Lunedì, 24 Settembre 2018
NEW YORK

Italian hits MoMA with 'treeman' for Earth Day

English
© ANSA

New York, April 22 - Celebrated Italian filmmaker
Michelangelo Frammartino is mixing Earth Day with contemporary
art at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) with what visitors have
dubbed 'The Treeman'.
The nickname comes from the subject of his installation
called 'Alberi' (Trees), on view at MoMA's PS1 gallery in Queens
from April 18-27 and part of the Tribeca Film Festival.
The film, which is essentially a 25-minute meditation on
trees, features a group of men who emerge from the woods dressed
in tree branches and leaves to be greeted by clapping town folk
in the square.
The performance-art piece, according to the artist, is
based on folklore from the hills of the southern Basilicata
region where the short was filmed.
According to the ritual, now lost to history, peasants
would welcome 'Romito', a tree-like man who rejected the idea of
migration and "planted his roots in his own land".
But the narrative is secondary to this film without
dialogue.
Projected on PS1's curved VW Dome screen, the viewer is
treated to a near-Imax experience in which peripheral vision is
immersed in crisp shots of vines and twigs, light glittering
through branches, and 'treemen' foraging through the woods as
the leaves crunch beneath their feet.
The sounds of such motions are masterfully reproduced for
the spectator.
The overall effect of the video, which runs on a continuous
loop, has been heralded by critics.
"In its images Alberi contemplates the disappearance of
mythological customs, like the tree-ritual, from contemporary
culture," reads the exhibit description. "On a deeper level,
however, the work conjures cinema's mystic and ritualistic
powers on the eve of the medium's own extinction".
Given the installation's timing around Earth Day, the word
"extinction" may carry undertones.
On Monday, environmentalists were out in full force across
the world.
Launched in 1970 in the United States, Earth Day today
involves as many as one billion people from around the planet
who vow to limit their negative impact on Earth and support
sustainability.
In Rome, activists stretched out a giant heart-shaped
banner inside the ancient Circus Maximus in the run-up to Earth
Day on Monday.
The sign, which read "I ♥ Arctic", was laid out Saturday as
part of an international Greenpeace campaign to block offshore
drilling in the Arctic Ocean.
Similar displays were unveiled in roughly 280 cities, from
Buenos Aires to Bangkok, and Copenhagen to Johannesburg.
"Our dependence on fossil fuels is erroneously associated
with progress and prosperity, when instead it brings destruction
to the environment and the economy," said Kumi Naidoo, executive
director of Greenpeace International.
"There is another way".
Photos of the event will be compiled in a book and
presented to the foreign ministers of countries in or near the
Arctic who are meeting in May at the Arctic Council in Kiruna,
Sweden.

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