Saturday, 24 July 2010

Coffee and TV: the next Bay Window Project

Tuesday 20 July.

Italian artist Luana Perilli (pictured) is in London for the first time for her solo show in The Bay Window Project. She's been traveling a lot lately between Rome, Milan and Naples, where she is having a residency at the PAN Museum.

We talk a lot about Naples' ill famed Spanish Areas, where she is actually living: after 9 pm there is a sort of curfew and you see no one around. After a shameless questioning (who are you, what you are doing here, how long are you staying for, who do you know), the owner of the bar where she goes everyday for a coffee decided that she is "not bothering anyone. Yet."

She likes London. The first impression is what it counts: I warn her that you may love it or hate it, it seems to be a very immediate reaction for every European. Black or white, no halfway house.

Before throwing ourselves into the setting up of the next Bay Window Project, I take her around the area to do some very essential tasks: grocery shopping. Very intellectual, but my opinion is: to learn something about a new country, you must start from the food. Then, after having made sure that we weren't going to starve in the following days, we go gallery spotting, straight into London's evening life.

Our Habda is opening a show at Medcalf: Alex Heaton, with Abyssal Worpeltinger

After a two-weeks break from the art world, it's nice to find the soft hubbub of an opening again, seasoned with smelling-good hamburgers that are being cooked outside. We exchange impressions on the show and are quite impressed by the huge paintings representing imaginary mountain landscapes covered in snow.

Back home, we wait for our men to arrive: they have the same name, and they both are late. My G. went to a congress and the following drinks, Luana's G2 is arriving from Heathrow: "I still have 18 stops ahead!" an SMS she receives complain. We try the video on the window: tracing paper is stuck on the glass, the size adjusted, the decision to blacken the lower part of the window and to project just on the upper part made. Si Dolce e' il Tormento, the tune that accompanies and gives the title to the video, fills the room in loop. So sweet is the torment, but I would listen to it over and over again (and so will the public on the opening day, because we are leaving the sound on just for that night!) The moving objects reflect themselves in the windows of the building in front of us. Luana peeks at it from behind the tracing paper, and is happy about the effect.

People already have started to look up from the street, intrigued.

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