photo credits: © Pezo von Ellrichshausen

The wooden ladder is an implicit metaphor for the current situation.

Pezo von Ellrichshausen

On a remote farm at the foot of the Andes Mountains, diligent with the minutia of the construction of a cloister, our voluntary exile is shared with a local family of carpenters.


he reinforced concrete structure is rough, imprecise, with the natural imperfection of a hand made thing. The series of wooden ladders has become a record of that human trace. The modesty of these construction does not lie so much in the irregularities of nails and cuts, but in how they disappear behind the many cuts and nails of the surrounding formwork.


Every single ladder is unique, each one meant to solve a particular task. They are literal and metaphorically a mean to elevate our will. The rather schematic format, a couple of parallel beams with a regular sequence of transversal boards, is in itself an ideal passage. Yet, there is not only the transition from A to B, or even the corporeal projection of our size (its width given by shoulders, step by feet and rails by hands), but the very effort of doing so. The more weight it elevates; the more friction it resists.


According to the duration of the works on site, these basic artefacts have become slightly lighter and with softer edges, eroded by the same hands that improvised them as a tacit reply to gravity.