August 20, 2012
The autumn exhibitions programme at the Castello di Rivoli opens on September 15 with History I Never Lived Through (Indirect Witness), a major new exhibition entirely dedicated to young Italian art. The show, hosted in the large rooms on the third floor of the former Savoyard residence, has been planned and curated by Marcella Beccaria. This new and important exhibition has been made possible by the generous contribution of the Supporting friends of the Castello di Rivoli and itis realized with the Media Partnership by La Stampa and RAI – La Storia siamo noi.
Francesco Arena, Rossella Biscotti, Patrizio Di Massimo, Flavio Favelli, Eva Frapiccini, goldiechiari and Seb Patane are the protagonists of History I Never Lived Through (Indirect Witness); they have been chosen as being representative of a new generation of Italian artists who use the history of Italy as the subject of their work. Interpreted in a wide range of forms and choice of media, the works on display focus on some of the periods that have tragically marked the history of Italy over the 20th century.
Including works produced especially for the occasion and others that deserve renewed attention, the exhibition provides renewed impetus for the programme promoting young Italian art, already manifested by the Castello with the support of its Friends through a Scholarship for young Italian artists.
The exhibition will be accompanied by a packed programme of collateral events dedicated to Italian history and literature, and by a fresh vision of the facts and events analysed in the works.
Italian contemporary art has formed its own sphere of autonomy over the past thirty years, and it has been characterised by a gradual shift away from the country’s historical and political affairs. Those artists who have been exceptions to this tendency have in turn often been relegated to secondary positions and their works still await a more objective assessment.
Today a new generation of young Italian artists is coming to the fore with a vision of Italy as an essential area of investigation. These artists, who include Francesco Arena, Rossella Biscotti, Patrizio Di Massimo, Flavio Favelli, Eva Frapiccini, goldiechiari and Seb Patane, have all made names for themselves by creating works that, even in the wide variety of their artistic languages and expressions, have focused on some of the key events that shaped Italy in the twentieth century. From colonial ambitions to the years of terrorism, through to massacres and dark powers, the works created by these artists often refer to tragic,uncomfortable facts that still cast a shadow on the present day, in some cases continuing to divide public opinion. Several works concern events that took place before the artists were born or during their early childhood. The artists’ interest in these particular events in Italian history bears dramatic testimony to the way in which the past weighs heavily even on those who did not live through it. Opening up to a broader debate, the exhibition also examines the fraught relationship that ties the present to the past and to the process of reconstructing and interpreting history.
History I Never Lived Through (Indirect Witness) presents these artists for the first time in a coherent museum project. As well as specially made new works, the exhibition intentionally brings together some of the most significant pieces conceived by this generation of artists over the past five years, acknowledging them as key elements on which to write a new chapter on Italian art and to offer the general public possible new takes on present-day Italy.
March 23, 2010
February 24, 2010
Genealogy of Damnatio memoriae “The Fear Society” 53 Venice Biennale Pavilion of Urgency, Murcia, Spain.
November 12, 2009
November 12, 2009
Photo: Davide Franceschini
In an article published in the Corriere della Sera on November 14th 1974, Pier Paolo Pasolini wrote: “I know why I am an intellectual, a writer who tries to follow everything that happens, to know everything that is written, to imagine whatever is not known or is kept secret; who coordinates even quite distant facts, who puts together the disorganized and fragmentary pieces of a whole coherent political situation, who establishes logic where only arbitrariness, madness, and mystery seem to hold sway”
Goldiechiari’s Genealogia di Damnatio Memoriae 1965-1981 reasserts the role of intellectuals – whether writers, artists, journalists, or academics – in restoring a critical representation of reality.
The installation in this room is part of a series that examines recent political history by placing together dates, places, and laws that refer to the state’s responsibility in what was known as the “strategy of tension” period, and the role of Italy during the Cold War.
The carnage that stained Italy is the sad and tangible trace of the weakness of democracy in Italy, a country that was defeated in the Second World War and found itself the battle ground between two great blocks, the U.S.A. and the Soviet Union, and ideologies such as that of the Catholic Church and the secular aspirations of the newly founded Republic balanced, as it was, between removing Fascism and the anomaly of being the western democracy with the largest Communist party.
In this work the massacres that marked our recent history create a chronology of terror that is etched like an open wound on the bark of two trees and distributed between the two successive phases of the strategy of tension as indicated at the time by Pasolini: a first, anti-communist phase (Milan 1969), and a second anti-fascist one (Brescia and Bologna 1974). These are events we all know of, but, placed in a sequence and related together as though they were part of a still incomplete cycle, they are even more frightening.
The genealogical tree that Goldiechiari has created is, by definition, still in the making: the plant can grow and other names might be added over the years, and researches might allow us to understand how much our recent present is rooted in a past we still do not know enough about. Trees can multiply and become a memory-forest, a Dantesque wood that indicates, in images, the responsibility the powers-that-be have in determining, not just the history of a country, but of individual citizens.
As a conclusion to, or perhaps a comment on, the installation, the photograph Senza Titolo (2009) seems to ask us: how we can commemorate those who died for their ideas if we are unable to assume our responsibilities?
«Io so perchè sono un intellettuale, uno scrittore che cerca di seguire tutto ciò che succede, di conoscere tutto ciò che se ne scrive, di immaginare tutto ciò che non si sa o che si tace; che coordina fatti anche lontani, che mette insieme i pezzi disorganizzati e frammentari di un intero coerente quadro politico, che ristabilisce la logica là dove sembrano regnare l’arbitarietà, la follia e il mistero» scriveva Pier Paolo Pasolini in un articolo pubblicato sul Corriere della Sera il 14 novembre del 1974.
Genealogia di Damnatio Memoriae 1965-1981 di goldiechiari ribadisce il ruolo degli intellettuali – siano essi scrittori, artisti, giornalisti o accademici – nel restituire una rappresentazione critica della realtà.
Il lavoro prende il suo nome dalla pratica della damnatio memoriae, che in lingua latina indica l’uso nell’antica Roma di punire il condannato con l’eliminazione di tutte le memorie ed i ricordi che lo riguardavano.
L’installazione presentata in questa sala fa parte di un ciclo che rilegge la storia politica recente mettendo in relazione date, luoghi e leggi che richiamano alla responsabilità dello Stato nella strategia della tensione, e al ruolo dell’Italia nella Guerra Fredda.
Questa genealogia parziale non vuole essere una ricostruzione storica: l’utilizzo di uno strumento familiare come l’albero genealogico permette di rappresentare le stragi e gli omicidi come una linea di sangue comune, tra memoria e rimozione.
Le stragi che hanno insanguinato l’Italia sono la traccia dolorosa e tangibile della debolezza della democrazia in Italia, paese che è uscito sconfitto dalla secondo conflitto mondiale e che si è trovato ad essere terreno di scontro tra due grandi blocchi, gli USA e l’Unione Sovietica, ideologici come la Chiesa cattolica e istanze laiche della neonata repubblica, in bilico tra il rimosso del fascismo e l’anomalia di una democrazia occidentale con il più grande partito comunista occidentale.
Le stragi che hanno scandito la nostra recente storia compongono in questo lavoro una cronologia del terrore incisa come fosse una ferita ancora viva sulla corteccia di due alberi e distribuita nelle due fasi successive della tensione indiviuduate fin da allora da Pasolini: una prima, anticomunista (Milano 1969) e una seconda antifascista (Brescia e Bologna 1974). Sono eventi che conosciamo, ma composti in sequenza e in relazione gli uni con gli altri come fossero parte di un ciclo che ancora non è completo sono ancora più raggelanti.
L’albero geneaolgico che goldiechiari hanno realizzato è per definizione in fieri: la pianta può crescere, e altri nomi potrebero essere aggiunti nel cosro degli anni e delle ricerche che ci portano a capire quanto il presente affondi le radici in un passato del quale, benchè vicino, ancora non sappiamo abbastanza. Gli alberi possono moltiplicarsi e diventare un bosco della memoria, una foresta dantesca che restituisce in immagine le responsabilità che il potere ha nel determinare non solo la storia di un paese, ma anche quelle dei singoli cittadini.
A conclusione, o commento dell’installazione, la fotografia Senza Titolo (2009) sembra interrogarci su come possiamo commemorare chi è morto per un’idea, se non siamo in grado di assumerci le nostre responsabilità?
October 28, 2009
Parco dei Principi
In the Parco dei Principi hotel, Rome, a conference is held to discuss the theme
“Revolutionary War”; it is organized by the Alberto Pollio Institute of Military Studies,
and financed by the REI office of the SIFAR secret services. Its underlying assumption is the danger of the Italian Communist Party coming to power and the need by a
section of the right to take on responsibility for reacting to such a danger
and, in this activity, to join forces with particularly “sympathetic” parts of the state:
men of the secret services, the carabineers and neo-fascist
members of the army. In the opinion of some, this conference marks for Italy the planning and start of the “strategy of tension” and “opposing extremes”, part of a wider
international operation, “False Flag” or “Operation CHAOS”, aimed at
opposing the advance of Communism in the world.
Bombs in Milan
A bomb explodes in the Fiat booth in the Milan trade fair,
wounding six; the explosion took place at 7 p.m., after the
fair’s public closing time. A second, unexploded bomb is found
in the central station.
Attacks on Trains
8 bombs, placed on various trains, explode, wounding 12. A further two
unexploded bombs are discovered in Milan’s central station
and in the Santa Lucia station in Venice
A bomb explodes in the headquarters of the Banca dell’Agricoltura In
Piazza Fontana in Milan. 17 people die and another 88 are wounded. The
same day bombs also explode in Rome, in the Banca Nazionale di Lavoro
in Via Veneto, wounding 16 people, and at the Altare della Patria.
The anarchist railway worker, Giuseppe Pinelli, is arrested as part of the
Inquiries into the slaughter in Piazza Fontana. During an interrogation by the
police commissioner, Luigi Calabresi, Pinelli dies after falling from a fourth floor
window of the police station.
The Gioia Tauro Massacre
A few hundred metres from the Gioia Tauro railway station there is an explosion
resulting in the derailment of the Palermo-Turin fast-train, known as
the “Treno del Sole” or Sun Train. The attack results in 6 mortalities and over 60 wounded.
The Borghese Coup
During the night between 7 and 8 December 1970 there is an all-out attempt at a military coup which only lasts a few hours as it is called off before becoming a real insurrection.
A group from the Avanguardia Nazionale movement gathers in the building sites of Montesacro, owned by the builder Remo Orlandini who is close to the secret services headed by Vito Miceli. Just outside Rome, an armed column of forest-rangers from Cittaducale, near Rieti, await orders. Another group of neo-fascists, led by Junio Valerio Borghese, ex-commander of the X Mas, or 10th Assault Vehicle Flotilla, enter the armoury of the Home Office accompanied by Aviation General Giuseppe Casero, the neo-fascist
Sandro Saccucci, and Police Major Salvatore Pecorella.
The Peteano Massacre
After an anonymous tip-off to the carabineer station in Gorizia a white
Fiat Cinquecento car is found with two holes in the windscreen. Three
carabineers try to open the vehicle’s bonnet; the car explodes
killing them all, while a further two are severely wounded.
Milan Police Station
The self-styled anarchist Gianfranco Bertoli throws a bomb at the
Milan police station killing four people.
During a trade union demonstration in Brescia, a bomb explodes in
Piazza della Loggia. Eight persons are killed and 94 are wounded.
The Italicus Train
A bomb explodes in the Italicus train running between Rome and Munich. In
coach number five 12 people die and 48 are wounded.
The Reale Law
The principle writer of this law is the Justice Minister Oronzo Reale; he is a member
of the Italian Republican Party. It regularizes the rights of the law enforcement agencies
to use arms, extends the use of preventive custody, even if the accused is not caught in the act, and in fact allows preventive custody for 96 hours within which the judicial authorities
can issue a validation order.
And, finally, it regulates the use of helmets and other elements that might make
Pier Paolo Pasolini
On the night between 1 and 2 November Pasolini was beaten to death
and run over by his own car on the beach near the Ostia seaplane base.
The Via Fani Massacre
At 9.15 a.m. in Via Mario Fani in Rome, a Red Brigade terrorist group kidnap
Aldo Moro, president of the Christian Democrat party. In the attack the
five members of his escort are killed.
The Italian government approves the first of the special laws (decree law n. 59)
providing for, amongst other things, life imprisonment for kidnappers in the case of the hostage’s death; an extension of police detention-powers and of phone-tapping; the
possibility of being interrogated without a lawyer.
At 1.30 p.m., in Via Michelangelo Caetani in Rome, Aldo Moro’s body is
discovered. The corpse of the president of the Christian Democrat party is in
the boot of a red Renault 4.
At 10.25 a.m., in the crowded 2nd class waiting-room of Bologna station,
a high-explosive bomb is set off. The blast is so violent
that part of the building falls on the passengers inside.
85 people lose their life while another 147 are wounded.
The Cossiga Law
The law provides heavy sentences for those judged guilty of
“terrorism” and gives the police further powers.
Confiscation of the P2 Lists
The investigating magistrates Gherardo Colombo and Giuliano Turone, in the course of
an inquiry into the alleged kidnapping of the Sicilian lawyer and businessman
Michele Sindona, search Licio Gelli’s house in Arezzo, “Villa Wanda”, and his factory, “Giole”, in Castiglion Fibocchi near Arezzo; the operation, undertaken by Colonel Bianchi of the Financial Police, finds in the “Giole” archives a list of almost a thousand members of the P2 Masonic lodge, among them the commanding officer of the Financial Police itself, Orazio Giannini (membership number 832). Michele Sindona himself is also on the P2 list thus confirming the suspicions of the