Archive for February, 2019

Time Past Time Present Time Future

February 8th, 2019

Three Stanza paintings on show in Italy as past of PHANTOMOLOGY at Das Cubo. All Oil on Canvas size 90cm by  120 cm.

Stanza data paintings

Stanza Artwork

FANTOMOLOGIA. Dal micro al macro

February 8th, 2019

The project “PHANTOMOLOGY. From micro to macro to reality phenomena” curated by Marco Mancuso, Daniela Tozzi and Ilaria Bignotti, presented by CUBO – follows two different lines of action.

On the one hand, it suggests a possible evolution of CUBO artistic proposal by carrying on its research of the last years and inducing a deeper analysis on the relationship among technology, scientific investigation and identity between human beings and their surrounding environment. On the other hand, it deconstructs the classical display modes of contemporary art and narration of New Media Art by fluidly moving among installation elements, performative feedbacks and theoretical and dialogical apparatuses. CUBO and Unipol spaces (the Art Space, the auditorium, the multimedia library) are thus transformed by the “PHANTOMOLOGY” project into a constantly changing narrative paradigm. They become a delocalized place where the public is asked to reflect on the power of technological changes and on the impact they have from the artistic as well as from the social, cultural and political points of view, thus investigating both the expressive power of nature and its intrinsic capacity of modelling and of aesthetic and formal composition.

THE TECHNOLOGICAL ENVIRONMENT

The era we are experiencing, characterized by a constant and increasingly rapid technological and scientific development, involves on the one hand strong enthusiasm and curiosity towards a future that appears generous in the utopian conception of what we consider progress and well being, and on the other hand a gradual awareness and redefinition of the centrality of our role in relation to the other, to the different, to what exists out of us. In fact, contemporary human beings are dominated by a constant flow of data and information indiscriminately produced by machines, services, artefacts and other living things; a series of ephemeral and invisible “objects” that we partly produce and partly collect, allowing us to build and shape forms of relationships with the world around us.

The Nemesis Machine – From Metropolis to Megalopolis to Ecumenopolis on display at CUBO Art Space is one of the most iconic works by the British artist STANZA, since the Mid-eighties a pioneer and experimenter of the complex relationship among man, technology and space declined in its different personal, relational and architectural forms. The artwork is a complex and surprising scale representation of a virtual city, whose formal elements are composed of circuits and electronic components, while the lighting is made of LEDs and indicators that monitor in real time information flows, connections and public data networks of the real city around them. A miniaturized synecdoche reproducing the dynamics that characterize, for better or for worse, our daily lives. A transparent membrane that connects CUBO with the city of Bologna, which lives and breathes beyond the large window facing the installation and from which The Nemesis Machine attracts the attention of the visitors, who in turn become part of the artwork as soon as their movements in the exhibition space are monitored and reproduced by a sensor system on a series of small screens. A reminder of Michel Foucault’s statement: “Se forme alors une politique des coercitions qui sont un travail sur le corps, une manipulation calculée de ses éléments, de ses gestes, de ses comportements” [it now takes shape a policy of coercion that is a work on the body, a calculated manipulation of its elements, its gestures, its behaviours]”1 as well as of the evident privacy implications related to those same surveillance technologies and “intelligent automation” to which we have delegated our anxieties of space “protection” against what is “different” and “unknown”. In fact, as Étienne de La Boétie recalls, “Ce maître n’a pourtant que deux yeux, deux mains, un corps, et rien de plus que n’a le dernier des habitants du nombre infini de nos villes. Ce qu’il a de plus, ce sont les moyens que vous lui fournissez pour vous détruire. D’où tire-t-il tous ces yeux qui vous épient, si ce n’est de vous?  [This master who so dominates you has only two eyes, two hands, a body, he has nothing more than the less important man of the immense and infinite number of our cities, if not the superiority that you attribute to destroy them. Where have you taken so many eyes, with whom I spy on you, if you do not offer them to you?]”2

The Nemesis Machine by Stanza

 

 

STANZA’s artistic research focuses on the critical and social analysis of the vital participative systems that characterize contemporary cities, formalizing his work in a series of artworks that, by exploring adjoining disciplinary areas such as Net Art and Interactive Art, aim to trigger dialogues and conversations on urban, technological and social space policies. In his actions and installations, STANZA offers the public the classic archetype of the metropolis as a technological and biological organism, based in both cases on a system of constant and frenetic relationships that make up its lifeblood, thus avoiding the risk of an excessive trivialization or of a distorted reading of his work thanks to the rigorous visual vocabulary and the surprising ability to trigger a dialogue between artwork and public made of curiosity, exploration, reflection, fun and participation.

Text By by Marco Mancuso

The Nemesis Machine by Stanza

Stanza Artwork