• Domestic Demolition

    Date posted: August 23, 2010 Author: jolanta
    Born into a place is one case. Living there means choosing it and adapting to it. I am Loredana Longo. I was born in Sicily and live there today, a beautiful place of strong character, full of contradictions like the south of Italy and the south of Europe. As an artist, I feel this tension. It enchants me, even if it provokes a strong inner conflict. Within the past years I have developed a consistent theme in my work. I call it the “aesthetics of destruction.” I developed this concept from a personal perspective; in fact, most of my artworks are autobiographical and describe a familiar conflict. It now has turned into a collective vision, always ironic and provocative. Fascinated by the decaying, baroque interiors so typical of the island I live on, I created the Explosion project.   

    Loredana Longo

    Loredana Longo, Explosion #14 Sweets, 2007. Site-specific video/installation, Francesco Pantaleone Artecontemporanea, Palermo, Italy. Courtesy of Francesco Pantaleone Artecontemporanea.

    Born into a place is one case. Living there means choosing it and adapting to it.

    I am Loredana Longo. I was born in Sicily and live there today, a beautiful place of strong character, full of contradictions like the south of Italy and the south of Europe. As an artist, I feel this tension. It enchants me, even if it provokes a strong inner conflict. Within the past years I have developed a consistent theme in my work. I call it the “aesthetics of destruction.” I developed this concept from a personal perspective; in fact, most of my artworks are autobiographical and describe a familiar conflict. It now has turned into a collective vision, always ironic and provocative.

    Fascinated by the decaying, baroque interiors so typical of the island I live on, I created the Explosion project. I constructed a series of domestic tableaux, everyday life, each representing the intimacy of a family reunion. The tableaux are blown up while a camera records the explosion. Then I reconstruct the tableaux. The explosion is an act of domestic terrorism. The idea behind the project is that, although in a physical sense the explosion is a violent and destructive it represents an occasion for reconstruction, a means to repair and revive what has been subjected to abuse.

    In the series of artwork Souvenir, I shot at the wall, hitting those objects belonging to me. The bullets penetrated the wall. Immediately after, I took a circular saw and cut out a section of the wall. I removed it as a souvenir. The intent here is to preserve the memory of an event through an object. Though simultaneously I still pursue the idea of destruction and reconstruction.

    In my last installation, for the AIM Biennale in Marrakech, I created a mock safety cell of the prison in Guantanamo. Its walls were cloaked in mirrors that were illuminated by a flickering light; all the interior objects were grey. Metal chains suspended the cell. It looked like a raucous chamber of extravagant amusement. The mirror reflected the image of the spectator over and over again, giving the impression of freedom, but freedom is nothing more than a mirror’s play.

    As I have said, my island is a place of contradiction and my love is equally contradictory. It is my home, my family, my natural environment, but it is also my prison.

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