Film - 'The Matrimandir: Honouring Piero Cicionesi, Part 2' at Savitri Bhavan

location_on Savitri Bhavan
access_time Mar 20, Mon @ 04:00 PM
visibility Published for Public
Piero worked for more than twenty years as the constructor and co-architect of the Matrimandir. In this video he shares his insights into the different aspects, tasks, and steps of the construction and of the Inner Chamber. His account is illustrated with the pictures of the events he is talking about. 
By the time the Mother had left her body in November 1973, the first lab and the foundations of the four pillars were completed. With great determination Aurovilians carried on the construction of the rips and pillars, the final ring on top, the lab, and the 24-hour concreting of the floor of the Inner Chamber. The concreting was done with the help of Ashramites at night and in a magical atmosphere. The pure white marble for the Inner Chamber was sourced from the Alps. Also, from Italy came the pipes for the 12 columns in the Chamber. 
Then problems started, because the chairman of the Sri Aurobindo Society wanted to have money from incoming donations to pay back loans. The situation escalated in 1979. Piero himself was badly beaten up, and the Aurovilians decided to build the Matrimandir all by themselves. In spite of all the difficulties and technical challenges, the work never stopped. 
Special tasks were there to find a company to manufacture the large-size clear crystal for the Inner Chamber with the challenge that the crystal has to be slowly cooled down for months and had to be polished, and to have Sri Aurobindo’s symbol made of pure gold. At last, both were produced in Germany. 
Then Piero himself worked out the construction of a heliostat that would capture sunrays using special lenses. He also spent many years on the triangulation of the outer structure of the Matrimandir and Roger Anger was happy, when he came back in 1988 and saw the triangulation, a very light and elegant structure. Finally, in 1992 the crystal was positioned on Sri Aurobindo’s symbol and the Inner Chamber opened. 
Piero had been fully engaged in diverse and immensely complex tasks that required a wide range of skills and knowledge ranging from mathematics to optics, and engineering to architecture. Many special thanks and sincere appreciation are due to Piero and Gloria – as well as to all those who laboured to create the marvel that is Matrimandir. 
Interview by Francois Gautier, 2015. Edited by Yatra Arts Media, Auroville. Duration: 70min. 
Monday, March 20, 2023 at 4pm at Savitri Bhavan
 Everyone is welcome
  • Organizing Group: Savitri Bhavan    

Everyone is welcome
  • Organizing Group: Savitri Bhavan