Cristina Pancini è a Lipsia, ospite per un mese di Natasha, ricercatrice russa, momentaneamente assente.
Non la conosce, non sa niente della sua vita. Cristina vive nella camera di Natasha: una camera piena
di immagini di fiori. Osserva gli oggetti presenti nella stanza, e per renderli familiari, attribuisce loro storie e significati. Decide così di lasciare a Natasha, come ringraziamento per l'ospitalità, i “suoi” fiori: carota selvatica, fiordaliso, finocchio selvatico, malva, camomilla, orchidea selvatica, botton d’oro, zafferano selvatico. “Incorniciati, sono sopra al suo letto, in alto, accanto alla finestra. Insieme, una lettera e la libertà di fare ciò che vuole con il mio regalo”, racconta Cristina. Nascono così nuovi fiori, prodotto di intrecci tra identità viandanti, che attraversano luoghi e spazi, come quello della casa, specchio di questa nuova vitalità contemporanea, fatta di flussi di persone, habitus e culture.
Leipzig, March 1, 2014
(NOTHING BUT) FLOWERS
I, on the contrary, just left to go back to Italy.
In Leipzig I spent a very intense month, I feel very tired but very happy.
As you know, I have lived in your room, shared your spaces: your bed, your big cozy square pillow, the view from the two enormous windows, where I admired a beautiful loaded blue sky this month, all your books in Russian, unfortunately incomprehensible for me, the small black and white photo of your cute husband, the large desk that gave me the chance to work insatiably, with that lamp that so usefully helped me to draw, your two plants, ah! The branches of the bigger plant have yellowed, I hope it doesn’t depend on the amount of water that I gave to her! All these sofas and chairs, with their blankets, their colored pillows and hairs, many, those of Robin Hood, Oscar Waldy… the big red cat that at night, just when my dreams became gentle and enjoyable, was able, with the power of his paws, to open the door and climb on the bed in silence, to stare at me with innocence and start a complex speech in a language, perhaps simpler than German, but equally incomprehensible to me. Yes, I love him too.
A place is built on the stratification of the stories of the people who have lived in it. I believe in direct contacts between men from different origins and in what unexpectedly they give birth to. I have never met you, but I have shared your room. Because I am curious by nature, I have often stopped and looked at your talkative objects and I told myself a lot of stories about them, so that they could become familiar to me as well.
This, has also happened with the ‘flowers’.
There are so many flowers in your room, lots of images that represent them: there is a small postcard with a robin and cherry blossoms of Hokusai; a watercolor painting with two blue bellflowers climbing on a net
(I wonder who did it, you? Is it a gift? By whom?); a photocopy attached on the door representing a variety of flowers accompanied by a Cyrillic inscription of which I understand only “2010”; and a postcard with a lot of mallow in front of a metallic wall full of tags.
Now, if you look above your bed, next to the window, there is a drawing by me, It is a flower too.
Besides to the positive effect that the flowers have had on me, another factor that fascinated me was their provenance. It often happens that in the homes of people who travel and study abroad, cultural influences can be found anywhere and usually are so disparate. You, come from Russia, I come from Italy and both of us, for different reasons, we spent time in Leipzig, both, for different reasons, we lived in more than one place. By leaving here a flower of mine, I am also leaving a story of mine; so, this room, in some way, becomes also my home.
This decision and gift of mine, unknown to you until a while ago, is part of a larger project that I am working on. As I did with you, I am gently interacting with people and their intimate spaces. I will try to deepen -by applying drawing, installation, performance and forms of collaboration-, what unexpectedly I meet in their homes.
My goal is to tap heterogeneous contexts in the world, in order to understand how, in an era of social mutations such as ours, also a central concept like that of the home is changing.
One of the first differences I noticed between Leipzig and the cities where I lived and live in Italy is the availability of living spaces. Here everything is huge, the buildings, Russian inheritance, opulent, the rooms, so bright and enormous, even the doors are bigger than ours! And you can really feel it: to have a space relaxes you, it dignifies you, and this is a right.
And now, I have arrived at the end of my trip, and I have to leave all this abundance of space. As I told you,
I am tired but satisfied, because I worked hard and well here. I have to admit that to let one of my drawings here, is a little bit hard. You are free to do what you want with it. The idea that it could remain there, looking out of that window to catch the sun, makes me proud. Thanks
Hospitality is linguistically and semantically an ambiguous term. Just to look at the latin roots of the word- hospes standing for bot host and guest, and hostis, signifying both foreigner and stranger, but also enemy (as in hostility) - reveals the multiple, sometimes contradictory meanings at its heart. (Lorenzo Fusi, The Unexpected Guest, Art Books Publishing Ltd, 2012)
Marzo, Aprile e Maggio 2014
(Nothing But) Flowers raccoglie le testimonianze di questo progetto. Rende quindi partecipe lo spettatore delle tracce di un’esperienza di vita che ha visto protagoniste Cristina e Natasha. Al centro della scena la loro relazione, non sempre “facile”, a dimostrazione che il lavoro è ed è stato sempre in divenire, condizionato dalle reazioni e dalle tempistiche umane.
Malaga home gallery
Natasha ha mostrato qualche reticenza a partecipare attivamente al progetto. Un'assenza che l'artista decide di colmare coinvolgendo il pubblico, invitato così a vestire, metaforicamente e realmente, il ruolo di Natasha: oggetti, abiti, immagini, cibi, parole che rimandino alla Russia, sua terra d'origine. Qualsiasi cosa che possa sostituirla, in cambio di una traccia di questa esperienza: (Nothing But) Flowers. Giuditta Deodato
Per (Nothing But) Flowers:
Francesca Turrini, da Le notti bianche,
Per (Nothing But) Flowers:
Autore: Pergola Giloux