How did architect, Maurizio Signorini, fall in love with a briccole? It all starts with the way he looks upon a tree. His eyes are awakened by the colours of the leaves, branches and trunk. He does not see a tree as a simple body of green and brown hues, but as a 4 dimensional creature rooted to the earth, and with every glance he sees a new vista.

The oak tree is native to the Veneto forests. It is a favourite, not just of Maurizio, but also for the Venetian waterways because of its straight trunk and strength. In Veneto, the pylons for the canals are cut from the tree trunks and driven into the sea bed to become ‘Briccole’, canal markers and pier timbers.

Over the years, the water slowly erodes the timber at the boundary between the water and the air. This erosion ‘eats out’ the ‘soft’ cells in the Briccole leaving channels and ‘worm holes’ in the surface of the pylon.

After about 15 years, the Briccole has eroded at the waterline to the point where its strength is lost. Maurizio selects and buys his timbers. The years in the water have aged and ‘dried’ the wood so the trunks that were underwater can be cleaned and cut for use as table legs and other furniture.

The eroded sections of the briccole are cut to create slats that expose the intricate network of holes from the forces of erosion. These slats become the boards of an elegant table on which the glass table top rests.

Overall this reincarnation of the Venetian canal Briccole leaves the fortunate diner dreaming while gazing at the slats with visions of the canals and the sound of the water lapping on the Briccole.


We talked about them also on a discovery. Click here to read it.