Almanacco Migratorio project, Argentiera, Sassari, Sardegna 2014
There are many abandoned towns, buildings falling to pieces, empty of life. A few artists were invited to visit such a place and galvanise those derilict sites, empty shells that seemed impossible to revive, through artistic intervention in the village of Argentiera.
In all, six artists, Marco Zamburru, Ines von Bonhorst, Sebastiano Benegiamo, Yuri Pirondi, Alberto Gori, Yasmin Dainelli and Pascal ancel Bartholdi participated in this explorative excavating mission culminating in several murals, installations, stories, poems, paintings, drawings, videos photographs, and a flash exhibition inside the factory facing the beach at the end of the main street.
The project began with a research in the history of the village. and the causes of its degeneration. The artists also took the opportunity to listen to the tales from the people they met. They entered the ruins, some of which were even half rebuilt and recorded them. As they did, they sensed the strange lingering atmosphere emanating from objects, paraphernalia, dust, left untouched for many years if not decades. In regards to those items that frankly most people would avoid, a kind of customizing recycling was put in action.
For instance, the hardened circular plaster remains at the bottom of a baket was used as a moon before which someone other than the artists unexpectedly lit a candle, or a bundle of wires into which an old beer bottle was placed with an origami paper boat swayed by the draft sweeping from the barren window of the ruin. Or again, a broken chair propped in front of a mural its shadow painted within, and the charcoal from a fire that ravaged a restaurant and a villa in mysterious circumstances, utilized as a medium to draw the outline of a composition, and so on.
The artists wished to emphasise the remains of the past and generate a new link between the anthropological nature of their discoveries and the emotional connection they formed as they travelled in the area through the architecture and the natural setting in which it lay. But the principal aim was to use the actual walls, the ground, the forms that had lost their meaning to engender a new meaning, in a way, to create a symbiosis between the work and the environment.
This attracted the attention of the dwellers who were curious and welcoming on the whole. A few worded their appreciation. Incidentally, one piece of work painted on an old sheet was taken and later put back in the exhibition space…we can hypothesise about the complexity of their motives. There was an awareness in each artist of the ephemeral quality of some of the works while others would last at least a year or two, perhaps as long as the ruins themselves. In a matter of three weeks, the inhabitants were seeing houses they had known from a very different perspective.
The project coincided with the festival in Sassari comprising mainly debates, readings, and music.This event brought many people to Argentiera, a great number of whom recorded the show of Almanacco Migratorio in a space usually ignored. It is evident that this was an unusual contribution to the cultural life of the area. It would in turn be conducive to the potential regeneration of the village, increasing the possibility of a rebirth and a re-population on a new basis.
Argentiera, the old mining town abandoned in the 60s would reappear on the map as a site for artistic residency and appeal to a new industry stimulating funding for more festivals.
The title of the project is a reference to the soul of a time and place, a journey into the meaning of an ancient memory but migration implies the settling of roots, a need for a more profound experience of a context and a more thorough communication with the spirit hidden within it.
Some of the work was not shown in its entirety and will continue to be developed until and during the next intervention.
Mnemonic City, at Xenos Gallery, Florence, June 2014
(Black and White film based prints)
Figures are composed within an architectural setting, they integrate the material of the structure. The human form demands geometrical solutions that in turn may repress its evolution in space. But these configurations emulate an understanding of a space already defined and re calculated, a spatial reconstruction designed to transport the imagination rather than the body. In the renaissance in particular, surface became the playground of perspectival virtuality masters such as Giotto, Masaccio, Piero della Francesca, and Ucello, but there is a Romaneque humor there, that cuts through the seduction of the tromp l’ oeil.
In one of the images, the figures are engulfed and dwarfed by the brutal machinery surrounding them, the darkness emanates from it and pours onto them like the deluge. In another, the Duomo is turned on its head, some wall details fail to match, but the characters float within this inverted monumentality like seraphim. In a third image, the cluster of figures seem to aspire to the heights of an inaccessible dome. There is no doubt these are contemporary individuals, yet their posture and the composition of the scene evoke disparate eras of art history, namely those encountered in Florence, in particular the Renaissance from its outset to its end although we can also detect Mannerism and Tenebrism including the art emerging from seventeenth century Netherlands. There is no direct reference however to any period in the development of art because the essence of these works resides in the very personal archetypes of the psyche. These are the initial findings of an ongoing research into the relationship of the soul with the city.
Mnemonic City. Il collettivo Magma a Firenze
Pascal Ancel Bartholdi, Anna Burel, Anna Capolupo, Yasmine Dainelli, William Howard, Rupert Jaeger, Yuri Pirondi, Jaime Valtierra, Ines Von Bonhorst
La Fondazione Biagiotti Progetto Arte è lieta di presentare Mnemonic City, un progetto del collettivo Magma nella città di Firenze. Il collettivo, nato nel 2009, ha sede a Londra ed è composto da artisti provenienti da ogni angolo del mondo. La parola “magma” è impiegata come metafora che richiama un continuo stato di ebollizione che permette la trasmutazione della materia in altri stati.
Il gruppo è caratterizzato da un’identità diversificata e modellata dai propri componenti e dalle loro competenze, includendo pratiche come la pittura, la scultura, la performance, musica, installazione, video o l’insieme di tutte queste discipline in azioni di arte performativa.
Data la natura “fluida” di Magma, il collettivo promuove una simbiosi creativa tra tutti i componenti e la collaborazione con artisti esterni, ottenendo una trasversalitá di espressioni e azioni creative, sia a livello locale che internazionale.
Attualmente Magma concentra la propria attenzione sullo spazio urbano al fine di svelare aspetti relativi alla natura umana. La città è vista come un luogo di studio,
comprensione, interpretazione e rappresentazione del flusso della vita e dei cambiamenti del nostro tempo. L’istituzione di questo dialogo artistico con la città prevede lo sviluppo di spazi creativi e di scambi in cui temi quali l’identità, la memoria, l’immagine, la realtà, dentro ad un contesto inevitabilmente sociale e urbano, sono liberamente esplorati e sviluppati.
I temi esplorati da Magma e dagli artisti coinvolti, vengono ricercati attraverso itinerari, dibattiti, interventi artistici, workshops, registrazioni audiovisive e incursioni attuate attraverso diverse città (Londra, Madrid, Parigi, Lisbona, Francoforte e adesso Firenze). Questi processi culminano con gli eventi che riflettono i fenomeni di esplorazione, di collaborazione e la trasformazione del lavoro svolto dagli artisti e dal collettivo nell’ambiente urbano.
Il collettivo continua la sua esplorazione immaginativa della città coinvolgendo il territorio fiorentino in un flusso di eventi che a partire da maggio 2013 coinvolgeranno la città di Firenze fino a tutto il mese di giugno. La Fondazione Biagiotti ha invitato i membri del gruppo ad esporre – in una sorta di preview del loro intervento in città – alcuni lavori concepiti per le precedenti edizioni di Mnemonic City. In mostra saranno quindi presentate opere eterogenee per poetica e realizzazione, ma tutte esemplificative dell’approccio trasversale del collettivo verso le tematiche specifiche delle città.
“Mnemonico” si riferisce infatti alla posizione dell’individuo all’interno dello spazio urbano, dove qualsiasi punto di riferimento nascosto nella memoria diventa significativo.
Il progetto Città Mnemonica si ispira all’allegoria della caverna di Platone, dove il mito esplora il rapporto dell’uomo con il proprio spazio, interrogandosi su cosa é reale o apparente. Magma ricerca l’identità del luogo favorendo un incontro personale ed emotivo con la città, un’appropriazione stratificata e attiva della sua morfologia, mediante una ricerca comune e integrata.
Magma proseguirà la propria esperienza fiorentina attraverso una serie di interazioni con collettivi locali, spazi espositivi e festival.
I patner coinvolti nel progetto sono: Fondazione Biagiotti Progetto Arte, Gattarossa, Monna Lisa Day, Visualcontainer, Lab Film Festival e Something Human.
Mnemonic City. Magma Collective in Florence
Pascal Ancel Bartholdi, Anna Burel, Anna Capolupo, Yasmine Dainelli, William Howard, Rupert Jaeger, Yuri Pirondi, Jaime Valtierra, Ines Von Bonhorst
Biagiotti Progetto Arte Foundation is pleased to present Mnemonic City, a project by Magma collective in the city of Florence. The collective was founded in 2009, it’s based in London and its artists are from every corner of the world.
The word Magma is used as metaphor: a constant image of evolution allowing the transmutation of form into other states. The group acts in a similar way to the changes that take place in molten matter, it tries to develop a trajectory of constant creative effervescence.
The group is characterized through its diverse and flexible identity, in particular through its own members, their skills and art forms, which are painting, sculpture, installation, video art, or all of them activated as one. Through the fluid and embracing nature of Magma collective, a platform is created where each artist has the opportunity to advance into the original thought by an exchange of ideas with other group members, developing between them opportunities, support and collaborations. This process generates a communion of creative actions and expressions in the form of local and international interchange.
The collective continues its imaginative exploration of the city involving the territory of Florence in a stream of events from May 2013 until the end of June. Biagiotti Foundation has invited members of the group to exhibit – in a sort of preview of their intervention in the city – some works created in previous editions of Mnemonic City. The exhibition will featured an heterogeneous body of work similar for poetic and creation, which will resume the approach of the collective to the specific issues of the city. ‘Mnemonic’ relates to specificity where the precise location within the city becomes meaningful. Magma therefore creates a series of signs by which artists and members of the audience can recognize a personal experience and significance and also learn about the history, mythology and other curiosities intrinsic to the space. The project Mnemonic City is inspired by Plato’s Allegory of the Cave, the myth explores the relationship between the man and his own space, wondering what is real or apparent. Magma searches the identity of the place by fostering a personal and emotional meeting with the city, creating an active and multi layered map of the environment through a joint research.
Magma will continue its Florence experience through a series of interactions with local collectives, exhibitions and festivals.
The partners involved in the project are: Foundation Biagiotti Progetto Arte, Gattarossa, Mona Lisa Day, Visualcontainer, Lab Film Festival and Something Human.
Biagiotti Progetto Arte
Via delle Belle Donne 39/r – 50123 Firenze
INTER-SCAPE PRESS RELEASE
Edmonton is like a doorway between country side and city where things are left unresolved, odd half constructions, quasi abandoned a lost land (re)conditioned by humans. As Artists, we also bear a responsibility by generating new structures. We are therefore questioning our own effect upon this inter-scape through the work derived from our interaction with its ruins, estranged edifices and samples of earth within this post suburban non residential mixture between motorways and factories. Through this event, Magma invites people to leave the city as they know it and experience a sense of possibility, in the dormant state of a place .Each artist will create a point of reference through various mediums, including video, installation, performance, music, photography, painting and more. After the focus on the market place with Moving streets, Magma Collective moves outward to the geographical margin of the city, zooming out after zooming in. The trail leads us from Ridley Road to the region of liminal memory, in Edmonton. We will be travelling inside Building Bloqs, the main venue, and outside along the canal and into the adjoining fields. Maps, including times of screenings and performances will be provided for each member of the audience. Behind this itinerary lies the idea of a creative re-mapping of the metropolis. Where do the signals end, from the stone sinking to the water circles? These signals, Magma follows right into the waste land, where remnants of nature collide with remains of industry. Here nature seems to be waiting in an in between zone to be entirely conquered or to re-conquer itself in its entirety, and art finds its place as a part of this process reflecting the same battle in human nature.
MAGMA COLLECTIVE MNEMONIC CITY
ZoneX, Ebb and Flow-The Phantom Promise
Winds, voices, gazes move in a strange vortex where memory colludes and collides with its nemesis.
Is nature as accidental and strategic as we are?
The blackness of the grass after the yellow and the blue heat has engulfed its abode. It smells of burnt flesh, as if Earth had grown a skin below the threshold.
In this place of banal desolation, ruins resemble one another, borne of the mother of progress, aborted by futility. Abandoned structures have a life of their own, and rather than compete with nature seem to become part of it. They have almost been assimilated by it. This circumstantial area is also resonant of a certain unknown nomadic emptiness, a reflection of an internal state of incertitude, a quiet torment lingering as the eye stretches all around its axis without finding rest. Here or there, one knows not which, we remember this sense of loneliness, a place which cannot be home.
Those semi ruins are like a forgotten language, because the words are broken, taken apart, reassembled hurriedly, then left mute and sour, begging for a history of their own. The solitary builder will attempt to gather the pieces and construct a new meaning. A phrase that rings differently, perhaps like the distant sound of a deep slow bell under water. The builder of sense will also instill an order made out of chaos, adding motion to the apparent stasis of these dysfunctional structures taking care not to remove or separate them from their altered environment. Therein, the dysfunctional immobility of these edifices transforms them into a vestige, in a sense, accidental art. They are the smoldering ends of a langue morte, a dead language. Les mots immobiles d’une conquête incomplète, the coagulated words of a conquest cold in its bed. Revolution of a stasis, a sideway glance into an uncertain past. The curved rhythm of a frozen semiosis. L’espace où l’esprit perd le sens du temps. Solidified ghosts, their medium of existence exudes from finite materials of metal, glass, bricks and mortar incorporated in the organism of an undefined context, or rather a field of human endeavor that has lost the definition by which we had recognized and measured our future. We observe the disintegrating signs of a questionable purpose. We cannot enter those moments; within lies an inaccessible past, like a petrified womb, the illusion of a glorious achievement contains it. A land awaiting its fate.
La ronde des mots cadavres, the dance of the cadaver words.
This is a raft of the Medusa, carrying the forlorn. It will not sink or reach a port.
Zone X, where X stands for the bygone and the unnamable, speaks of an impossible connection, the marriage of the quick and the dead, the neutered margin where the ebb and flow drag the passengers who marvel at the scene or remain unaware of the para-cultural signs…forbidden entry, keep out, danger…epitaphs, derelict, condemned, deserted towns; the phantom promise.
The land is where we bury the dead, but here the land has been buried beneath the weight of the human past, a past that hardly reached actuality, or only briefly, sporadically, half-heartedly.
These objects seem lost in space and lost in time; like tombs where the name has been scratched out. And even if a name appears, it will be meaningless to us; it is void of personal memory. At dusk, occasional mists rise. In the penumbra vast cages appear, the bones of olden beasts, gigantic and useless, fallen on an arid plain, starved and alienated. Their carcass stuns us with a frozen power. It is rare to find a window into their flank, let alone a door. They are condemned, uprooted yet ensconced in the plundered soil, the concrete block, the steel armature of urban mortality. We migrate in an endless dance, searching for a point of reference, a way home. Our gaze loses itself as phantoms appear and dissolve before us.
EDGE OF THE LAND
Doomed Gallery –the Magma collective European Multi Gallery project 2012
An evening of transgression art on the walls, Doomed Gallery 65/67 Ridley Road, E8 2NP,
Mnemonic Cityis exploring the idea of city as a receptacle, taking inspiration from Plato’s Myth of the Cave. The allegory explores the relation of humankind with their environment, questioning what is real and what appearance is. The theme explores notion of identity, fragmentation and the idea of shadow.
From the concept of the city, Magma moves to the concept of the cave and in doing so triggers a descent into the subterranean space of our latent mind. Magma’s own artistic evolution however defies Plato’s argument, since the work at hand affords the audience a form of knowledge through sensation rather than through the exposition of form as an idea to be unravelled by the intellect.
This opening gathers the works of the Magma collective and contributors:
Rupert Jager http://rupertjaeger.com/, Max Max, Rebbeca Cartwrigth, Eve Tenebaun, kanako saito
Art in the Flesh for sale.
Doomed Gallery is pleased to present a new show
The Art of Imperfection :
Negative/Positive, the unpredicted permutations of the photographic phenomenon
Curated by Ken Flaherty and Pascal Ancel Bartholdi
Photos of the amazing opening: Taken by Ania Sudol
This show includes three artists, Pascal Ancel Bartholdi, Ryuji Araki and Bernhard Deckert who each make use of the ambiguous and ambivalent photographic medium with a conscious disregard for flatness, reproductibility and static design entering the quantum realm by unifying the instant and the eternal the distant and the local, the probable and the uncertain.
Photography moving with a body, transmuted into a personal understanding of the Mandala through composition and natural forms or fathomed as a receptacle of visceral and psychic phenomena, with an accolade to the Dada artists, the anonymous visionaries of medieval times and the creative shamans who painted on rocks and bodies more than 15 thousand years ago.
Ken Flaherty opened Doomed Gallery in Dalston in 2003 to showcase emerging artists who primarily exploit photography in occasionally extra-ordinary ways and against the (static) grain.
Ryuji Araki Lives and works in London.
“Each object that I create has a human perspective, as you could imagine every object having a different appearance of style and feeling. These objects were composed with the thought of a particular position in society.
All creatures have their own consciousness and an irreplaceable lifetime. It is hard to think there is a solution, a better future for our society, however we cannot go back to the past; we, as humanity, will advance into the future”
Bernhard Deckert studied Photography in Germany where he focussed on abstract photography and photographic concepts. He took part in various exhibitions and symposia. In 2006 he moved to London and gained an MA in photography at LCC, university of the Arts, London in 2007. Since then Bernhard works in his own studio in London, practising commissioned photography as well as his own projects.
“I never believed in ‘the truth’ of the photographic media. The so-called pencil of nature is only a projection of one truth, we chose lenses and emulsion, film, paper, etc to mime what we see as true with our own eyes, or better what our brain makes out as reality.
I started working on contact-prints, 1:1 imprints on photographic paper and I used my own body as subject to explore the difference between posing in front of a camera to being directly in touch with the surface of the image.
In a very restricted way these images are true and perfect – but again, by practising the technique, the image-maker gains control over the process and the escape from the truth becomes rather tempting!
Every print is unique, there’s no failure and no perfect picture.
Pascal Ancel Bartholdilives and works in London. His research revolves around the paradox of personal reality versus institutional realism, the ambiguity and ubiquity of the photographic image while concentrating on the marginal question of emotive and psychic content intrinsic to visual expression in general and photography in particular.
His projects include monochrome chemical transformations, short cine-animations as well as stories, essays, performance and curatorial experiments. He exhibits regularly as part of a wider form of psychological and cultural exploration.
“The images included here reflect the theme of the show which is also an extension of my practice. They derive from several series and are brought together as a new combination of notes, a deliberate improvisation balanced between asymmetry, physicality, disintegration and affirmation.”
P.V Sunday 13.05.2012 from 6 to 9.30pm
Show open FROM 16. 05 to 03.06.2012
Gallery open from Wed to Sunday, 12 to 6pm
67 Ridley Road, Dalston, Hackney
HOUSE OF VOSTROVSKA
A Narrative of Objects
Photomorphosis: Live photography
“Concepts are coined and negotiable values; images are life” (C.G Jung)
Objects lie still; oracles still obscured by the mundane, tilting on the brink of confession. No longer usable by common mortals, they become symbols of a relationship between
one form of existence and another.
The objects evoked in this work guard the necropolis of the photograph until the stillness of an audience exhorts immanence, the “single substance” Spinoza elaborated upon. The object therein, despite having no physical form, is in fact complete within its inaccessible realm; it has become a new substance, a single entity of metals, salts and noetics that will refuse the imposition of any objective articulation. The latent narrative alters the context.
The object and the photograph are one.
Series of images on and off the wall.
OuterZone Art, just around the corner, in the dark alleys of the East End. A remedy to middle of the road half hearted excursions.