09.06.2018 – 24.06.2018
A video exhibition curated by Barbara Polla
Together with Paul Ardenne, academic advisor
2000 Szentendre, Bogdányi utca 32
Within the framework of the Art Capital Festival, which is dedicated this year to Nature and Pathway, RECONSTRUCTING EDEN is a video exhibition centered on and echoing with the themes of nature, ecology, in and out of pathways, moving, driving, diving, walking, biking, flowing, sailing – living.
Whatever the outlook of so-called “eco-art”, the role of the “eco-artist” combines the position of friends of the earth and sounders of alarms. A deep humanism defines “eco-art”, inseparable from a revitalized vision of life and a re-discovered harmony between humanity and its environment. With the mesmeric moving images of nine international artists, “RECONSTRUCTING EDEN” is seeking for such a harmony, which is also vivid between the ghostly and genuine old stones of the ArtMill in Szentendre and the video images of new worlds to come, from “subatlantic” to Planet Mars.
“Walking art” is a form of eco-art that roots in art history long before ecology and has extended towards navigating art (Janet Biggs), biking art (Shaun Gladwell, Ali Kazma), driving art (Frank Smith) and more generally, as “exploring art” (Ursula Biemann, Janet Biggs, Clare Langan, Violaine Lochu, Miguel Angel Rios) as well as floating art (Janet Biggs, Clare Langan, Gianluigi Maria Masucci). As stated by Swiss video artist Ursula Biemann, climate change urges art, artists and us to get involved in dynamic changes and in constructing a common future equally rooted in cultural and natural narratives.
We are urged to imagine a sustainable, beautiful, inviting world: to reconstruct Eden and a post-human way of being in the world.
Two videos by Clare LANGAN surround Gianluigi Maria MASUCCI’sStarway to Eden (Fluire): The Floating World and Flight from the City, both of them created in collaboration with Icelandic composer Jóhann Jóhannsson. The Floating world immerses us in “post-apocalyptic images, shot, edited, and manipulated with technological subtleties to implore the terrible beauty of a world which seems familiar, but not yet encountered. We watch the skyscrapers of Dubai rising higher than clouds, follow a camera as it climbs the stony steps of Skellig Micheal; Mount Olympus trans-located from Greece to this remote place in the eastern Atlantic, a mystical spot once used by Monks in their search for the divine. This imagery suggests what Heidegger and the Greeks called aletheia, a place
where truth reveals itself…” (Heinz Peter Schwerfel). From one floating world to another, we move from the fascinating beauty of uncertainty to the emotive poetry of a floating-flying mother-daughter ballet. Flight from the City is a film about connection, love and transition; shot in the hot spring at Fludir in Iceland, it makes a perfect duo with Gianluigi Maria MASUCCI’s Fluire, a literal Stairway to EDEN. Through continuous cycles of observation-registration-elaboration-reproduction of the elements – in this case, water – Masucci builds an original rhizomatic pathway to reconnect with nature. Stairway to EDEN is a site-specific installation for the space of the ArtMill, composed of a projection that flows-flies above the triangular stairs of the building combining geometrical and numerical elements that evocate the archetype of vertical “Ascesa”, as an attempt to transform our impermanence into energy.