: « Come come ye sons of art, come, come away… ».
This summer we inaugurate « Art of the Treasure Hunt » in Tuscany showcasing seven outstanding wineries in the Chianti region with great contemporary art. Should you be spending the summer in Tuscany please visit us until October 31st.