Luca Rossi

BEING THERE 

from monument to document  
wherever you are, prada foundation, serpentine gallery, sénanque abbey, helvetia wellness centre


text by Kari Altmann

coordination and communication by Enrico Morsiani

“If I imagine, I see. What else do I do if I travel? Only the extreme weakness of the imagination justifies that one must move to feel”
Fernando Pessoa


An art exhibition that you can live reading a pdf document. Because art, like life, is above all a state of mind. It is said that the Jewish people when he had to run away from their land in an emergency condition, was forced to move from the logic of the monument to that one of document.

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The text has been translated from Italian into English with Google Translate. In so doing, the text deliberately maintains a level of approximation and imperfection that allows a more engaged, interactive, and open reading of the artwork and intentions.

“Rather than suffering or resist it by inertia, global capitalism seems to have made its streams, the speed, the nomadism? Then we have to be even more mobile. Not help coerce, compel, and force to greet the stagnation as an ideal. The world imagery is dominated by flexibility? We invent new meanings for it, inoculate the long term and the very slow speed to the heart rather than oppose them rigid postures and nostalgic. The strength of this emerging thinking style resides in compliant protocols on the way: it is to elaborate a nomadic thought that organizes itself in terms of circuits and experiments, and no permanent installation, Prospectives built. The precariousness of the experience oppose a thought resolutely precarious that it fits and inoculation in the same networks that suffocate us. “
Nicolas Bourriaud

Kari Altmann Interview to Luca Rossi on the project “Being There”

Kari Altmann: When I read the subtitle of this project I immediately thought of Yves Klein’s phrase: “Life itself is the absolute art.” Share this coincidence?

Luca Rossi: In the modernist avant-garde was something good, while at times -with the postmodern inoltrato- risk of “throwing the baby out with the bathwater”. The art market requires objects, but more and more, also because of global competition, it will not make sense to produce items for sale. We will pass precisely from the monument, it understood as the object, the document intended as a set of information. More directly and cynically also Freeze Masters project shows us this.

KA: For the first time since the beginning of your activities in 2009, ask to pay a euro to be able to have the “document.” Usually all your projects have been free. Why this choice?

LR: In this project I wanted to radicalize my practice. The symbolic payment of one euro is a way to make clear how to live and enjoy the exhibition it is necessary to see this document.

KA: The project touches on some places, such as an abbey, a gallery, a museum, a biennial, etc. but you can always consider where the viewer is located. You have spoken of a “nomadic fast” that is to be the work, viewer and author in the same place. How does this reflection with respect to the dramatic migration flows at this period of history?

LR: What you have described is the “selfie”, that operates a coincidence, author and first spectator. It seems interesting to always install my “work” in this place I consider to be the only “political space” remained. In this space, in my micro, local and private dimension, we can do a great deal for migrants. The modern state built tents but can not solve the problem in the long term. The art could do it.

KA: In your biography I read: “anyone can be Luca Rossi, this can spur us all into a new sense of responsibility and opportunity.” But if the opportunity I see is take a truck and kill hundreds of people, what do we do?

LR: My goal is not to eliminate the evil of the world, or creating yet another operetta-content. My goal is to stimulate critical sense towards reality, ie critical thinking to make the differences from the overproduction of content and possibilities to which we are subjected. For 10 years we have all become “everyday photographers” armed of our smartphone, but what about the differences between the photos we take? And among our pictures and those of the great artist Luigi Ghirri?

KA: The film “Beyond the garden” tells of our “village idiot”, an “idiot gardener”, who somehow manages to bypass and overcome the American political system. Mr. Rossi can take us as “beyond the garden” and let us know good from evil?

LR: The objective of Mr Rossi, as the “village idiot”, or like the “idiot gardener”, is to create a decompression space, a new window of opportunity. To do so it must be “idiots”, as the most intelligent positions are immediately antibodies that cancel out. Think of the hundreds of “smart” artists have to homologate to be selected. In this space you can experiment and train the ability to see, this is the “Over” garden project.

KA: Do you think the “ability to see” is the same with human happiness?

LR: No, but often those who do not see or do not want to see you feel happier. But that’s okay in the short term, in the long term, or to experience, for training or for information, you have to learn to see. Otherwise you’re sick and do not understand why. Like a man who thinks he sees but that really is blind, continues to do damage, hitting my head. He lives a malaise, but does not “see” and does not understand why. While one who knows he is blind careful crossing the street.

KA: I like this your reflection, it comes to mind as there is no right or wrong art art, old art and innovative art. The true value is awareness, in your example the blind man who knows he is blind.

LR: In every work of art, as in everything, there is a value that depends on the awareness and consistency of work, context and intentions of the author (materials, other works, biography etc.). Ie a framework of Ikea from 59 Euros that scopiazza Andy Warhol may have much more value than a lot of pretentious works that many dealers offer at the fair for 5000 or 6000 Euro.