The leading company in the Carrara district partners in a workshop that brings talent to imagine the future of a disused quarry

The appointment is for this September, when an exceptional tutor such as Patrick Lüth of Snøhetta will arrive in Carrara to guide the students of the new architecture course organised by YACademy to discover the design possibilities that open up in front of a disused marble quarry. The initiative, Carrara Community Quarry, has Franchi Umberto Marmi as a partner: the historic Tuscan company, a leader in the Carrara marble district, embraces this challenging workshop by sharing the vision of an architecture that preserves and enhances landscapes for the benefit of future generations. We talked about it with Alberto Franchi, CEO and President of FUM.

What does a disused quarry represent for FUM today, particularly in a critical area like Carrara?

It represents the possibility of reinterpreting a space by giving it new life - seeing mining activity and dynamics linked to territorial promotion coexist - and becomes a precious opportunity to be seized absolutely for a renewed vision of our territory.

What prompted FUM to join the Carrara Community Quarry project?

We were impressed by the forward-looking nature of the project and the seriousness of the team involved. In addition to this, we find it really appreciable that the entire programme is designed for young design professionals: we totally embrace the idea of having brilliant minds from all over the world who can channel their creative energies towards a single, ambitious goal that is more topical than ever, linked to sustainability issues. This is the direction in which our company is moving and we thank YACademy for this beautiful and important synergy.

What results do you expect from this workshop?

Expectations are high: we think that new visions and new design perspectives will emerge from this workshop. The young architects who will be involved will have the opportunity to put the knowledge acquired during their cursus studiorum to good use in a site-specific project that, like the Carrara quarries, is unique in the world. They will thus be able to reflect on the delicate and highly topical issue of the integration of artificial landscape and natural landscape. I see it a bit like going into the future.

What will be done, concretely and materially?

The general objective of YACademy's course in Landscape Architecture is to train designers who are able to respond to the different needs of land transformation through a constructive dialogue with the surrounding environment. Alongside the didactic modules, students will therefore be offered the design workshop in which we are partners and thanks to which, under the tutorship of Patrick Lüth of Snøhetta, the students will be our guests and will visit the quarries of Carrara (specifically, they will work on the quarry at the foot of the Ponti di Vara) and the territory in order to internalise the places and gather the necessary cues to then move on to the design phase.