Tools for a science fiction of the present Back

Tools for a science fiction of the present

Studio Rizoma is a new European cultural institute set up in 2020 in Palermo following the Biennale Arcipelago Mediterraneo of November 2019. Rizoma is based in Palermo with a reason: “There is another Europe and it overlooks the Mediterranean, and Palermo gathers its geographical and cultural heritage.”

Studio Rizoma’s first public action is Pandemos, a one-day exhibition-performance which will take place online on October 27. The exhibition has been conceived as an artistic initiative entirely usable online, and all the works have been produced imagining a situation of lockdown and closure of public spaces.

The presentation takes the shape of a multimedia and multidimensional book. This book is a collective exhibition of works by 13 Italian and international artists working in Sicily. They were selected during the lockdown, and worked during the summer to develop a series of works related to the experience of the pandemic and point forward to overcoming it. “The writers and creatives have been invited to answer, in a language of their own choice, a few starting questions, following a methodology closer to that of a collective book than that of a group exhibition.” The various contributions – short films, storytelling, performance, musical composition – “transform the act of attention into resistance, imagination and potential,” writes curator Izabela Anna Moren in the introduction to the exhibition.

Earlier this year we had a short conversation with her.

“Pandemos of course refers to the pandemic, and to that second meaning: all of us. We think that the pandemic told all of us something about our old life. In the absence of the normality we found new seeds, new levels of consciousness. On matters private and public. Economically. And politically. To overcome this pandemic, and its’ causes, we need global action. And arts is a fantastic vehicle to make that change.”

Even though Pandemos is set up quickly Izabela and the other members of the selection committee judged projects on their futurability. “For we want remain here, keeping collecting energies, but we also plan co-operations with biennales in Tunis, in Warsaw, in other places not considered to be the centre. With our online lives more and more becoming part of our off line lives, Rizoma beliefs it is now necessary to conceive and create artistic proposals that live directly in digital space that increasingly represents an element of learning and leisure – from school to culture.

Eliza Collin_Plant Data, 2020

The selection of a private space for the launch, underlines the importance the private dimension is acquiring during the pandemic, as well as its transformation into a workspace and a space to socialize.

“For, all the zooming makes us more aware of what actual encounters are. They are about dialoguing with people you might not know, not about a series of monologues. It tells us we need think hard on whom we invite to our spaces, for they need to include people that are different than you. We are more forced than ever to think about whom to invite.”

You are invited to the online event here.

Grant awarded: 14.500 euros.