wwoofing in south tyrol

week 4

   Edyta   Lebens   is a felt artist and friend of my host Werner. I spent two days at her atelier learning how to felt and helping her make products to exhibit at an upcoming Christmas market.

Edyta Lebens is a felt artist and friend of my host Werner. I spent two days at her atelier learning how to felt and helping her make products to exhibit at an upcoming Christmas market.

 Homemade potato and pumpkin dumplings at the Tschenglsburg Castle. Once used for provincial rulers in the medieval era, the castle has since been converted into a cozy local restaurant and bar.

Homemade potato and pumpkin dumplings at the Tschenglsburg Castle. Once used for provincial rulers in the medieval era, the castle has since been converted into a cozy local restaurant and bar.

 A version of an Ecopassion mobile home that is currently on the market. Funnily enough, most of the orders have been made by local hotels and are utilized as sauna houses.

A version of an Ecopassion mobile home that is currently on the market. Funnily enough, most of the orders have been made by local hotels and are utilized as sauna houses.

 Cemetery in the mountain town of Planol, where a friend of Werner's who is a handweaver lives.

Cemetery in the mountain town of Planol, where a friend of Werner's who is a handweaver lives.

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   Alpacone   is a family-owned alpaca farm in Biella, northwest Italy. The wife Nadia studied Chinese at a university in Venice and the husband Andrea programs weave structures for a mens shirting company in Biella and teaches at a local university. He also builds wooden handlooms (pictured above). They couple owns 16 alpacas and have their own on-site fiber processing and industrial spinning machines.

Alpacone is a family-owned alpaca farm in Biella, northwest Italy. The wife Nadia studied Chinese at a university in Venice and the husband Andrea programs weave structures for a mens shirting company in Biella and teaches at a local university. He also builds wooden handlooms (pictured above). They couple owns 16 alpacas and have their own on-site fiber processing and industrial spinning machines.

 Washing machine

Washing machine

 Carding machine

Carding machine

 Spinning machine

Spinning machine

 One of Andrea's custom-built looms

One of Andrea's custom-built looms

 Textile artist   Laura Dell'Erba of Lalazoo Atelier   demonstrates how she prints on fabric using plants.

Textile artist Laura Dell'Erba of Lalazoo Atelier demonstrates how she prints on fabric using plants.

 Visited the exhibition of costume designer   Frida Parmeggiani    at Kunst Meran Museum.

Visited the exhibition of costume designer Frida Parmeggiani at Kunst Meran Museum.

 Roasting chestnuts at the Tschenglsburg local pub.

Roasting chestnuts at the Tschenglsburg local pub.

 On the way back from a research meeting at a technical school in Lienz Austria, we visited a handweaver named   Herman Kuhebacher   in Niederdorf. Pictured to the left is a fiber farmer named Christoph, who raises alpacas. The grey sweater he's wearing was knitted from yarn he spun himself from the fiber of his alpacas. He came to the farm later in the week to explain to me how to use the skein winding machine after I had filled up the spinning bobbin.

On the way back from a research meeting at a technical school in Lienz Austria, we visited a handweaver named Herman Kuhebacher in Niederdorf. Pictured to the left is a fiber farmer named Christoph, who raises alpacas. The grey sweater he's wearing was knitted from yarn he spun himself from the fiber of his alpacas. He came to the farm later in the week to explain to me how to use the skein winding machine after I had filled up the spinning bobbin.

 Flipping through Hermans book, "Die Kunst zu Weben. Technik und gestalterische Möglichkeiten" and checking out the chapter on hand-manipulation techniques.

Flipping through Hermans book, "Die Kunst zu Weben. Technik und gestalterische Möglichkeiten" and checking out the chapter on hand-manipulation techniques.

 Hiking on the mountain behind the farm. This bell rings when the spring water runs through the wheel in order to inform the townspeople below. A layer of fallen needles lend a rather unusual orange tint to the forest floor.

Hiking on the mountain behind the farm. This bell rings when the spring water runs through the wheel in order to inform the townspeople below. A layer of fallen needles lend a rather unusual orange tint to the forest floor.

 We found a road still covered with snow. A promising sign . Maren drew a heart with the pine needles to commemorate our halfway feat. Only to turn around an hour later due to the fading sunlight.

We found a road still covered with snow. A promising sign . Maren drew a heart with the pine needles to commemorate our halfway feat. Only to turn around an hour later due to the fading sunlight.

 On the farm, bringing hay to the animals for morning feeding. The town, Tschengls is seen in the distance.

On the farm, bringing hay to the animals for morning feeding. The town, Tschengls is seen in the distance.

 Felted soap bars

Felted soap bars

 One of Ecopassion's first projects was to design a mobile home constructed of hemp. Here is one of the models. The walls are insulated with the hemp bricks and coated with a layer of lime.

One of Ecopassion's first projects was to design a mobile home constructed of hemp. Here is one of the models. The walls are insulated with the hemp bricks and coated with a layer of lime.

 Hemp brick and wall detail.

Hemp brick and wall detail.

 A "Bird Berry" tree, translation from German

A "Bird Berry" tree, translation from German

   BioLife: Organic Products Tradeshow   in Bolzano, the capital of South Tyrol. Over 200 vendors from Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Italy exhibited their products.

BioLife: Organic Products Tradeshow in Bolzano, the capital of South Tyrol. Over 200 vendors from Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Italy exhibited their products.

 The shoe company   Risorse Future Style   uses materials like biodegradable plastic, vegetable tanned leather, hemp, and cork and are assembled in the Monte Urano region.

The shoe company Risorse Future Style uses materials like biodegradable plastic, vegetable tanned leather, hemp, and cork and are assembled in the Monte Urano region.

 Detail of woven upper fabric, made from hemp.

Detail of woven upper fabric, made from hemp.

 Buying Parmesan cheese from a cheese factory located in the Italian town, "Parma." Aha, it finally makes sense.

Buying Parmesan cheese from a cheese factory located in the Italian town, "Parma." Aha, it finally makes sense.

 The cloth must be tightly secured around a tube and boiled in water for one hour so the natural dyes in the leaves can be extracted.

The cloth must be tightly secured around a tube and boiled in water for one hour so the natural dyes in the leaves can be extracted.

 Lalazoo Artelier booth.

Lalazoo Artelier booth.

 Walking the grounds of Brunnenburg Castle, now privately owned and used as an agricultural museum and philosophy school.

Walking the grounds of Brunnenburg Castle, now privately owned and used as an agricultural museum and philosophy school.

 A curious goat at Brunnenburg

A curious goat at Brunnenburg

 Combing the fiber with a metal mechanism resembling a porcupine.

Combing the fiber with a metal mechanism resembling a porcupine.

 The fruits of my labor.

The fruits of my labor.

 Using a skein winder to empty the bobbin of the finished yarn.

Using a skein winder to empty the bobbin of the finished yarn.

 Pictured above the moss and fungi is   Maren Krings ,  a German native and photography alum from SCAD. She was passing through Tschengls this week and stayed on the farm to do some photo-documentation for a potential magazine feature on hemp. What merciful grace Maren had upon discovering that the trail map was conveniently left (by moi) on the kitchen table. So we winged it and prayed to the holy heavens we wouldn't end up in Switzerland by nightfall. What a trouper.

Pictured above the moss and fungi is Maren Krings, a German native and photography alum from SCAD. She was passing through Tschengls this week and stayed on the farm to do some photo-documentation for a potential magazine feature on hemp. What merciful grace Maren had upon discovering that the trail map was conveniently left (by moi) on the kitchen table. So we winged it and prayed to the holy heavens we wouldn't end up in Switzerland by nightfall. What a trouper.

 A type of fungus that, when you whack the bulb, emits a poisonous gas. I had to give it a go- the temptation was too difficult to resist.

A type of fungus that, when you whack the bulb, emits a poisonous gas. I had to give it a go- the temptation was too difficult to resist.

 Sunset over the town of Eyrs/Oris, where my host's construction company is located.

Sunset over the town of Eyrs/Oris, where my host's construction company is located.

 Duplo + Maren: Where the excitement began.

Duplo + Maren: Where the excitement began.

week 5

 "World Ethics" public exhibition opening at the Tschenglsburg Castle

"World Ethics" public exhibition opening at the Tschenglsburg Castle

 The day before: Mucking out the stable underneath the castle in preparation for the exhibition.

The day before: Mucking out the stable underneath the castle in preparation for the exhibition.

 More felt-making while spending another day with Edyta. My sister's favorite animal is an owl so this design is dedicated to you Josephina.

More felt-making while spending another day with Edyta. My sister's favorite animal is an owl so this design is dedicated to you Josephina.

 The     Interpoma 2016 International Apple Trade Show   commemorated its 10th anniversary by hosting a series of celebratory events in Bolzano. On Thursday, a fashion show and bodypainting performance were held at the Sheraton.

The Interpoma 2016 International Apple Trade Show commemorated its 10th anniversary by hosting a series of celebratory events in Bolzano. On Thursday, a fashion show and bodypainting performance were held at the Sheraton.

 ....and that was the end of the performance piece.

....and that was the end of the performance piece.

 "Design and Manufaktur JoCiao Markt" in Meran.

"Design and Manufaktur JoCiao Markt" in Meran.

 Catching a mother and her daughter buying one of my soap designs!

Catching a mother and her daughter buying one of my soap designs!

 Sleep in progress. Do not disturb.

Sleep in progress. Do not disturb.

 Cake 😇 😇 😇

Cake 😇 😇 😇

 After the model was painted, she laid in a box of South Tyrolean apples....

After the model was painted, she laid in a box of South Tyrolean apples....

 Fashion designer   Mateja Benedetti   showcasing her work at Interpoma. The leather-like fabric she uses was created from the by-product of apple skins.

Fashion designer Mateja Benedetti showcasing her work at Interpoma. The leather-like fabric she uses was created from the by-product of apple skins.

 Edyta selling her felt products.

Edyta selling her felt products.

 Hemp pasta from Ecopassion and red wine from my host's vineyard = my dinner.

Hemp pasta from Ecopassion and red wine from my host's vineyard = my dinner.

Week 6

 Visiting my host's wool company  B ergauf   in the valley Ulten. These industrial felting machines are about 50 years old and are used to make shoes, bags, upholstered goods and other home products.

Visiting my host's wool company Bergauf in the valley Ulten. These industrial felting machines are about 50 years old and are used to make shoes, bags, upholstered goods and other home products.

 Bags of wool waiting to be put through the carding machine

Bags of wool waiting to be put through the carding machine

 A close up of the carding machine's inner-workings.

A close up of the carding machine's inner-workings.

 More watercoloring.

More watercoloring.

 Felt artist   Verena Wopfner's   studio in Stilfs. Though a tailor by training, her meticulously crafted wall hangings and sculptures are displayed in commercial and private residences all across Europe. She and her husband Ulli also raise sheep!

Felt artist Verena Wopfner's studio in Stilfs. Though a tailor by training, her meticulously crafted wall hangings and sculptures are displayed in commercial and private residences all across Europe. She and her husband Ulli also raise sheep!

 After browsing Till and Madalena's weaving products, we were offered tea and cake in a cozy dining room on the second floor of their 300-year-old home. What started as a simple studio tour transposed into a nearly-four hour visit where we learned about the couple's travels from Japan to Iran. We also learned that Till had lived in the Marienberg Abbey in Malles for one year to conduct research on an biography he had been writing on German theologian, Meister Eckhart.

After browsing Till and Madalena's weaving products, we were offered tea and cake in a cozy dining room on the second floor of their 300-year-old home. What started as a simple studio tour transposed into a nearly-four hour visit where we learned about the couple's travels from Japan to Iran. We also learned that Till had lived in the Marienberg Abbey in Malles for one year to conduct research on an biography he had been writing on German theologian, Meister Eckhart.

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 The guardrail around the lake was not enough to keep this WWOOFer's curiosity at bay. A quick hop over the fence allowed oneself to become fully immersed the mysterious, frosty fractals of nature.

The guardrail around the lake was not enough to keep this WWOOFer's curiosity at bay. A quick hop over the fence allowed oneself to become fully immersed the mysterious, frosty fractals of nature.

 A 5 foot drum that wraps the fiber across the top to create smooth, even sheets

A 5 foot drum that wraps the fiber across the top to create smooth, even sheets

 Finished felt bolts, dyed with plant roots.

Finished felt bolts, dyed with plant roots.

 Hiking on the other side of the Vinschgau valley, by a town called Allitz.

Hiking on the other side of the Vinschgau valley, by a town called Allitz.

 An airplane passes over the glaciers of the Ortler mountains where the Laas marble is mined.

An airplane passes over the glaciers of the Ortler mountains where the Laas marble is mined.

 Lunch with my host's family at Maria Theresia Restaurant in Silandro

Lunch with my host's family at Maria Theresia Restaurant in Silandro

  Till and Madalena  are a retired married couple who weave tweeds, herringbone, and other traditional patterns together in their home in Planol. They lived in Scotland for over a decade and when they decided to move to South Tyrol, they lugged all their weaving equipment up the mountain with them. Madalena is a botanist and Till is a linguistics historian.  Because they make weavings for enjoyment rather than profit, their products are sold for a very modest price directly from their home or at local markets only.

Till and Madalena are a retired married couple who weave tweeds, herringbone, and other traditional patterns together in their home in Planol. They lived in Scotland for over a decade and when they decided to move to South Tyrol, they lugged all their weaving equipment up the mountain with them. Madalena is a botanist and Till is a linguistics historian.  Because they make weavings for enjoyment rather than profit, their products are sold for a very modest price directly from their home or at local markets only.

 Ecopassion swing beneath the staircase of my host's house.

Ecopassion swing beneath the staircase of my host's house.

 On my last day in South Tyrol, we drove to Lake Carezza in the Dolomites to visit a Christmas market where Ecopassion had a booth selling their products.

On my last day in South Tyrol, we drove to Lake Carezza in the Dolomites to visit a Christmas market where Ecopassion had a booth selling their products.

 Observing patterns of ice that stretched across the lake's bank in jagged, crisscrossing strips.

Observing patterns of ice that stretched across the lake's bank in jagged, crisscrossing strips.

 And thus, it concludes...

And thus, it concludes...