Willy Verginer is an Italian contemporary artist and sculptor who lives and works in Ortisei, Italy. He attended the Art Institute of Ortisei, where he studied painting and after graduation, worked in various wood sculpture studios in Val Gardena. He creates figurative wood sculptures, drawing inspiration from the arresting nature surrounding him and the fragility of our environment. On an interview with City Code he says this about the affect of his work location:
“The area I live in is indeed very beautiful. In my work, I see two sources of influence that remind me of home. The first is wood, my raw material. In my area there is a long tradition of using wood in architecture as well as in artistic handicraft. I grew up in an area where there is a long tradition of wood carving. In 1700 there were already many artists and shops that created wonderful baroque artworks. In 1800, Val Gardena was the greatest centre of religious wood carving. That’s how I learned the art of carving wood in my valley. The second source of influence is the environmental issue. Living in an area where the beauty of nature is really dominant, it was obvious that one of my themes would be overexploitation and destruction of nature. Had I lived in a big city, my expression would have definitely been much different.”
Images: Courtesy of Willy Verginer.