Mediterranean Essence, is a bilingual book that testifies to the daily commitment to the growth, achievement and success of the Radicepura Garden Festival, the first international event dedicated to Mediterranean garden design and landscape architecture, and it will involve young designers, institutions, firms, and great protagonists of landscape art and architecture. The festival was held at Radicepura botanical gardens, fourteen gardens was open to the public, specially created with original plants cultivated by Piante Faro: a nursery with 800 species and over 5000 varieties. The Mediterranean Sea is today at the centre of numerous world events. Criss-crossed by tensions and crises, it offers a way of being that is essential for the future of mankind: a relationship with time and with pleasure; a way of breathing in the salty air and, from the peak of mythical mountains, contemplating the sea stretching to the horizon; a style of preparing and eating food that is now a world heritage. And again, the art of wine, of olive oil, of citrus fruits, that have no equals elsewhere in the world.
International names alternate along the route with young talents rewarded by the competition, and each in his or her own way proposes the essence of the Mediterranean: gentle or dramatic, sensual or arid, in a setting of the great biological diversity that develops in the Mediterranean climate. Four internationally-known garden designers are taking part in this first Festival, and they have each designed a site-specific garden of about 150 square metres for the occasion: Michel Péna, Stefano Passerotti, Kamelia Bin Zaal and James Basson. Another six, smaller gardens, ranging from 30 to 50 square metres each, have been made by young landscape architects selected through an international competition. Alongside these ten gardens, for the whole duration of the Festival Radicepura will accommodate four very special plant installations: Anamorfosi, an artistic-botanical creation by François Abélanet, Giardino Italia, the boot-shape of the Italian peninsular set out with the plants of Italy’s biodiversity, made in collaboration with Padua University and Flormart; Giardino della Dieta Mediterranea, conceived by studio Coloco, and La Macchia by Donatello Chirico. Radicepura Botanical Gardens will also hosted artistic interventions and exhibitions: the two Sicilian artists Emilio Isgrò and Alfio Bonanno will create site specific works and productions for the festival.