31/10/2012 - 13/01/2013


PAV, Turin’s living art park, rounds off its 2012 art program, dedicated to the Ethos of the living, with The Sun Behind The Clouds, a dual personal show by Ettore Favini and He-He, curated by Claudio Cravero.

Inspired by the film of the same name (2009) directed by Tenzing Sonam, in which the Tibetan people fight for their independence from the People’s Republic of China, led by the Dalai Lama, the title of the exhibition refers to two precise natural phenomena (the sun and clouds) in the sense of bodies in conflict. While the presence of clouds obscures the daylight, and vice versa the sun shining in a cloudless sky is synonymous with there being no weather systems, the two elements alternate in a play of forces and tensions for their reciprocal negation. Analysed by Ettore Favini (Cremona, 1974) and the Anglo-German duo He-He (Helen Evans, Welwyn Garden City, UK, 1972; and Heiko Hansen, Pinneburg, D, 1970), the sun and clouds thus comprise the means through which the artists give life to smoky vortices, mechanical accelerations and emergent mapping, both in graphic form and as installations.

Embracing and merging aspects of astronomy and physics, Favini’s works are the result of a project prepared over one year, including at PAV, through the installation Quarantotto soli (Forty-eight suns) in which forty-eight photographic recordings are superimposed to form an analemma, a figure similar to the symbol representing infinity (∞). Suspended from the roof, meanwhile, is Ipotesi di finito_#3 (Hypotesis of the Finite), a section of a tree-trunk on whose surface a series of magnifying lenses mark out the passage of time, as the sun’s rays, day after day by, burn into it: the same sunlight that enables living beings to survive. Likewise in the greenhouse is the exhibit Solo un minuto, quando nessuno poteva vedere (Only a minute, when no-one could see), a permanent work especially designed for PAV with the collaboration of architect Carlo Micono: from the concept of a sundial arose the idea of placing a wooden template covering the window and embedding a golden coin in the floor, so that the movement of light through the exhibition spaces could be observed.

During the inaugural evening, the silhouette of Favini, traced upon the ground and filled with oranges, paid homage to the work by Alighiero Boetti Io che prendo il sole a Torino il 19 gennaio 1969. During the event the public collected the oranges, seasonal fruit ripened thanks to the sun, and transformed them into juice to drink, in a sort of ritual of celebration.

Whereas Favini’s works suggest a worldview tinged with anti-humanism, in which nature represents an endless source of discoveries that bring us face to face with the abyss of the infinitely large, He-He’s research contemplates human activity as an evolving and integral part of nature understood as a whole. The works by the Anglo-German duo propose a critical rethinking of technological systems, including those on a small scale, which surround us and to which, often unaware, we turn on a daily basis. Involving the public with scenic and playful strategies, the artists put in place systems to help us understand the emissions that man causes. In the main area of PAV, visitors are greeted by the installations Flyrony and Prise en charge, both from the series Catastrophes Domestiques (2010-2012). A flatiron is suspended in mid-air in the greenhouse. Intermittently, steam issues forth from it, creating misty sinuous filaments: a blanket of clouds that, together with the smoky emissions from the device Prise en charge, a disguised electric wall-socket, inundate the PAV greenhouse, obscuring the sun evoked by the works of Ettore Favini, almost as though to stress the title of the exhibition The Sun Behind The Clouds.

In this dual personal show, art accurately reflects some conflicting positions of today’s environmental ethics. But nature is always explored both physically and intellectually, because it is necessary to activate the reason and the senses together, if we are to become aware of actions or behaviour that, like the well-known “butterfly effect”, in the long term can cause irreparable changes.

To understand natural phenomena, and to learn to recognise the symptoms of the fracture that increasingly separates man from the environment, are the first steps in an attempt at rearrangement aimed at achieving equilibrium. GESTO D’EQUILIBRIO is the title of the workshop for schools (of all levels) conceived by PAV Educational and Training Activities, coordinated by Orietta Brombin. After looking for correlations between day-to-day atmospheric data and levels of alteration due to pollution, the relative weights and proportions may be visualised by making mobiles, with the goal of finding a possible equilibrium in the continually changing conditions. GESTO D’EQUILIBRIO is also a workshop open to the general public: Sunday January 13th 2013, from 3 pm to 5 pm.

Information and bookings: lab@parcoartevivente.it




Ettore Favini / He-He
October 31st 2012 – January 13th 2013
Friday, 3 pm – 6 pm; Saturday and Sunday, 12 am – 7 pm
Tickets: full price 3 €, reduced 2 €, free for children under 10, adults over 65, disabilities with an attender, holders of Abbonamento Torino Musei / Torino+Piemonte Card

School groups can reserve a visit to PAV from Tuesday to Friday, 10 am – 5 pm.

Parco d’Arte Vivente – Turin – Italie

Image :
He-He, Air de Londres, 2007

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