Invited to the fifth appointment of t-space X MAO , Jacopo Miliani presents an installation entitled Hidden Flowers in the museum spaces.
The project on display is the development of a research conducted in Tokyo in 2017 by Miliani together with the semiotician and curator Sara Giannini. The object of this investigation are the stories around some homoerotic magazines intended for the Japanese gay community of the 70s-80s-90s.
The research, mostly conducted in the bars of the Shinjuku-ni-chome district of Tokyo, produced the volume Whispering Catastrophe in which the theme of the visual censorship of the male genital organs - still in force in Japan - opens up to a personal reflection against -identity that looks towards another culture to deconstruct that of belonging . This practice finds an inverted equivalent in the works of authors such as Yukio Mishima or of the translator/editor Tastuhiko Shibusawa who look to Italy, Greece and France to recontextualize some imaginaries of Western homosexual culture in Japan.
The Whispering Catastrophe publication also consists of a collection of photographs from magazines aimed at men who love men. On the pages of these magazines the superimposition of images - necessary to respect the censorship envisaged by the Japanese moral and legal code - opens up to the construction of a complex visual language with which Miliani and Giannini interact, undermining their own cultural identity and trying to interpret a code that does not belong to him.
The exhibition echoes the dark spaces of Tokyo bars, which were the main research locations for the editorial project. The stories and images on display are proposed as residues, fragments and whispered voices in order to induce the viewer towards an experience similar to that of being in a foreign and hidden place which, like the censored images, gives those who pass through it a mysterious seduction, necessary to stimulate an interpretation that can be as fallacious as it is creative.