This next part of the interview with Giacomo doesn’t have a specific setting behind it. The Orti Dipinti party had to come to an end; the music couldn’t go on echoing around the tops of surrounding buildings or reverberating among the tiny leaves of herbs. But Il Bisonte Journal keeps a virtual window open on what’s happening with the Orti and Giacomo. The former hosts new people daily. And we just spoke to the latter on the phone: he’d just come back from an electronic music festival.
The Journal for Orti Dipinti, with Il Bisonte.
Where were we? he asks. Taking those first steps past the Borgo Pinti door and viewing it on high from Consuelo’s house. It was 2010, Giacomo continues, and it took three years of red tape to be allowed to plant an urban garden here; I wanted it to grow naturally and legally. Who managed this athletics track anyway? Judging from the initial photos no athletes have been glimpsed here for ages.
The «Gaetano Barberi» Center, Borgo Pinti, 74.
This is how we learn about Flavia Cervo. Gray hair and green eyes. She’s no longer with us. She believed in Giacomo’s plan ever since he came knocking on the door next to the old athletics track, or rather at the Gaetano Barberi Center. Flavia was the director of this cooperative committed to dealing with social marginalization in Florence. An urban garden in Borgo Pinti? At that time, Giacomo tells us on the phone, the area between the trees and buildings was barely used for the Center’s many guests. Why not allow new plants, and the whole city, to have contact with Flavia’s group?
From Social Center to the whole city: the Galileo Prize.
Is there a date, we wonder, when the first flower bed was planted? Of course, is the reply: and it has to do with Piero Angela! If the Orti Dipinti attracted even our most famous science journalist, who knows how many others…In short, Giacomo met Alfonso de Virgiliis, founder of the Galileo Prize, who convinced him to submit his garden because it truly promotes peace and human rights, and is much more than simply an abandoned track in the San Marco district of Florence. It’s July 2013 and the submission deadline is September. Well Giacomo was one of the winners, and Orti Dipinti began to grow. At the awards ceremony he shook hands with Piero Angela. Who knows if he’s ever visited the garden?