8th Thessaloniki Biennial of Contemporary Art, Central Exhibition “Being as Communion”. Curated by Maria-Thalia Carras. Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki, Thessaloniki. 04.03 – 21.05.2023
Agricola Cornelia S.p.A. 1973-’81. The Archive (1), dettaglio, Fondazione Baruchello, Roma. Ph Alessia Calzecchi.
The central exhibition Being as Communion of the 8th Thessaloniki Biennial of Contemporary Art aims to critically reflect on being as community, on the concept of coexistence, and on collaborative practices that imagine ways of working with the earth, creating radical pedagogical tools, pioneering ecological activism, and expanding the horizon of how we can live together. The works of contemporary artists herald multiple forms of communion and collaboration, namely with our host city’s past, with forests and woodlands, with the land, with animals, and among humans. They focus on inclusive practices that explore different forms of care, love, and mutuality, and investigate the human impact on our shared ecosystems by suggesting more equitable forms of existence for human survival, and testing the extent to which we can learn new ways of being with the world around us, rather than dominating it.
In this spirit, Baruchello participates in the central exhibition of the Thessaloniki Biennial by presenting a living archive of Agricola Cornelia S.p.A., with notes, drawings, photographs, artworks, diaries, and books that testify to the action Baruchello conducted from 1973 to 1981 in the Santa Cornelia countryside on the outskirts of Rome, through which he set out to work on the relationship between art, agriculture, animal husbandry, aesthetics, and the systems that regulate economic and cultural values. Representing the artist’s filmic production is the work Il grano (1975), which documents the different stages of wheat ripening in varying weather conditions in the field with a fixed shot every day, for one minute a day. Agricola Cornelia S.p.A.‘s living archive also includes the installation Nascita e morte del pane (1981-2014), a project created during the years of Agricola Cornelia S.p.A. as a reflection on bread, an object imagined by Baruchello as a body during the various stages of life (chained bread, sliced bread), starting from birth (bread in swaddling clothes), until its end (buried bread), after which it itself becomes the posthumous narrative of its life (written bread).
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