Bozen/Bolzano – Südtirol/Alto Adige

Curated by

Lungomare Kulturverein

Where on earth do we belong - research

May – August 2018

Located near the alpine Brenner pass, the border city of Bolzano has always been a North-South gateway and fruitful intersection point of cultures. Today it finds itself amidst acute European migration flows and ecological dilemmas. During preliminary fieldwork, multiple life trajectories related to the territory will be mapped through encounters with humans and non-humans, paying attention to their intrinsic possibilities and their abilities to act. The second phase of the research involves composing found biographies into a collective story, by weaving in and with the landscape, and thus enunciating alternative cosmographies of the Trentino-Alto Adige region.

Thus, countless meetings and discussions took place in the first half of the year 2018, in the winter school Ultental on traditional textile crafts, in the communal garden Semirurali about the co-existence of “new” and “old” South Tyroleans in the urban area as well as in different museums of the region to get to know scientific perspectives on the material culture and the historical dimensions of the territory. Sophie Krier spoke to farmers, fence farmers, weavers, bakers and other international craftsmen as well as archeologists, anthropologists and ethnologists, geologists, architects, politicians and many more.

June 5th 2018 – Artist Talk

As part of a lecture, Sophie Krier presented her project and her artistic practice to an interested public. As a trained textile designer (Design Academy Eindhoven), she interweaves the stories of humans, animals and places at the interface between art and ecology.

In the artist talk Sophie Krier presented her current research and reflected on issues of belonging, memory and livelihood. The way we build relationships with a place, our family, and ourselves are fundamental issues in her current research. Through dialogue with local craftspeople and the exploration of topography and landscape, the search seeks common ground for unheard voices of minorities who are not just physical persons, but also myths, places and animals.

She combined the lecture with a direct interaction with the audience, which immediately flowed into the research for “School of Verticality” – the joint and participative networking of “lifelines”.

VIDEO-LINK: Artist Talk Sophie Krier

July 10th 2018 - overtime meeting

A working meeting to think and debate with a group of invited thinkers from South Tyrol about the importance and shifting of borders in the region. The workshop is part of the research for chapter three of the “School of Verticality”.

Roland Dellagiacoma (expert in landscape planning)
Corrado Morelli (geologist, office of geology Kardaun)
Susanne Waiz (architect)
Lucio Giudiceandrea (journalist)
Margareth Kaserer (artist, farmer)
Angelika Burtscher (curator, Lungomare)
Roberto Gigliotti (curator, Lungomare)
Lisa Mazza (curator, Lungomare)


With an approach characterized by an “expanded” vision of migration, Sophie Krier is developing a project to stimulate the gathering and sharing of knowledge between the different cultures that come into contact with the territory of South Tyrol. In the center of artistic research, which has developed through discussions with experts in local history, anthropologists, geographers, landscape experts, artisans and social workers, Sophie Krier places a dense interweaving of elements that describe in a structured manner what our world and the transformation that it undergoes, makes up. Sophie Krier does not limit herself to dealing with society as a network of relationships between people, but extends her intervention to a structure in which society is part of a complex ecosystem of territory, landscape and all beings. Including the animals, without neglecting the symbolic meaning that they adopt in the local tradition and in the cultures that they continue to overlay.

Introduction to „School of Verticality“

From the research of the artist, which was carried out in the first part of 2018 under the research question “Where on earth do we belong”, the project SCHOOL OF VERTICALITY was born. It is an initiative in three chapters, of which the first chapter was presented in Bolzano on September 22, 2018 on the occasion of the harvest festival of the Orto Semirurali.

SCHOOL OF VERTICALITY is a public program for listening to and learning situational knowledge. Where on earth do we belong? What already forgotten forms of life and work can we visualize and reinvent together? Each chapter interweaves different biographies (human, animal, region) and times (geology, history, biology, dreams and memories).

With SCHOOL OF VERTICALITY Sophie Krier establishes a format in which knowledge meets in a process of mutual enrichment of all participants. The verticality of the title refers to an in-depth investigation that not only crosses the layers of society and the complexity of phenomena, but extends from the bottom of the valley to the top of the mountains of our territory, interweaving their history, culture, and geomorphology.

Chapter I: Weaving one's garden biographies


PDF flyer:
SoV Chapter I

from September 22nd 2018

The first episode of the SCHOOL OF VERTICALITY is titled “Weaving one’s garden biographies” and was defined in close collaboration with the Donne Nissà association and the gardeners of the Semirural Garden of Bolzano.In a joint action with the Akrat association, Sophie Krier installed a vertical loom in the garden designed to create fragments of a fabric that depict stories and memories of the garden. The result of the weaving process, together with the framework designed as a covered meeting point, will remain on site and intertwine over the next few seasons with the vegetation cultivated in the vegetable garden.

On 22 September 2018, 2 – 6 pm, a permanent intervention was presented and inaugurated in the community garden Semirurali (Baristraße / corner Alessandriastraße, Bolzano). Visitors were invited to weave their personal stories and ideas of a garden on an outdoor loom using the inclusive technique of plain weave. The intentionally simplified loom is incorporated into a permanent structure that can also be used for other purposes (music podium, storage).


From 5 pm

«On setting up a project in dialogue with a territory»
Introduction by Lungomare curators

«On the gendered history of weaving in South Tyrol»
Sophie Krier interviews Meran-based weaver Cornelia Larcher

«On art as a form of sociability, and artists interweaving the social»
Social anthropologist Francesca Cozzolino interviews Sophie Krier

«On weaving as ancestral, embodied practice»
Pedagogue Cecilia Muñoz takes us on a collective dance journey

Cornelia Larcher (text.il.fabric Meran)
Cecilia Muñoz (Mafalda+)
Francesca Cozzolino (anthropology of art, Ensadlab – PSL Research University Paris)
Hilary Solly (Donne Nissà)
AKRAT – Christian Mittendorfer

Revitatex – Magdalena Oberrauch
Donne Nissà

The loom was used for joint weaving actions in the weeks and months after the initiation by several women’s groups from the Donne Nissà network. Thus, the fabric was further developed and more and more stories of gardens from all over the world could be incorporated into the fabric.

Chapter II: Weaving bread as a shared imaginary


Based on the saying “If you lose bread, you lose culture”, Chapter 2 will focus on landscape, landscape management, and farming in two collective narrative and reflection workshops focussing on diversity and tradition.

The first will take place at the first edition of the SamenFest in Mals (February 23). The second workshop will take place within the context of the “Hier und Da – Gut leben im ländlichen Raum / Il buon vivere nelle zone periferiche” festival (April 12-14) also in the Obervinschgau. This 1000 to 1500 meter high valley was once known as the grain attic of South Tyrol. Eco-activists have joined forces to revitalise and diversify its grain legacy. But which forms of ancient knowledge are still accessible to us? How can we intertwine existing knowledge, activate issues of sustainability and healthy lifestyles and thus think positively about a constant development? How can know-how originating in other geographic areas of our world be networked and meaningfully supplemented with regional knowledge and cultural assets?

The biography of a bread begins with the seed. By interacting with the landscape and fellow humans, the seed becomes grain, flour, dough, cultural product and intangible heritage. Together with local experts in sustainable and organic agriculture with a focus on cereal cultivation and processing, in particular the diverse bread-making traditions, an intersubjective interweaving of knowledge and traditions will be stimulated. In addition to an insight into the historical development of the valley and its variety of crops, practical knowledge will be shared amongst the participants.

Bürgergenossenschaft Obervinschgau
Donne Nissà

Part I: Seeding Stories


Download your Seeding Stories form here:
SoV A4 Seeding Stories

Video: Seeding Stories manual

PDF flyer:
SoV Chapter II, Part I

February 23rd, 2019
Sockerhof, Mals-Malles

Seed swap market SamenFest
11 am – 12 pm: Screening “Wisdom of the Mountains” (Van Osch Films / Frederik van Oudenhoven, 2017, 40’’, Italian subtitles)

1 – 2 pm: Soup lunch

2 – 3 pm: Round table on seed saving and seed swapping as good practices of diversity and self-organized resistance. With:
Frederik van Oudenhoven, ethnobotanist;
Armin Bernhard, pedagogue, co-founder of the Bürgergenossenschaft Obervinschgau;
Anna Folie, seed swap host, farmer and seed saver;
Susanne Waiz, architect and Semirurali garden coordinator for Donne Nissà.

Hosted by
SamenFest, Bürgergenossenschaft Obervinschgau

Part II: Breaking Bread


PDF flyer:
SoV Chapter II, Part I

April 14th, 2019
Kulturhaus Schluderns

10 am – 12 pm: Field trip with researcher Georg Niedrist, Institute for Alpine Environment, Eurac research. We will hike to the LTSER (Long Term Socio- Ecological Research) Station at Muntetschinig where Eurac investigates the impact of climate change on grasslands between 980m and 2700m.

12 – 4 pm: Collective baking session to reactivate the idea of a shared community oven by interweaving bread shapes and customs. Participants can do different exercises guided by artist Sophie Krier and facilitated by baker Mike Kofler. (20 pers.)

Chapter III: Weaving moving boundaries (OVERTIME)


May 25th, 2019

The third chapter of the “School of Verticality” concludes this series of site-specific interventions and reflects on the cultural landscape of South Tyrol using the example of the Villanderer Alm in a collective happening.

The planned happening is inspired by the practical and theoretical work of the American artist and art theorist Allan Kaprow and his work “Overtime”. In this work, the artist gives instructions on how to move a 60-meter-long fence over a distance of 1.6 km during one night. Sophie Krier draws inspiration from Allan Kaprow’s instructions to reflect on the meanings and consequences of shifting borders. She refers to the local tradition of the Ultental cabinet fence (and other South Tyrolean pasture fence techniques) with its characteristics as a temporary fence that creates flexible boundaries without technical aids.