Curated by: Elena Agudio
From 16 October 2021 to 9 January 2022, the MA * GA in Gallarate (VA) hosts the exhibition The wall between us, the result of a long research process that the artists Ottonella Mocellin and Nicola Pellegrini have been carrying out for many years and that in 2020 he was the winner of the eighth edition of the Italian Council, the program for the promotion of contemporary art in the world of the Directorate General for Contemporary Creativity of the Ministry of Culture.
The work stems from a reflection on some of the most intricate legacies of the Cold War and involves communities of the Asian and particularly Vietnamese diaspora in Europe and North America, while questioning the personal relationship of artists with their stories.
In collaboration with artists, writers and activists, Mocellin and Pellegrini analyze their position as Italian adoptive parents with a daughter and a son born in Vietnam, reflecting on the intersection between belonging, kinship, history, memory, identity politics, as well as on existing intertwining between them and the different movements of memory that dot Berlin, the city in which they live.
That of the Berlin Wall, or rather its spectrum, thus becomes a recurring image that is a narrative tool from which their visual story develops.
Hence the title of the video installation, The wall between us, which documents a visionary journey through the German capital. A small sailboat moves along the streets of the city, along the path where the wall once stood.
On this boat, Ottonella Mocellin and Nicola Pellegrini and their family spend a day, intimate and ordinary, in the public space, navigating the city traffic in search of an imaginary place, where the memories and lives of those who have been divided by history can ideally meet. The video is thought of as a letter from the two artists to the biological mothers of their daughter and son.