Curated by: Massimo Mininni
"If dead painters could talk to us about their visions on art, would they like to share their ideas with us?", This is the question asked by the artist Gianni Politi (Rome, 1986) and to which, in his intentions, the performance The dead do not die, scheduled for Thursday 28 October at Palazzo Barberini, should give an answer. And the curator Massimo Mininni adds: "This performance somehow aims to lead the public to reflect on the changes that the world of art has undergone over the centuries".
"For the museum this is a new foray into contemporary art - says Flaminia Gennari Santori, director of the Barberini Corsini National Galleries - a distinctive feature of the programming. Gianni Politi's performance is in fact the last stage of the dialogue and intertwining between past and present that began with the exhibition of Picasso's Parade in 2017, the Eco and Narciso exhibition in 2018, the Robert Mapplethorpe exhibition in 2019 ".
The dead do not die, created by Gianni Politi inspired by the museum's collection, develops as a theatrical piece in three acts, lasting just under an hour. The performance involves the entire palace, from the garden to the two large stairways, from the Pietro da Cortona hall to the rooms where the works of the selected artists are exhibited: Perin del Vaga (1501-1547), Lorenzo Lotto (1480-1556), Jacopo Tintoretto (1519-1594), Tiziano Vecellio (1488-1576), Annibale Carracci (1560-1609), Guido Reni (1575-1642), Pietro da Cortona (1597-1669). Why these artists? The choice comes from the recent experience of a Rome closed by Covid, of the deserted streets of a neighborhood, such as the Flaminio one where the artist lives, where the street signs with the names of the artists evoked the survival of ancient, evanescent, bewildered presences, ghostly.
It is thus imagined that the ghosts of these artists return after a long journey from the world of the dead to the world of the living to find their immortal works that have survived over the centuries. Once at the palace, the ghosts will try to be followed by the spectators, to involve them in the search for their works or those of their associates and / or enemies, and then dance in the great hall under the fresco of the Triumph of Divine Providence. The performance ends with the spectra moving away through Borromini's staircase with a slow and inexorable greeting and ending in the construction of a completely abstract oval shape at the end of the staircase.
These are mysterious, incorporeal figures, characterized by macabre elements, wrapped in a shroud made with canvases painted by Politi himself with a traditional technique, searching for the sixteenth-seventeenth-century colors that animate the masterpieces of the protagonists evoked to look inside, to question oneself in depth on the meaning of his action and on the role played by the artist in society.
The music specially composed by Diego Manfreda, characterized by a strong spiritualist component using reverbs and glitches of the synthesizer, will accompany all the movements of the performers. The costumes were created by Politi in collaboration with Monica Crognale and the choreography was also created by the artist in collaboration with Loredana Parrella and her production company TWAIN.