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Oasi Zegna and its enchanted trees


Once upon a time, there was an enchanted Forest that could make even the saddest, most taciturn person smile, give voice to the trees and unite humankind and nature in a single, wide embrace. Once upon a time, there was a prodigious Forest capable of telling timeless tales to adults and children, stories of crabby old beeches that rediscover the joys of friendship, of birches shining with inner light and making friends with humans. Once upon a time, there was, and still is, a magic that everyone can rediscover in the Bosco del Sorriso, the experiential circuit created in the Oasi Zegna by the eco-designer Marco Nieri. It enables visitors to enjoy the beneficial effects of electromagnetic fields produced by the trees. Three enchanting rest areas have been made for children and their parents: there are stone seats and big wooden books made of fragrant cedar in which they can read the Tales of the Forest, written specially for the visitors and inspired by Steinerian philosophy. Below are the beginnings of three stories dedicated to the commonest trees in these places. Why not come and read them yourself at Oasi Zegna!   THE FIR This is the story of two brothers who lived in a marvelous forest on the slopes of the Alps. They were born where the seasons run their proper course: it snowed in winter and everything was white, while in summer the sun warmed all the creatures and the meadows came alive with thousands of differently colored flowers. The two brothers were no taller than a meter and both had a dream: to one day manage to touch the moon with the tips of their branches. The Lord told them that when they grew up they’d be able to do it but that they’d have to be patient. In the summers, lots of kids went to play in the forest and the two young trees loved to hear them running amongst their boughs. But when a mum or a dad pointed them out, there was something that annoyed them…   THE BEECH A great old beech was drowsing in the early sunlight of a cool April day. With his huge branches, so long they seemed to caress the clouds, and majestic trunk, so smooth and precious, he soaked up the morning sunshine. Beautiful and powerful though he was, he had a shy and surly character and loved the company of not a single being on the Earth. Whenever a chaffinch or sparrow alighted on a branch to rest (saying it was the fault of the wind), he’d shake his branch to make the bird fly off again. Whenever a little boy came to play under his canopy, he’d drop beach husks on him till he was so annoyed he went away. Autumn came round with its rains and chilliness…   THE BIRCH There was once a village, in some green, birch-wooded mountains, where the old folk liked telling strange stories of witches and magic around the fire. They’d come there when still very young, their parents having chosen the place because it was said that witches and imps didn’t like being there. No one knew why. Or rather, only one little old lady kept the secret. One day, Lucia, the youngest girl in the village, decided to go and see her. She may have been young but she was also very brave. All on her own, carrying a basket, she went up towards the house on the hill, along a steep path. On her way through the woods she met with lots of animals and discovered plants more fragrant than she’d ever seen. So determined was she, she had to clamber up through bushes and thorn patches to reach the house perched on the top of the hill… Read the interview with eco-designer Marco Nieri on Bosco del Sorriso Read the interview with landscape architect Filippo Pizzoni on Bosco del Sorriso Download Bosco del Sorriso 2013 Depliant © Photo Giovanni Caccamo

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