Artist: Rita Canarezza & Pier Paolo Coro
Exhibition title: Spaceship Command
Curated by: Alessandro Castiglioni
Venue: Listen To The Sirens | Space for Contemporary Art, Montegu Bastion, Gilbratar, UK
Date: December 9 -, 2014
Photography: Courtesy of Listen To The Sirens
The exhibition presents a single coherent body of new productions with their roots in the poetic of the duo from San Marino, focused on relations between artistic, anthropological and geographic practice. The exhibition is a series of references and reflections, which for over a decade have characterized their specific research into the relations and the nature of the “Little State”, in the inexhaustible identity issues related to it.
Hence the idea of constructing a new, unexpected synthesis of this reflection through a mysterious and immediate image: that of “unidentified flying objects”.
Suspended in this way between sight and vision, imagination, scientific and para-scientific documentation, the artists in the exhibition space will construct a series of installations that evoke (retro)future imagery, a clearly alien mysterious and undefined elsewhere.
The starting point for the project is the artist’s book Salon Devolution. Short Stories of non-Independence (2013), which saw Rita Canarezza & Pier Paolo Coro start a dedicated research into the visions, inexplicable and mysterious, which often occur above the towers of San Marino and the creation of a series of performances in which they made signals with their bodies inspired by the movements landing signal officers make in directing planes to land on aircraft carriers. These signals seem intended to summon an indefinite otherness. Perhaps by looking for UFOs, perhaps extra-terrestrials, at any rate by expressing the need to indicate an elsewhere: a way out of the small confines of their country, by querying images and visions related to cultural stereotypes and clichés, or the expectation of a diversity to be related to their own context.
This context in particular for part of the new video that gives the exhibition its title: Spaceship Command. The production is set in the garden of the small Villa La Califfadesigned in 1957 by the architect Luigi Moretti (1906-1973), in which the functionalist architectural roots and the relational-circular dimensions of the intimate environment blend with a magical, utopian space.
This elsewhere corresponds in more general terms to Western civilization’s urge to identify a mysterious place in which to position and cram all the unknown and inexplicable that their culture is unable to absorb. In the Middle Ages this was the forest, a place populated by nymphs and dragons; in the nineteenth century the myth of the sea deep, from Moby Dick to Verne’s Nautilus; in the modern world it is the turn of outer space.
As early as 1989 Jacques Brosse wrote: “Now the earth, too well known, is not enough. The strangers come from outside, from other planets, even other galaxies. The aliens of science fiction novels and comic books […] are our ogres and fairies. The unknown today is no longer the forest, it is space.” (J. Brosse,Mythologie des arbres,1989).
We wish to thank Rosalia Busignani and Stefano Blanca Sciacaluga for the production of the works.
The activity of Pier Paolo Coro and Rita Canarezzais characterized by a specific hybridization between research in anthropology, documentary languages, performance, and visual formalization. The largest and most complex project by Canarezza & Coro over the years, starting in 2004, is Little Constellation:a network devoted to the knowledge and dissemination of artistic practice in the Small States and Micro Geopolitical Areas of Europe that comprises participation by more thanforty partners in nineteen different countries and the membership of over sixty artists. Their work has been hosted by: C.C.A. Center for Contemporary Art Kitakyushu, Kitakyush, Japan 1999, Manifesta 3, 2000, Swiss Cultural Institute SIS, New York 2002, Musée d’Art Moderne Grand-Duc Jean, Mudam, Luxembourg, 2011, National Gallery of Iceland, Reykjavik, 2013.