28 Oct 11 Nov 2017
(a metastable state)
Valentina Lapolla, Rachel Morellet, Eva Sauer, Tatiana Villani
You and your friends are cordially invited to the opening of the exhibition on Saturday,
28 October at 6.30 pm.
Opening hours: Tuesday to Friday 2 to 6 pm and on appointment
Rachel Morellet, Soap Opera, 1998-2017, in collaboration with Florent Nicolas
Eva Sauer, Les derniers rêves des gardiens de la nuit, 2017
Tatiana Villani, LET'S PLAY!?, 2017
Valentina Lapolla, La battaglia dell'Amba Aradam, 2017
SKUMAZ _ a metastable state
Text by Eleonora Farina
Pavillon, Villa Romana
In the anthropocenic now we are facing, during an era when the anthropos effects and modifies the Earth’s geology and its ecosystems, foam and its way of mutating are quintessential elements for building bridges: (instable) bridges among people, (instable) bridges among situations and events. Overwhelmed by interpersonal relationships and globalized mass communication, we need to increment our capacity of resilience as much as possible in order to create our own sphere of personal affects and socio-political references.
The natural element of the foam, gas pockets trapped in a liquid, propagates limitlessly in a very rhizomatic way: Starting from the simplest mathematical-geometrical structure, the triangle, it expands until very big polyhedral networks and complex systems. Fascinating foam patterns are present everywhere in nature, in soap bubbles as in sponges or beehives; and it is from such naturality after the catastrophes of the war period that contemporary man has begun to invent and to build the world we are experiencing today.
Precarious as foam is the sculpture Les derniers rêves des gardiens de la nuit (2017) by Eva Sauer, clay cone of (un)known origin, glass bubbles of (meta)stable balance. Reminding the Zangbeto figures in traditional Western African societies, the work’s delicate shapes unveil complex networks made of thin films in foam as well as of past and present knowledge in trance state. The ancestral power of unexplainable – lost in contemporary humankind – within you can find the essence of our living planet and of our being on this earth. Such imaginative exploration of nature was indeed at the core of the architectonic researches for the geodesic domes by the American inventor Richard Buckminster Fuller, today part of modern radar stations and tensile structures, thanks to his omni-comprehensive view of the finished world and all its endless possibilities.
The video-project Let’s play?! (2017) by Tatiana Villani metaphorizes the transmigration of people due to environmental or socio-political reasons in the form of a liquid foam that floats between countries and cultures. With our occidental eyes, the migration of communities across the sea is a perpetuum moving of s-personified human beings on the waves of our coasts – as every table game for children could be. And in it we loose all the empathic sensibility due to our perennial exposure to news and images from the mass media and much more the Internet. In contemporary fluid society the utopian imaginary of the World Wide Web, invented thirty years ago in the CERN laboratories, has produced an endless network of communication and information: illusorily, we have access to everything and everyone; we live in a macro-cosmos, full of possibilities that can increase in a rhizomatic, borderless way but that can also, on the opposite, create a short-circuit of fake news and emotional loneliness.
The complexity of relations is evident in the installation of Rachel Morellet, Soap Opera (1998-2017), conceived in collaboration with Florent Nicolas as a soapy transparent skin of amorous tensions. The title ironically refers to the smallest molecule of our civilization: the couple, with all the intricacies of sharing the emotional and physical singularities of two people towards building up a broader society. Creating a network of social relationships is a Hybrid Web (2012- ongoing), thus quoting the series of sculptures by the Argentinean artist Tomás Saraceno, where protagonists are different arachnid species that during their life forge countless models of expansive nets. Like a human being, through silk spiders construct a space as a very act of becoming community: starting from the I in relation to the Other, in a fragile and metastable balance that characterizes both man as well as other living beings.
The natural cycle of mankind is addressed in the multi-media installation The battle of Amba Aradam (2017) by Valentina Lapolla, where the vital activity of bacteria in the soil – hosted by the porosity of concrete and polyurethane foam – activates a mechanism that produces energy, which in turn creates an electronic circuit of light sketching a photograph from the Second Italo-Ethiopian War shot by the artist’s uncle. A machine célibataire of Duchampian meaning, where natural and artificial, resistance and transformation, perceptible and imperceptible are two sides of the same Markov diffusion process of information. The nowadays hyper-connectivity and the fusion of information and body is the constituting subject of the multi-sensorial installations Movie-Dromes (1963-65) by the American experimental filmmaker Stan VanDerBeek, a geodesic dome whose interior served as a projection surface for an outstanding display of instant reference material via transmission television and telephone.
Four women artists address our contemporaneity through a deep analysis of everyone’s common humus: war and migration, life and death, singularity and relationship, obscure and manifest. Four different backgrounds and viewpoints intertwining together in a shared, mutual sensibility that opens up to the metastable stability of the collective project skumaz.