The image on the invitation could act as a deterrent. The cult of domesticated nature (whether Chinese or Japanese, here in the form of a Buddha-pear coated in red) doesn’t want to assume any recognizable cultural guise. It wants to introduce something else.
Because images, and not only Marco’s, always want something. They could be saying, for in- stance, that the effect of humanity over nature is so influential and by now so definitive that a new geological era is to be announced. They could be announcing: Ladies and Gentlemen the Holocene, the era we are accustomed to since 11.700 years, is over. Over! Over to make way for the Anthropocene through the fine particles of radioactive waste breaking up into the atmosphere thanks to nuclear bombing tests and to impossible stockings, via the chocking seas due to oceans of plastic, among the dust of billions of chicken (bones) dramatically bred in industrial batches.
Pause for a minute, and picture these images. And now, without forgetting them, try to let them go, and let yourself be guided by the will of new images all dressed in red.
Dream of this scene. There are (roughly) thirty non professional sculptors (read: amateur) around a man. He is white, male, Caucasian, with strong features, longish hair, a beard à la page, proba- bly in his thirties. This crowd is visually interpreting him, while having produced him conceptually. But, He, is an artist. Actually, much more than that. He, is (tadam!) the Artist.
Now get out of your dream and look at these heads. Those are him, them, those are us. All white, all male, all pretty. Maybe a critique to a Western patriarchal system, essentially Eurocentric? Or is it a reference to the ancient issue of the not centrality (and not exceptionality) of the artist? Wait, look a bit closer. There is also some weed (for disambiguation: not the one you smoke). Instead, that weed that sneaks in between marbles and granites, that reaches to the most preserved and precious things. We thought it was indomitable, chaotic by definition, when instead it is there be- cause he, the Artist, wanted it to be there. We thought it was insignificant, and instead it is here, crowning his and our head (or oeuvre?). The canonical parameters of value attribution reveal themselves in all their fictionality. Open your eyes, now, and reflect. The possible associations, here, should be your oeuvre.
But – the Artist tells you – excessive coherency often ends up being too obvious, unrealistc, un- natural. After all, also the realm of individual imagination has its stylistic rules. Now two panels, made out of sand, of bronze, of bronzed sand (or something along these lines) cover (what seem to be) moving images. The movement isn’t theirs, instead it’s mine, and it’s yours. We move, and they follow, in an incredibly simple and banal shift of prospective – the one that has, always and inescapably, the power to shape, to mold, things and the world. And under this cortex of chemical and physical layerings there she is, the image, impassive and present. But also she, the image, also she is shaped by me and you, despite the fact that her subjectivity, strongly independent from ours, has since long been ascertained. She doesn’t need to be entirely decoded. The image is whispered, insinuated, moreover stands on a potato and other edible fruits and vegetables. Here, a poem of surrealist memory seems to be taking place.
You are confused, I know, I am too. Also this is quite predictable. But finding a narrative, whether linear or complex, takes time, because the white little stones in the forest have been swallowed by global pollution, because most of your relationship with what is edible is mediated by supermar- kets and restaurants, because you know what sounds a wolf produces thanks to Wikipedia.
At the center of the world we still annoyingly find him, the man (the Artist?). So centered to have put the world at the margins, standing still, fragile, impoverished, and apparently powerless. Even if, we hope, still capable of imagination. Because its incredible and incomparable imagination will be the last to burn. Or maybe the only one to burn will be him, the man. And the world will have fun in reviving. Or it will revive the dinosaurs. And I wonder if this is what him, the Artist, wanted to tell us.
asnatureintended by Marco Giordano
Through November 5
Courtesy of Frutta, Rome
Photo by Roberto Apa