DUSTIN CAUCHI, ALESSANDRO DI PIETRO, ENRICO BOCCIOLETTI (Episode 03)
“Shepard / Desmond & Locke” curated by The Swan Station / Temporary location: Eduardo Secci Contemporary.
Photo credit: Federico Di Iorio
“SHEPHARD / DESMOND & LOCKE” project is directly linked to the TV series LOST (2005-2010), in which a plane carrying a group of strangers crashes on a mysterious island due to an unexplainable karmic relationship. An island with no precise geographic coordinates, invisible to both radars and GPS, with a wheel-shaped engine (Chakravartin) that allows it to warp from place to place and from time to time, just as an electron on the orbits of a giant atom. The entire series focuses on the death of the survivors, referred to as macroscopic, linear and predictable beings, made of flesh and blood, and on their rebirth, on their conscious awakening to the spiritual paradoxes of quantum mechanics, of quarks, of subatomic particles and, more in general, of the invisible reality that links and produces all possible phenomena.
The characters in LOST are half ghosts and half pan-dimensional fluctuating beings; they are in a transient limbo, in an epic transition split into 9 separate acts, where each act corresponds to one of the 9 stations of the DHARMA project. The first station is the one of the swan, “The Swan Station,” which Alessandro, Enrico and Dustin will occupy with their works, and which, for the occasion, will be delocalized in Florence via a process of grammatical transposition, temporarily exiting the cinematographic dimension and becoming a collaborative platform in the parallel universe of contemporary art. In LOST, the Swan station is the place where reason – personified by doctor SHEPARD – and faith – represented by LOCKE, the paraplegic – meet DESMOND, the universal constant that connects all levels of existence.
As for the protagonists, your mission is to save the world.
Will you choose to continue to punch in the sixteen digits in the computer of the station every 108 minutes, and press “execute” to allow the system to reboot and maintain the status quo? Or will you challenge such a mechanism and trigger a switch in paradigm, opening to new scenarios of endless and wild recursive entropy?
Through the free interconnection of the showcased works, the SHEPHARD / DESMOND & LOCKE” project provides the subliminal answer to this question. Two long and narrow lightboxes, of the ORION BLOW series by Alessandro Di Pietro, materialize a digital timeline made of steel, mirrored surfaces, and luminous designs. What is usually confined in the graphic interface of video editing software is converted into a physical object, proposing new narrative fields. Time stops to be something unique and impalpable and duplicates, fragments, and multiplies. Two moments of the same story are observed at a distance: in the first, a character is frozen in the act of keeping the air in his cheeks with filled lungs, while in the second his eyes are lit with flames of flickering red light. Tension emerges from being unable to understand whether they are holding their breath in, if the fired-up eyes are due to the physical effort, or if one is blowing on the eyes of the other, fueling or extinguishing the spark of their relationship.
A sinister presence, apparently defenseless, occupies the central volume of the space. LOOMER, by Enrico Boccioletti, is a sculptural installation composed of a microphone stick, an ultraviolet light bulb, an acoustic filter, a bomber with its pockets filled with stones, and several acoustic transducers that sense and amplify the electromagnetic waves of cellphones. A kind of automation/scarecrow that releases alien sounds as it gets close to the phones of spectators, establishing somewhat of a divine bridge between the viewers and the energy fields surrounding physical objects. An incomprehensible physical dialogue, which reveals, as Enrico says, “hyperspectral realities that spread, translucent, between the frameworks of the real present, hypothetic futures, and pasts, which appear as different and shimmering.”
By Dustin Cauchi, “PEOPLE LIKE US NEVER WIN” and “SUCH A PITY SHE’S IN THE CITY,” a diptych printed on canvas obtained through the systemic digital and chemical alteration of HDR iPhone 7 Plus photos and still images from video in 4K and Polaroid. In the first image, on the screen of a MacBook Pro, set onto a throne made of shiny black plastic, we see the word “Suicide” in fuchsia, while in the second one, a girl in the mirror looks straight at us through her pupil-less eyes. Both compositions are roughly graven on a blood-red background and envelop all the grammatical digits of Dustin’s vocabulary, characterized by a crudeness of the domestic interiors and by the very strong emotional contribution that they instill with the viewer, who will go beyond the confines that separate the exterior world from the interior.
The result is a highly symbolic and stratified narrative space that welcomes the viewers, who are faced with the opportunity to travel in their deepest and most ancestral fears.