25 Mar 2014

Why do I conceal myself

I love simplicity, spareness, privacy and to be an incognito person, I love potentiality but not power, I have never been in search for fame, I only wish fame for my artworks, this is to say my message. I do not like to be defined, I do not like to be considered good or evil; being this or that means to conform to a model, this is to say to become slaves, instead I want to be totally free from any stereotype or expectation.

Many people decide to become an artist because they always dreamt to be recognised on the streets by people whispering “Did you see? Mr. So-and-so”; this is valid either to a planetary level or limitedly to the place where one lives.
I am not interested in being recognised in public, I detest the idea to appear on the media. In the past it happened that I was identified by a stranger who saw me on a specialised magazine; at first that pleasantly surprised me, but after pondering I felt uncomfortable. Since then I still have made some more public presence, but it is quite a long time now that I scrupulously avoid to be photographed in public events and I dispose the removal of any picture where I can be identified.
This habit has become very useful in the actual dystopian society of mass surveillance and media tagging.

wasted words #30 (after Andy Warhol's saying), 2012
Series of personal aphorisms, ink on toilet paper, ~ 95 x 3200 mm

So why do I have recently started to exhibit myself in person into performances? Because this is a rapid and instant way to create communicative and conceptual actions without the hassle of creating an audio-visual artwork or paying some actors. And after all nobody knows for sure if the person acting the performance is really me or an actor properly instructed.

       nothing happened archetype, 2012                             rewilding a plum tree, 2014           

I am not interested in appearance, neither in aesthetics, thus the most natural, neutral and fast way to conceal one's own identity is to pull the hair over the face. Kids! Try this at home, or around town under the surveillance cameras.
I detest make-up, while masking or cloaking is too demanding, and, as I said, to me only the message is important; I would consider masking only when functional to the message; for example, the burqa or other anonymising costumes nowadays are a message in itself, even much overworked in the art scene.

A photograph of the Artist Benna seen from the back. April 2009
Ink on unexposed photographic paper, 12.5 x 9 cm

As I am not interested in showing off, I not even like the compulsory ranking of social ego and any definition of status, then I refuse to recognise myself in territorial, national or chronological-historical identities; in few words I do not like to define myself as belonging to a state or as citizen of a nation, or to say where I was born and other personal data imposed by the materialist society: I am a sovereign, universal and self-determined intellect, as anyone who decide to be so. I like to confront spiritually, and the spirit knows no space or time limits, the mental affinities do exist regardless of physical limits. This attitude of mine is anyway an obstacle in my art activities, since also in the art world there are few people who have such spiritual stature to take the word in freedom for a being free from formal ties. Sadly, bureaucracy has turn people into sterile, cold, suspicious, fearful persons, forcing the soul inside the most crushing crevices of a petrified armour-body.
Finally, people is too much interested in materialism, in what is passing through their digestive system, in what is covering their skin, in what is supporting their weight: those people will leave behind in the cosmos just a random trail of rubbish, while the others are leaving behind paths of intelligent signs.

the barter, 2008-2016
Polyptych, 4 photographic manipulations, 75 x 50 cm each

We have been taught that we are one with the cosmos, and I believe it too. Anyway nature defined our essence for this earthly dimension so we are individuals, and everything is inside us as it is outside. The individual entity is the essence of our duty, not the egotism or the imposition of the self, let alone the branding of one's own social identity. For ourselves the individuality is the foundation of freedom, of self-determination and completeness. In the individual there is everything we could ever have, or could ever find: the knowledge, the energy, the spirit; our individual essence makes all the cosmos surrounding us rational and plausible; we are the origin and the end of our existence.

The Fourth Paradise (after Michelangelo Pistoletto's The Third Paradise), 2013
Digital graphics, print on paper, 25 x 20 cm

Secrecy is peculiar to individuality, which is almost near to oneness, the strongest structure in the universe.

wasted words #43, 2013
Series of personal aphorisms, ink on toilet paper, ~ 95 x 1510 mm

Having said all this, here is a self-portrait representing myself, as one of the forms actually predominating in my spirit.

self-portrait, 2014, print on paper, 30 x 23 cm