I read almost everything Cesare Pavese wrote, last his diary. Profound, lucid words alternating with words drenched in suffering, alienation, despair. I rebelled.
I wanted to heal him and all those great artists who committed suicide.
In a big country house from the end of the XIX century, inhabited by several generations,
I collected gestures and left-overs: cloths, rags, pillowcases and fabrics. Folded, stained, worn out and perfectly ironed pieces, forgotten for about a century. Perfectly forgotten.
I collected phrases from Pavese’s diary and laid them next to my treasures. He spoke about a maid and I imagined her, busy folding exactly those bed sheets and towels, mending socks with thread and needle, while whistling a song. This installation – born in a hurry, developed through the years and just ended – came out of the desire to take care of this man, maybe with the same kind of care used for the domestic world a while ago.
Guarire Cesare Pavese, Installation view, BienNoLo, 2021, Milan
Guarire Cesare Pavese [Healing Cesare Pavese] is an installation made of 15 independent pieces.
Their titles, starting top left, are:
Ingoiare il cielo a pezzi [Gulping down the sky bit by bit]
L’anima e l’animale, 2 pezzi [The soul and the animal], 2 pieces
Arrostito dalla solitudine [Roasted by solitude]
L’ultimo giorno del cielo [The last day of the sky]
La torre dell’oblio [The tower of oblivion]
Ave Cesare gratia pleno [Ave Cesare gratia pleno]
Senza più lacrime [No more tears]
Cuore da passeggio [Walking heart]
Quando anche il sole si incaponisce [When even the sun gets stubborn]
La contessina molto adirata [The very angry little countess]
Con e senza i tuoi occhi [With and without your eyes]
La diaspora della bellezza [The diaspora of beauty]
L’origine di tutte le cose [The origin of all things]
Ave Cesare gratia pleno [Ave Cesare gratia pleno], 2021, detail
Precipizio [Precipice], 2021, detail
La diaspora della bellezza [The diaspora of beauty], 2021, detail
Senza più lacrime [No more tears], 2021, detail