The front door of the house comes off the glorious marble steps of the Via Dietro Gli Orti, the most beautiful street in Guardia Sanframondi – between the famous facade of the old town, and the gardens below.
There are two rooms on this lower ground floor; the second bathroom and the stable.
The stable, like the second bathroom, has an arched ceilings – and there are big wooden double doors that open directly out into the street.
The stable is entered from the inner house via a very low doorway: I always loved this quirk, as it formed a special kind of privacy between this event space and the main house, but it might be more practical to have it heightened (a relatively simple task, which I can advise on).
Since buying the house, this room has been used as a guest room (it had a platform bed for some years, and makes a wonderful cool summer space), a shop and art gallery, an installation space, and for various parties and special events. It is extremely versatile and accessible… I’ve had many exhibitions, for example, that also make use of the street as an extension of the event.
As a neighbourhood collective, the Via Dietro Gli Orti and environs have made some brilliant collective collaborations; art festivals, pop-up restaurants, Christmas spectacles, theatre, art performance, cinema and projects, music, dance, celebrations… The arthouse has been central in many events, and has a strong positive reputation. There is a wonderful camaraderie here, and both the town hall and the community welcome new ideas and projects.
The stable currently has very basic furniture in it, as I have been using it as a studio for large works. So there’s a sofa, table and chairs, and some old shelving, and paintings and works in progress around.