“Stairways to Sunset”
From the summit of Sete Cidades, on Sao Miguel Island, Portugal, a track of sweeping paths descend into a volcanic basin brimming with brilliant green waters. A sense of vastness and tranquility lulls the eye, the only clues to the valley’s volcanic past lie in its craggy craters and razor-sharp hills. That, and of course the translation of its most picturesque lookout spot — ‘Grota Do Inferno’.
We set out to recreate the unique stillness found looking out from Portugal’s Sete Cidades — the shadow of its volcanic activity now only a whisper in the twisting tracks. Varenna’s infusion of winding veins recreate the paths stretching into the valley below and out, seemingly into the clouds — some clear and defined and others barely discernible, as if blending into the dazzling beams of a midsummer sunset.