Barolo | The Call of the Wild

Upstaging viticulture in Barolo over the next few days is the annual Festival of Literature and Music known as Collisioniwith an impressive line-up of international writers and musicians and a veritable horde of oversized animals – or the likenesses thereof. This year’s edition of the Festival has a wild creatures theme and is hosting a rally of Cracking Art‘s colourful animal statues in recycled and recyclable plastic. Larger than life and defying you not to grin, a throng of over 300 snails and wolves, frogs and meerkats have invaded the streets, squares and even balconies of Piedmont‘s wine capital.

With not a little help from Alfa Romeo. The car manufacturer has joined forces with the six international artists of Biella-based Cracking Art Group in a promotional installation-cum-competition which involves a new MiTo supermini crammed full of the plastic frogs, and guessing how many fit in there in the venerable tradition of the elephants-in-a-mini (or Fiat 500 over here) riddle. The Cracking Artists – themselves enfants sauvages – come fresh from the huge success of two Milanese installations, which saw blue snails overrun the roof of the Duomo and a plague of brightly-coloured frogs in the Darsena dei Navigli – Milan’s canal docks.