A Stone-Carved Town

October 25, 2007 / Local Interest
Calcata, Lazio
This medieval “rock-top” town just 30 minutes north of Rome, attracted its current 100 or so residents from all over the world only 30 years ago. This tiny village is a study in community-building. Evacuated by Mussolini in the 1930’s for (mistaken) structural faults, Calcata was repopulated in the 1970’s by young artists.

These artists made homes in the old homes and grottos carved in the soft tufa stone – and still do. New work – from performance art to tufo carvings — seems to pop out of doorways on an hourly basis. And you would have to be a block of rock yourself not to be inspired by the town’s astonishing views over the national forest and Treja River canyon!

Unconventionally for Italy, Calcata celebrates the tradition of Halloween. On Oct. 31, everyone dresses in costume for the sculpture show on display in the caves. This year (2007) it is dedicated to two of Calcata’s original residents who passed away earlier this year.

Weekends are best to join this interesting community – if even for just the evening! And definitely bring your camera!

Lisa Finnerty

by Lisa Finnerty

Founder of Secret Gardens Italy, www.SecretGardensItaly.com, a tour company of the grand and historic Italian gardens, and www.yourgardenshow.com, a social network for gardeners.

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