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WHEN THE HEART WHISPERS (How it all started on Valentine's day 2015)

"Listen to your heart and trust its guidance."

This was the voice that guided me in early 2015 to conceive the Pastamadre project and organize the first Fresh Pasta Workshop. 

I was in the midst of an existential crisis. My previous life as a visual artist had given me many joys and important experiences, but growing frustration and discontent were clear signs that that phase was at an end and a change was needed. 

What to do, where to start again? 

Thirty-five years old and the void before me. 

I had worked for a year on an exhibition making a large installation with different grain seeds.

A tiny kernel of durum wheat whispered the answer to my heart, "I am the beginning of every new life, look at how many possibilities are contained in me, trust my potential."

un chicco di grano su una mano aperta

"I am the beginning of every new life"

And suddenly in that grain of durum wheat I saw my life: my childhood in Southern Italy, the endless fields of wheat, the wheat becoming flour, the big table in my grandmother's kitchen, the many hands busy transforming as if by magic that golden semola into genuine, simple and healthy nourishment.

And in that seed I saw joy and shared labor, love and patience, family, feeling at home. 

In that tiny seed I saw everything that until that moment I had taken for granted. A richness that life abroad teaches you to reevaluate. 

So I said to myself, what do you need to share with others these family experiences that you now know how to appreciate as great gifts?

14/02/2015 - The first Pastamadre-Workshop

In the studio where I made my artworks there was a small kitchen, a capacious room with a large table. I borrowed enough chairs, bought a couple of big pots and pans, glasses, plates and cutlery for 12 people. I shared my idea with friends and acquaintances and organized my first fresh pasta workshop on 14th of February, 2015.

14/02/2015 - The first Pastamadre-Workshop

Everyone was happy and content and I personally felt reborn, nourished in body and soul.

At the time, I never imagined that seed would grow to where it is now. 

The future was too far away and scary. So I remained open to new possibilities with curiosity, without looking too far ahead, focused on what the present moment required from time to time. I knew what I no longer wanted from the past and this helped me to let myself be surprised by the new that was coming.

14/02/2015 - The first Pastamadre-Workshop

Pastamadre was thus born from the heart and grew out of its infinite strength, its ability to go beyond reason, to open up, to make room for the unknown, the unpredictable, what has yet to take shape and that is why it is so scary. Following the voice of the heart requires trust, a lot of patience, and above all a lot of courage because sometimes the heart whispers crazy ideas, against the grain, or "too simple" for the head to consider them worth following.

So my dear friends, remember as I do what nature teaches us: everything begins with a tiny seed, in which is contained an infinite potential just waiting for the best conditions to develop.

Listen to the heart and follow its guidance, and although its voice is sometimes frightening, respond with courage and confidence. Our task is to water and nurture with care, patience and love what we want to see grow.

Written from the heart, Maria-Lucrezia


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