XII edition

The life of things 
and the invisible qualities of objects 

22 – 28 September 2022,
from h 19:00 to h 24:00

After the Museo Civico di Storia Naturale and the Planetario Hoepli, Video Sound Art, a contemporary art festival since 2011, presents its twelfth edition with a programme of installations, videos, performance interventions and a screening programme at the Teatro Carcano.

The exhibition path unfolds through the spaces of the of the historic theatre which, from the basement to the gallery, showcases the voices of the contemporary, ranging from video to publishing installations. 

The theme investigates the life of things. How do objects speak? How do they function outside their context?

Starting with the reflections of the artists in the exhibition and in collaboration with the Dutch publishing project MacGuffin, the festival focuses on the unexplored possibilities that each object embodies in relation to history, identity and social relations, attempting to unveil political and social conditioning – the invisible qualities of matter.

Each edition is preceded by a study of the social and historical characteristics of the venues selected, with the twofold aim of connecting the installations with the venue – its use, walls, ceilings, etc. – and testing the adaptability of art within society. The encounter between the festival staff, the artists, the curators and the host institutions involves constant dialogue. Curating is about embracing different worldviews by sharing the concept of authorship.
Laura Lamonea, curator of the exhibition.

Chain chain chain

On the occasion of the launch of the new issue of the Dutch project MacGuffin – a design research platform exploring the life of ordinary things – the main stage of the theatre hosts an installation and a podcast corner.

Image from The Chain issue #11, Ph. Mathijs Labadie
Read more about the MacGuffin project

From hip-hop jewellery, to resistance movements, from new slavery to blockchains technologies, the installation Chain, chain, chain explores our complex relationship with the chain and its contrasting characteristics of connection, decoration and restriction.
There will also be a podcast corner where visitors can listen to the 2Chains podcast series accompanying the issue, created by researchers and curators working in the Netherlands Alix de Massiac and Alex Furtado Melville.

Discover the MacGuffin project >

Mika Rottenberg
Cosmic generator

In the gallery of the auditorium, the artist Mika Rottenberg presents the video Cosmic generator.

Mika Rottenberg, Cosmic Generator, 2017, monochannel video installation, sound, color, 26’36”.
Read more and meet the artist

Starting with videos filmed in different shops in Calexico (California), Mexicali (Mexico) and Yiwu (China), the artist intends to recreate the imaginary life of an object, from its production in the factory to the moment it is sold. A tunnel system establishes a trading connection between various places and actors, suggesting a reflection on how certain objects are allowed to circulate in the world freely whilst on the other hand, for other objects the distance of a few meters could take a really long time. 

Whatch the Mika Rottenberg interview >

Letizia Cariello (Letia)
Con te

In the high foyer Letizia Cariello (Letia) presents a complex installation composed of the video work Con te and of a sculptural element.

Letizia Cariello (Letia), Con te, 2021, video, 6′
Read more

Con te is a sequence of 21 videos shot by the artist in the Piedmont countryside. They depict green wheat moved by the wind in a field located in front of a small country cemetery. The installation forces the viewer to raise his head,turning it into a tunnel. The disorientation experienced is not a trick to produce discomfort, but a system which allows  the observer’s upright body to lose its mental awareness in order to access another kind of gravity and experience of the body. The light sound of the wind moving the green wheat reaches the visitor who is ideally swimming.
L’ombra mia mi ha fatto paura is the title of the fabric sculpture, with a calendar inscribed on it. A symbol of instability – a kind of refuge – the tent belongs to the nomadic culture.
Letizia Cariello’s research is aimed at reconstructing connections and relationships between matter and spaces. From trees to teapots, from cups to photographs, her sign crosses everyday objects to materialise time in a perceptible form.

Caterina Morigi
Making Special

Caterina Morigi, Making Special, soli, 2022, Marmo Azul Bahia, engraving, 43 x 50 x 2 cm.
Read more

The artist revisits man’s traces embedded in the stone of rock engravings in a contemporary key, producing five works that differ in theme and style. The choice of stones, in collaboration with the Masutti company that has been working marble and granite since 1900, was the first step in the realisation of the works. In this process of study, sedimentation and realisation, the sculptural series Making Special condenses the characteristics of human errors with the imperfections of machines and the uncertainty of interpretation, overturning the forms of the ancient to bring them into the present.
Caterina Morigi’s research focuses on the less obvious aspects of matter. To deal with the substance of things, she uses a close gaze, observing the effect of time on forms, on the surface and in depth, ensuring that the work is always dependent on its physical transformations and connected to the surrounding space.

New productions

Oli Bonzanigo
Site-specific installation

Reference of the artist
Read more

The artist Oli Bonzanigo presents a new site-specific installation by imprisoning a helium balloon in a fishing net across the theatre courtyard.
The net is transformed into a physical but also social tool, an artistic medium for creating relationships between people. Starting from Naum Gabo’s concept of ‘stereometric transparency’, the artist investigates the transformation of solids into light forms and the tension of matter in space. Oli Bonzanigo’s artistic practice covers a wide range of languages, including sculpture, drawing, installation and photography, focusing on the origins and movements of raw materials and how these have influenced the reciprocal dynamics between civilisations.

Daniel De Paula
Complex installation

The theatre basement, normally inaccessible to the public, will host Daniel De Paula’s complex installation composed of the video work circulação, sculptural pieces and sound elements.

Daniel de Paula, circulação, 2019, video-negotiation, open-ended duration, in continuous process of sedimentation of footage, Ph. Everton Ballardin
Read more and meet the artist

Daniel De Paula creates an immersive underground landscape punctuated by new sculptures in dialogue with video circulação.
The work, initiated in 2019, collects videos granted to the artist by multinationals that probe and surveil infrastructural structures active in extraction of natural resources.
Through strategies such as negotiating with institutions and the displacement of everyday objects, his works reflect on the power dynamics within political and social structures that inevitably shape places, objects and relationships. 

Whatch Daniel De Paula interview >

Screening program and performances

The exhibition will be enriched by performative interventions and a video dance screening programme with a selection of national and international titles aimed at awakening the expression of physical language in relation to the things that surround us.

Candoco Dance Company and Jo Bannon
Feeling Thing

Candoco Dance Company invites the public to reconsider their sensibilities in relation to the vitality of everyday objects through the film Feeling Thing by Jo Bannon, following its presentation at the Tate Modern in London as part of July’s #TateLates programme dedicated to inclusivity.

Candoco Dance Company e Jo Bannon, Feeling Thing, 2022, 23′
Read more and watch the trailer

The video Feeling Thing presents three performers establishing an intimate dialogue with an object: a ladder, a fan, a hoover. The accompaniment is provided by ASMR – Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response – that is the sensation of relaxing tingling in the back of the head when actions such as whispering, hair brushing, scratching and hitting are heard or experienced. The viewer is thus invited to immerse themselves in a sensory, illogical and disturbing space in which all things are alive.

Whatch the trailer >

Silvia Giordano
Fresh oranges into the Ocean
Performance site-specific

Silvia Giordano, Fresh oranges into the Ocean, 2021, 12′
Read more and watch the trailer

Three oranges trace the delicate passage of three young women into adulthood through a metaphorical narration of their present condition and their projections into the future. In an intimate feminine journey between high and low tides, turbulence and contradictions, calm and turmoil, Fresh oranges into the ocean invites a poetic reflection on today’s existential themes in relation to nature. The images evoked by the bodies transport us to an another place: it is there that absurdity and poetry intersect, questions float and subtexts (there) reflect.

Whatch the trailer >

Site-specific performance

The choreographer Silvia Giordano will present a site-specific performance in relation to the installations in the exhibition. The intervention is currently being devised.

Park So-Hyun
Pallae: Womanhood Story

Park Sohyun, Pallae Womanhood Story, 2021, 25′
Read more and watch the trailer

Five dancers spend the night washing clothes in a stream on stage in this new version designed for the screen and produced in 2021. The contemporary dance performance Pallae by Nam Jeongho was first presented in 1993.

Whatch the trailer >

Open Call
The invisible qualities of objects

On the occasion of the 12th edition, Video Sound Art launches a new open call for artists to produce new performance works.
The call is open until 30 July. The projects will be judged by a jury composed of leading figures from the art world: museum operators, critics, curators and artists. The winner, supported by the curatorial and technical staff, will participate in an artistic residency in Tuscany, with the support of the Associazione Amici di Duccio committed to the organisation of residencies and performances in support of young artists. The work will be presented to the public during the 12th edition at the Teatro Carcano.

Go to the dedicated page >

Co-design projects

Video Sound Art in the year 2022 won the Per la Cultura call for proposals issued by the Fondazione Cariplo with a project realised in collaboration with the Liceo Volta in Milan. The project, by implementing experimental co-design practices, involves students, artists and professionals – cultural operators, architects, curators – in a co-design process at the end of which the high school students will organise their own festival.
The questions focus on the role of cultural spaces in relation to young audiences, who continue to be the passive recipients of choices made elsewhere. What practices can reverse this trend? Is it possible to involve users in order to return to sharing that great collective rite that is culture? During the opening days of the exhibition, students will be present in the theatre to accompany visitors to discover the exhibition through cultural mediations.

XII edition
The life of things
and the invisible qualities of objects

22 – 28 September 2022

Opening times: from h 19:00 to h 24:00*
*Saturday 24 September from h 19:00 to h 1:00.

Opening: Thursday 22 September, h 19:00

Venue: Teatro Carcano, Corso di Porta Romana, 63, MM3 Crocetta, Milan

XII edition
The life of things
and the invisible qualities of objects

22 – 28 September 2022

Opening times:
from h 19:00 to h 24:00*
*Saturday 24 September from
h 19:00 to h 1:00.

Thursday 22 September, h 19:00

Teatro Carcano
Corso di Porta Romana, 63,
MM3 Crocetta, Milan

With the contribution of:
Fondazione Cariplo
Mondriaan Fund
Netherlands embassy

With the patronage of:
Comune di Milano – Milano è Viva

Curated by Video Sound Art
Artistic direction and curator
Laura Lamonea 
Open Call Coordinator 
Francesca Colasante 
Screening Program Coordinator 
Bianca Ambrosio
Lino Palena e Anita Wilczega
Visual identity
Ilaria Roglieri 

Press Office
Francesca Mainardi

Press Kit