We decided to work on the image of a puppet because it is a sculptural object capable of absorbing images of controlled moods within itself, thus amplifying its ownliving and disturbing significance, conveying a senseof mystery and emotionality. The puppet moves here on a video stage, placed high up rather like an icon, behind a suspended curtain of cables and LED lights. The puppet is the metaphor of an artist. The artist is a man who frees things even when he is himself tied up and controlled. The artist’s voice is not heard, but it’s there; it is like a live noise, just like that generated by themovements of the puppet. Specifically, the installationset up in the Archivio di Stato di Palermo (State Archives of Palermo) is inspired by the vicissitudes ofthe film director Vittorio De Seta. Several times, duringhis professional career, De Seta was subjected to the control of the authorities. His art, so close to the world ofthe humblest workers, fishermen, farmers and miners,was suspected of concealing a hidden agenda in favour of “communist” subversive societies. During the period of work undertake in the State Archives of Palermo, andthanks to the unique experience of the staff who workthere, we discovered the existence of a very unusual folder. Dated 1956, it contains numerous dossiers and reports concerning artists, directors, writers and journalists. The document, which immediately attracted our attention, was compiled by the Carabinieri of Petralia Sottana, a small town in the Parco delle Madonie. For us, this dossier became the symbol of what our video installation sought to communicate and we decided to display it at the entrance to the Sala delle Capriate, a place of absolute mystery and silence dedicated to the preservation of a non-organisable memory, an archive arranged in accordance with the non-rules of time and chance. Thousands and thousands of un-catalogueddocuments that time has transformed into stratifiedmatter, paper fossils, dust and faded ink.
The puppet is animated by Mimmo Cuticchio and wasmade specifically for this video installation by his family.
PROTOCOL no. 90/6
Site-specific video installation with sound
Sala delle Capriate – Archivio di Stato di Palermo
Commissioned by Manifesta12
Produced by Beatrice Bulgari for In Between Art Film
Editing and post production: Genny Petrotta
Sound recordist: Danilo Romancino
Audio post production: Danilo Romancino and Luca Rinaudo
Project Manager: Luca Bradamante
Organization and location manager: Genny Petrotta
Puppet created by: Associazione Figli d’arte Cuticchio and animated by Mimmo Cuticchio Technical Installation: Sinergie Group srl Palermo, Eletech srl Seveso
Very special thanks to: Beatrice and Nicola Bulgari
Thanks to: Alessia Carlino and In Between Art Film staff, Luca Gennati, Giacomo Pigliapoco, Filmoteca Regionale, Alessandro Rais and Sicilian Film Commission staff, Claudio Concetto Torrisi – Archivio di Stato, Christine Groth, Livio Spallino, Laura Barreca, Paola Nicolin,Federico Riggio.
Technical facilities: Co – Rent Palermo, Carrozzeria Rezza Roma, Sinergie Group srl Palermo, Eletech srl Seveso, Rino Cammarata, Almendramusic, Vima Torino