SEI PROPOSITI DI QUESTO MILLENNIO
Italian Lessons. Sei Spropositi di questo millennio offers a revisitation of the American Lessons six propositions for the new millennium written by Calvino in 1988: lightness, rapidity, exactitude, visibility, multiplicity and coherence. Turned upside down into six wrongs for this millennium: heaviness, slowness, inaccuracy, invisibility, oneness and incoherence.
These were the points that during two residencies, the self-managed residency in the Gottro Mountains (CO) and the online residency Embedded Art for social practice in a post pandemic future by UNIDEE with Fondazione Pistoletto, allowed us to create several collaborations and scattered communities, despite the fact that the pandemic we are experiencing has created many slowdowns and issues of no easy resolution.
These circumstances have led us to the search for new ways of creating bridges and alternative ways for therealization of collaborations that foreground and question the very figure of the artist as well as our present. In order to do so, the artist must maintain a fluid identity in order to deal with diverse tasks and functions through new models of self-management, alternative pedagogies. Although art continues to play a secondary role in this specific context, we believe it is necessary to bring forward a reflection and action that actively involves society.
The residency at the Pistoletto Foundation for the project Embedded Practice in a Post Pandemic Future (which turned out not to be so post). Here not having fellow residents due to limitations we decided to transfer the whole project online by organizing real lectures open to all project participants (45persons).
Each day we would talk about a chapter of American Lessons and then turn it around and talk about its opposite. The six dispropositions in this case became virtual discussion tables with artists and curators from all over the world, thus creating a sense of community and dialogue.
That brought us to involve not only our mates but also all the other residents: the format we would like to propose it to have a daily chat (as we would meet in the coffee downstairs) that start from a reflection on the book of Calvino but from there gives the chance to dialog and communicate together, something that seems becoming harder and harder. So we arrive to the idea to organize a daily meeting online on zoom at 18.00 for 30/40minutes, everyday focusing on a different blunders from the reverse of the memos of Calvino:
Monday > Heaviness Tuesday > Slowness Wednesday > Inaccuracy Thursday > Invisibility Friday > Uniqueness
Saturday > INCONSISTENCY <Final lesson>
The last day of the week, which corresponded to the chapter onacoherence that Calvin had been unable to write, wasdedicated to the creation of an onile event, the inconsistency show, with lacollaboration from the very people who attended our online lectures.
BLUNDERT <Final event>
Simultaneously with the end of the UNIDEE Program, we manage a final event where all 45 participants take a part of a collective cabaret BLUNDERET!
o as the cabaret is a form of entertainment that combines theatre, song, comedy and dance, we would like to give each of them up to 3 minutes of free zoom stage in which they could entertain us, bore us, demonstrate, take us for a walk, have fun, stress us out, show us your work, listen to music, watch a video, cook, or maybe surprise us. In short, do as they like it. It is called BLUNDERET because it is a cabaret that embraces mistakes, errors and sharing/doing things we’re not entirely certain of or very good at.
The first experience of the project Lezioni Italiane took place in a house lost in the mountains, perfect for isolation from the pandemic and for focusing on basic needs and community building: an opportunity to rethink and implement new modes of artistic self-management.
Here, together with 10 other young people, we were there for six days devoted respectively to each sproposals without imposed production obligations and dunques without deadlines.
The six days of self-managed residency were assigned the six spropositions discussed through the organization of round tables, dinners and nightly bonfires. Mundane actions, exercises and rehearsals gravitated to a possible work and unable to materialize except in the form of notes or events: the spectacle of a fundamental doubt about the very possibility of making art that leads to a playful notion of work.
The group and the cohabitation of the same space thus becomes a way of making art that induces the production of new solutions to no longer depend on traditional models as much as creating founding instances of practices and rituals.
Art no longer resides in the object, but in a series of methods that aim to improve the everyday through the construction of temporary situations and environments. These methods are commutators of the imaginary, employed in the cultural struggle against the normalization of lived time, modes of subversion. The artist becomes in this way an analyst of the real, a producer of events, relations and materials.
Italian Lessons, rather than a residency, turns out to be a form of resistance that uses art as a means of making life more interesting than art.
The book Italian Lessons is the container of a project that has its origin during a self-managed residency at Gottro (CO) that took place in September 2020. The research that began in the mountains developed in the following months with the research and creation of the material for this publication. The book contains a continuous reinterpretation of disproportions as scattered reflections, ironies, experimentations, concepts that through images and texts want to analyze our millennium and translate it in a disproportionate way at a time of profound change.
Seeking a closeness between visions and paths other than institutional ones, the six spropositions were the six threads that wove the concept of being together within new system: a way both to read the present but also to bring thoughts together in a pristine place. Each image and text in the volume is the result of individual and collective discussion: the resulting combination of these interventions reflects a desire to generate new associations and narratives.