Paolo Cavinato - Stefano Trevisi
1 may 2010 - 12 june 2010
Galerie Mario Mazzoli, GmbH
“A man sets himself the task of designing the world. As the years pass, he fills a space with images of provinces, of kingdoms, of mountains, of bays, of ships, of islands, of fish, of residences, of instruments, of stars, of horses and of people. Shortly before dying, he discovers that this peaceful labyrinth of lines traces the image of his face”.
Jorge Luis Borges
Originating in Berlin and traversing Berlin, the exhibition project Linie is articulated as a site-specific installation, which offers the public a practical route between diverse multi-media installations, the product of the collaboration between Paolo Cavinato and Stefano Trevisi, visual artist and composer, respectively, who team up in the “duo” project Spazio Visivo (Visual Space). A formula that has been tested successfully in previous exhibitions, their collaboration aims to create a dialogue between the space, as the nucleus-origin and place-destination of representation and action (visual, theatrical, perceptual, motorial, relational, emotional, psychological, sensorial) and the musical research, dedicated to analyzing and experimenting with sound, based on and resulting from a system of energy in perennial conflict, between affirmation and negation, expansion and contraction, distortion and equilibrium, disturbance and calm. Thus, “LINIE (‘LINES’) creates different directions, shapes, boundaries, crossings, insurmountable or traversable. The project plays with the ambivalence between the single and the multiple, between a microcosm made of tactile particles that are more immediate, palpable and concrete and a macrocosm that is remote, abstract and distant.” These are the lines of sense of the exhibition itinerary that the two artists, imbued with a rare conscientiousness with regard to their own work and the methods utilized, have expressly conceived and installed for the spaces of Gallery Mario Mazzoli, a gallery that was established with the goal of following and promoting research and relationships between the visual arts and contemporary music. Starting from ROOM 0, the place of the beginning, of the introduction, the idea emerges of a spatial relationship between an internal and an external, between the object and the space, the object and the sound image of itself: a series of photographs portrays rooms scattered with objects, dispersed like notes of a fragmented story, rooms dense with the waste of memory, rooms that are frail, yet heavy with energy. Here, the sound anticipates and suggests the sound materials of the following installations, now in detail, again from an extreme distance. ROOM 1, called the TEATRINI (LITTLE THEATERS), is a container of containers, of box-objects that contain visions of architecture, of spaces and locations rediscovered in the urban context of the city: cells of dirt in which to lie on petrified beds, accompanied by the resonating sounds of dripping and crackling; sonic extensions of circles of water diffusing in a solitary room carved in the branches of a thicket. Also where they seem to suggest open places, the theaters transmit the idea of a closed space, a shell-belly-cave to protect its own intimate feeling, its own interiority, returning to itself in a labyrinth of Kafkaesque memory where identity is constructed through a continuing tension between alteration and recognition. This is also true of the sound materials, characterized by very contrasting morphologies, whose origins we can nevertheless still infer, composed of sounds with concrete roots and instrumental origin, sounds of the environs of Berlin, sounds taken from “historical” materials. Emanating from autonomous sources hidden in the interior of each little theater, they create a single multi-channel installation. The theaters form one central space at the interior, where the visitor is surrounded by them and can perceive them in their totality, and an external space, along which he can walk, pause, continue and return: a labyrinthine design for contemplation and for action. For us, an opportunity to waver and lose ourselves between mental associations, individual memories, remembered sensations, alluring desires. In ROOM 3, the rectangular surface presents a complex audio and visual dialogue in the two vertical walls: from one side, the wall to the right, about a hundred container-objects of various dimensions, built from simple materials (paper, earth, wood, newspaper, dust, crumbs and fragments of other things), form a complex three-dimensional pattern which emit particular sonic elements, extrapolated through a process of fragmentation and multiplication of the materials from the previous room. Each element is ICONA (ICON) – which is also the name of the room – to be more precise, pure abstraction and a plastic sensibility for objects and spaces, as Malevich showed in the research he pursued between image and architecture, visual abstraction and urban hypothesis. On the opposite wall, to the left, a single element stands out, an isolated sound mirror “painting” where the visitor can re-discover himself and re-(or un-)acquaint himself: on the surface of the mirror, a hole introduces his face into an infinite internal corridor, which takes in the same room made of boxes, in a play of reflections and repetitions. The reciprocal sensory relationships established between the two walls and between these and the visitor (who, in turn, as Cavinato suggests, becomes the largest container, an acting container among the potential containers exhibited) are further intensified by the complex musical work. Here, Trevisi transforms some of the boxes dispersed among the hundred others into sound paintings: “(…) inside the walls, I tried to create a ‘frontal spatialization’ (…) singling out four lines that dissect the acoustic space from left to right (…) the center of the installation is left in silence (…) each painting is characterized by an actual value within a gradient of abstraction”. On the opposite wall, Trevisi places two additional mini-speakers which diffuse sound material that is much more recognizable and detailed, perceptible only at a very close proximity – namely, at the moment in which one looks through the hole of the mirror – thus suggesting, at the sonic level, the single/manifold archetype already presented by the installation of Cavinato. Images such as ghosts, or rather, apparitions of things and objects, remembered and reconstructed in paper on a scale of 1:1, return in ROOM 2, called PHANTASMA (PHANTASM), whose black and shiny pavement reflects them back, rendering them “…minimal, white, frozen, immobile, static, as if they were extrapolated from the mind”, explains Cavinato. Arranged along a white line, these objects mirror themselves, duplicating themselves, creating an abstract composition where they reveal themselves in their incompleteness, or better, in the possibility of becoming something other than themselves: from the chair that loses its function while maintaining the form, to the irregular polyhedron, alchemical stone, reminiscent of the melancholic abstractions of Dürer. Absolute forms that are reproduced ad infinitum, while the visitor, having entered the room and not finding his reflection, symbolically disowns and annihilates himself in search of an identity that unsettles him and hides him between the objects. If I trace a line, as Cavinato and Trevisi appear to suggest, it is because I intend to separate, set a boundary between two or more parts. And at the same time, dividing them, I admit that these were, and can return to being united. This is what happens in PHANTASMA, where the line traces the boundary and at the same time dissolves it, rendering it pointless and flexible, as the sound installation also suggests: “(…) the sound as a visual ambient is aseptic and crystallized, slowly variable, with a very low degree of energy that breaks away from the chaos of the preceding room (…) into a misty sound, slowly iridescent”, explains Trevisi. The EVOLUTION of ROOM 4, instead of recomposing the itinerary, fragments it further in the space, forcing the visitor to more perceptual and cognitive, visual and sensorial dis-articulation. The movements of the sound, diffused by loudspeakers hidden in some of the prisms that invade the space and suspended in a double twisted helix, pervade the environment like sonic dust. Pulverization of the work, pulverization of the sound. The last line of an itinerary inside and outside of one’s own identity – one’s own world.
In the search for a new beginning, for another self, for other visual and sonic spaces:
I reach my center
my algebra and my key
Soon I shall know who I am.
Jorge Luis Borges, from “In Praise of Darkness”, 1969