Floating Mountains

From the surveys, the encounters and the researches a specific theme has been selected as a common and fundamental element of the history of this territory, capable to evoke histories, images and ideas: the so called Valmarecchia thrust sheet


Once upon a time, a constellation of rocks generated from a whole calcareous block started to ‘navigate’ over the clay beds moving from the north and eventually fragmented in numerous pieces, thus generating the distinctive soil of not only of Pennabilli, but of the entire Valmarecchia area.


Two of these emerging rocks are the “roccione” (rock) in Penna and the “rupe” (cliff) in Billi, as well as many other rocks that became strategic points for all the villages born from the so called encastellation during the Middle Ages. This phenomenon gave origin to many urban centres that favoured the construction of a dense network of transport routes and that made this territory an important area for medieval and renaissance Italy.


Among these fragments there are the Sasso Simone and Simoncello, sacred mountains since the time of the Etruscan; the Titano Mount where San Marino Republic rose; San Leo the ancient Mons Feretrious from which originated the Montefeltro name; Verucchio, the cradle for Villanovian culture and, on the west side, La Verna, the Saint Francis of Assisi mountain and the Fumaiolo mountain where is located the Tevere river spring. But also the countless smaller rocks, the 'genghe' that where traditionally arranged along the borders of fields and pieces of cultivated land that now gave origin to the characteristic geometry of hedges.

It can be said that a single geological fact, spatially and temporally far, profoundly directed the history of this territory, highlighting the strong relationship between men and environment that is at the base of the same idea of landscape.


These navigating mountains, as Paolo Rumiz defined them in his travel along the “minor Italy” evoke histories of travels and travellers, dreamlike scenarios capable to liberate the fantasy of who wants to remodel places with, as Shakespeare would have said, the same “stuff” that men and dreams are made of.


From here comes the title of our project. From the fascinating image of a dynamic territory that found its origin in the movement and continues to mutate, to shift as a ship searching for its direction. But which is this direction? What is its dream?