11th Panel

THE UGLY BARRACK-LIKE BUILDING

It is the only example of a banister house within the territory of Bienno, built after the First World War by six families of stone-cutters “picapréde”.
It deserves to be mentioned for its structural typology, its structural technique and belonging to the productive area close to the Vaso Ré (the Rè Duct).
In fact, in this area there were originally factories and fields, as it is documented by the historical maps; at the beginning of the century, exactly in Via Artigiani (Artigiani’s Street) there were built the first Elementary Schools that are still used as Secondary School, but after the First World War there was a kind of building expansion with the construction of some houses that belonged to people who owned forges, sawmills and mills in the vicinity.
Those were one-family houses and not collective ones like the “Casermù”, which is unique of its kind. Each activity was however linked to the iron, it is sufficient to think that a large part of the Vaso Ré (the Rè Duct) was made up of stones, as well as the building construction of the forge and also some parts related to the equipments.
For this reason are not to be forgotten the stone-cutters, who worked the large blocks of granite dragged by the stream Grigna, especially during big downpours or in particular cases of hydro-geological instability; with these stones were made the “culùne” (the pillars) used as piers for portals or rows of vines, steps, kerbs and ashlars, used for building houses.
The equipments used by the “picapréde” were made by forgemen; there were the “pònte” (steel tips) of various shapes and sizes, the “mahola” (the mallet) that hammered on the “pònte”, there were also the “künek” (the splitters) and the “léere” (the levers), used for cutting and dividing the stone ashlars.
Those six families of stone-cutters put all their efforts and their ability for building the “Casermù” and that is why even today you can admire a remarkable building work, especially for the economic opportunities that these craftsmen had at their disposal.
There is to be observed, for all its simplicity, the building of remarkable dimensions made up entirely of visible stones.
Its façade that overlooks the road has four floors plus the attic, interposed by eight openings on each floor in line with each other and clearly definite in their frames.
The south façade is remarkable, with the typical railings and then with the continuous balconies, supported by moulded brackets all made up of granite. Equally interesting are the two sides of smaller dimensions, especially for the selection and arrangement of the various stones.