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Meeting the people of Carnia region

Published on 23/02/2021 (last modified 26/02/2021)

Federica D’Orazio and Agata Gridel are facilitators working with UTI Carnia (Comunità di Montagna della Carnia) on discovering hidden gems of northern Italy - in Ovaro, Paularo and Prato Carnico within project Excover. In over two months of interviews and meetings with locals, they have collected a lot of material, so thanks to their passion, with participation and enthusiasm of many people involved, there are plenty of interesting stories to share. In this interview Agata and Federica described their experience in meeting people and conducting interviews, so they are now sharing what they have enjoyed the most during the whole process.

Task of the facilitators within Excover project isn’t easy and it requires an open mind. Luckily, Federica D’Orazio and Agata Gridel, the facilitators for UTI Carnia (Comunità di Montagna della Carnia), successfully got to know the people of Carnia region in northern Italy and saw their customs. Federica was facilitator for municipality of Prato Carnico, better known as Val Pesarina, and the municipality of Ovaro, which was the territory almost unknown to her. On the other hand, Agata got the territory of Val d' Incaroio, the municipality of Paularo in Carnia, where she was born, raised and living.

Getting to know community history

- I made a choice to work in the mountains in the museum field and explored Ovaro only in this context, without knowing people. Val Pesarina, on the other hand, is a well-known place, where I have been working for some years, always in a museum, but I already had knowledge of the area, especially when it comes to Pesaris. They welcomed me into their homes and shared their community history. It was a moment of great and profound sharing, of experiences but above all of emotions – said Federica, explaining that people of Pesaris are very active in their community, through physical and material commitment. This experience has given her the opportunity to collect and record a narration of these territories, made by the people themselves - those who live them every day, and who use words that are simple but able to give back the intensity of those places.

Best place for interviews - within families

- For me, this work opportunity has also became an opportunity for personal discovery. Paularo, a rather populous municipality for the marginal area in which we live and where I work, is a rather hidden one, a closed valley that is not leading anywhere. I have met around thirty people, and this has allowed me to come into contact with a community I did not know and to discover a territory that I had barely explored. Among the most interesting encounters I recall are those linked to ecomuseum – revealed Agata, adding that on a personal level the most fascinating interviews were those within the families, because the conversation became more active and deepen, also contrasting less evident aspects of the territory.