WILD THINKING | Wilderness: from being an obstacle to a new way of thinking

A public meeting curated by Antonio Irre

With prof. Annalisa Metta, prof. Piero Dominici and Caterina Benincasa

Recorded interviews to prof. Ninkovic and prof. Castiello

UZBEKISTAN NATIONAL PAVILLION – LA BIENNALE DI VENEZIA | Saturday 12th, November | 3.30 p.m.-5.30 p.m.

A meeting about Nature’s wilderness: what is and what is not? How can unpredictability help us build a better world?

Antonio Irre, artist and scientist, proposes a meeting to collectively reason about how Art and science can help us to understand the world. Considering Wilderness, Complex Adaptive Systems Theory and Art&Science relationships, we could change our point of view and learn how to deal with the unpredictable. And welcome it.

Opening: (3.30 p.m.)

The Infinite Garden | Theatrical itinerant performance by Antonio Irre

inspired by Italo Calvino’s “Palomar”, Goethe’s “Metamorphosis of Plants” and from the Theory of Complex Adaptive Systems.

The show is designed as an imaginative guided tour at the garden of the house of Mr. Palomar, so the spectator is being guided into a walk, developed in three stops.

The theatrical performance explores life starting from definitions: what is a weed and what a cultivated herb? Poetic words invite the spectator to reflect and rethink his/her way of thinking.

The lawn is essentially a cultural construct, a decorative object not only in our houses but also the composed mind, contemplating something uniform, controllable (although with some effort) but mainly something compact and homogeneous. Variety is our real nightmare. The diversity that arises among things casts threatening shadows on our expectations of normality, symmetry, stasis. Nature is not this way and neither are we, who are part of it. Multiplicity and diversity, variety and exchange, transformation and hybridization are the phenomena that manifest the design of nature beyond our preconceived notions and empirical categorizations. Nature gives each place its inimitable uniqueness. Observed closely, the lawn is an ecosystem rich with species, interdependent in their struggle for life and death and at times e between flora and fauna. As Mr. Palomar says the lawn is as the Universe, or better yet the lawn is like life itself. [Extract from the text of Silvia Petronici, curator]

TALK (4.00 pm)

Introduction by Antonio Irre, including recorded interviews: Plant communication and behavior (prof. Ninkovic, Ekology Center, SLU, Uppsala, Sweden, and prof. Umberto Castiello, Università di Padova)

  • Caterina Benincasa, curator and expert in Art&Science, will talk about art&science approaches.
  • Prof. Annalisa Metta, architect and researcher, will talk about landscape and wilderness.
  • Prof. Piero Dominici, sociologist and philosopher, will introduce Complex Adaptive Systems.

Open mic will follow!

The guests:

Caterina Benincasa has a mixed background in Physics, Philosophy, History of Science, Aesthetics, Contemporary Art and World Heritage Studies. Currently curator at European Commission’s Joint Research Center SciArt project, her competences and interests lie at the crossroads of science-art-heritage, driven by the need to communicate the beauty of research and curiosity. Her activity focuses on transdisciplinary, art-science collaborations, arts&heritage, with art as a mode of research and inquiry. She co-founded KLAS (Knowledge Link Through Art & Science) – an artist-in-residence programme of the Max Planck Society and the University of Groningen. She initiated Innovate Heritage, an ongoing programme endorsed by UNESCO to foster dialogue and knowledge exchange between the contemporary arts and heritage. She is a Member of the Advisory network of the Schering Stiftung, as an Art-Science Expert.

Prof. Annalisa Metta, a graduate in architecture from Roma Tre University, Ph. in Architecture of Parks, Gardens and Spatial Planning at the Universities Mediterranea of Reggio Calabria and Federico II of Naples, is associate professor in Landscape Architecture at the Department of Architecture Roma Tre University. Her research turns to theoretical-critical insights and applied experiences, all inherent to the landscape, at different spatial and temporal scales, with a focus on public space. She has lectured at universities and major research institutions. Books include Wild and the City. Landscape architecture for Lush Urbanism (Libria, 2019, with M. L. Olivetti).

Prof. Piero Dominici, sociologist and philosopher, Fellow of the World Academy of Art & Science (WAAS) and Official Delegate to UNESCO, UN expert and invited speaker, is Scientific Director of the International Research and Education Programme CHAOS and Director (Scientific Listening) at the Global Listening Center. Vice President of the World Complexity Science Academy (WCSA) and Member of the International Political Science Association (IPSA), he teaches Public Communication, Sociology of Social Complexity, Global Networks and Security and Intelligence. Complex Systems and Networks, at the University of Perugia.

As scientific researcher, educator, author and international speaker, his main areas of expertise and interest encompass (hyper)complexity, complex systems, transdisciplinarity and knowledge sharing in the fields of education, systems theory, technology, intelligence, security, citizenship and communication. Member of the MIUR Register of Revisers (Italian Ministry of Higher Education and Research) and Fellow of the European Complex Systems Society, he is also standing member of several of the most prestigious national and international scientific committees. Author of numerous essays, scientific articles and books.

Academic Researcher (full-time), he has a Ph.D. in “Social Theory and research” at the University of Rome “La Sapienza” (rating: excellent) and won a Post Doc Fellowships at the Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering of the University of Roma Tre. As Senior Lecturer, he has taught at the Universities of Sassari, L’Aquila, Teramo and Siena. He was member of some projects of research at national and international level. His main research interests are: organizational communication, complex organizations, Knowledge Society and ethics. In particular, between scientific interests, he deals with systems theory and complexity theory in relation to organizational contexts. Dominici has participated as a speaker to national and international conferences. He writes and collaborates with scientific journals.

Antonio Irre Catalano (1980) is an italian independent artist, performer and researcher, with specific experience in the field of Art, Science and Interaction. He is currently developing site-specific and audience-specific performances, public art, relational artworks and visual art, exploring the borders between Third Theatre and Performance Art. Starting from Art and Science as ways of Knowledge he works on SciArt research projects about plant communication.

After graduating in Pharmaceutical Chemistry, he completed his studies with a Master in Bioethics, an interdisciplinary Master in Cognitive Systems and Interactive Media at the University Pompeu Fabra, a Minor in Management of Artistic Enterprises. He is trained as actor as part of the independent theatre company Aulò teatro and as artist working with curator Silvia Petronici. Among the many workshops he studied with Eugenio Barba and Julia Varley (Odin Teatret), Gary Brackett (Living Theatre), Luigi Maria Musati, Mario Barzaghi, Gabriele Vacis. In parallel to the artistic activity, he deals with cultural design, conceiving and organizing innovative formats as art practice.

Uzbekistan National Pavilion

Debuting at the 59th International Art Exhibition La Biennale di Venezia, the National Pavilion of Uzbekistan presents Dixit Algorizmi – The Garden of Knowledge, curated and designed by architecture and research studio Space Caviar and Sheida Ghomashchi. 

Dixit Algorizmi – The Garden of Knowledge aims to question the myths and origin narratives surrounding modern technologies, using the lens of contemporary art practices to explore their forgotten roots and overlooked resonances with distant places, times and cultures. The project stems from a reflection on the seminal work of Muhammad ibn Musa al-Khwārizmī, a scientist and polymath born and raised in the city of Khiva (present-day Uzbekistan).

The Pavilion takes an innovative approach, instead of exhibiting works it hosts a diverse program of workshops and public events, including performance and talk promoted by Antonio Irre. 

Commissioner: Gayane Umerova, Executive Director of the Foundation for the Development of Art and Culture under the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Uzbekistan. 

Special Support: Saida Mirziyoyeva, Deputy Chairperson of the Council of the Foundation for the Development of Art and Culture under the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Uzbekistan.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s