A true stone artist, Paolo talks to us about his beginnings, his arrival to Canada, the country he loves because it has given him so much. Paolo was a peacekeeper, in the army, Special Forces as a teenager and into his 30’s, working for the government studying civil engineering in college back in Italy, originally from Viciano, on the edge of Naples. Paolo’s construction career began with him studying history, studying techniques from centuries back, studying what and how and why Michelangelo did what he did with the works of art that we all know so well.
Paolo’s education and scope of work involves going to and choosing blocks of stone direct from the quarries, understanding true book match cutting, slab match cutting or random. Planning the cuts, setting up the cuts, quarry manufacturing is a generational skillset, the father teaches the son and they look at the mountain, they assess the best place to begin, do they cut into or up the mountain? There is a real art to diamond rope cutting blocks of stone from a mountain.
Everyone thinks that natural stone will never end but it’s difficult to say, some say there is another 300 years’ worth but if you consider technology and machinery being able to remove the stone faster it could be 100 years. There is a monopoly on the stone, the price of stone fluctuates with the supply and demand. Paolo is always nervous about his projects, he takes that nervousness and embraces it, it challenges him, he uses his experiences throughout the years to solve things, he’s learned how to manipulate the physical properties of stone. Paolo wants to cross his limits, he wants to test, educate, experiment, challenge and take stone to new heights, he wants to put his hand in the fire, he wants to see how things are and will they last based on his calculations and experiences. Every tile trade must understand structure and where the structure and or point loads are and extra care should be placed at those points especially when installing large format tiling and stone. Paolo has never worked a day in his life, because he loves what he does, it’s his passion.
Paolo discusses installing marble slabs in garages, that’s right, full slabs of marble on garage floors, he has clients that request, or desire, or expect to drive over marble, not concrete, we discuss. He shares his technique of installing dry pack “fresh” to achieve 1000 pounds per square inch.
Any trade interested in learning more about stone and Paolo’s world of stone, you might want to consider reaching out to him and shadow him, see for yourself what he does on the job sites. Paolo has a lot of respect for history and learning from the past teachers, some were engineers, most weren’t but they understood how to separate the body by the spirit and become free to think of new ways, better ways to design and build. He has clients ask him,”make my wife cry tears of happiness”. One last piece of advice, Paolo never looks at anyone’s age, he looks at everyone as a source, a source of knowledge, everyone is a source to make others better. Lastly, Paolo shares another great passion of his, food, and he’s been working on a mobile pizza stone oven and great quality pizza, must listen to how he talks about pizza. One more last note, Paolo discusses his custom slab and mosaic work that he’s developed and he shares how he does it. Thank you, Paolo, what a pleasure having you on the show.
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What an amazing show full of passion, I thank you so much Paolo for sharing so much on marble, stone, restoration and fabrication and more, educating our listeners on everything to do with your trade, and skills, the true artist you are. Thank you. Find Paolo on IG @fogliatile and contact Paolo on his email at email@example.com