Site-specific installation of participatory public art
The project consists of a temporary public art intervention, the result of a collaboration with a group of boys and girls from kindergarten. This collaboration , in the form of artistic laboratory , has produced a series ofimaginary maps of the city produced by a set of texts and drawings made by the children. The maps were then projected to the ground at three points of the route which connects Piazza Libertà to the Museum of Contemporary Art in Lissone.
The workshop, divided into six meetings , led the kids reflect on the theme of the city and its representation , on the role of the museum and of art in general and on the meaning of sharing a project .
The intent of this project is to propose to the citizens of Lissone a participatory project that involves the city through the eyes and thoughts of its younger inhabitants and that let the kids (and with them their families) get closer to the museum through an experience of game, discovery and research.
Following a path already taken some time ago, which arises from a special interest in the sphere of social and prefers a participatory design methodology, the goal of this project is to try to bring the public closer to the places of art through a process in which citizens become actors and not just spectators of the work , actively participating in the cultural production and transformation, however temporary, of their city.
The work is intended as a street furniture project that contrasts in a light and playful tone the stereotypical iconography of Christmas lights. Proposing unusual sentences and images in unexpected places, the desire is to create a gap, or short-circuit, in the experience and the resulting interpretation of the urban landscape.
Also the immateriality of the projections, compared to neon signs, reflects the idea of the city as simultaneous events in a continuous transformation process and proposes a delicate and fluid intervention, antithetical to the heavy and static idea of the monument.
The role of artists becomes to give voice to the people involved creating a space for exchange and relationship and activating a process of shared knowledge and collaboration.
Since this is a reflection on the city and on the role that art can take within the urban structure, involving very young children means involving citizens of the future, who are also citizens of the present. Kids, with their natural wisdom, intuition and sensitivity, have the gift of expressing important things and profound concepts in simple words. With their point of view that is a bit lower than that of adults, children have the ability to get unexpected images of everyday life and to experience the city primarily as a relational space, as a place of places, as a network of possible meetings.
They appear to be able to read the ” urban text ” that unfolds in front of their eyes and tell us clearly that the men and women, and their children, are not in the city but the city. Its houses, its streets, its scents, are their thoughts and their reflection, being, like them, in perpetual mutation.
The children finally offer us a precious feeling, not only for dwell and know the city but for live and understand art: the wonder, that allows us to see in the usual, things that most people do not see.
It is in this sense of wonder that arises the choice of the title. The oxymoron “a map to get lost” means for artists, and perhaps for the child who has pronounce the phrase, a map to an unexpected and unknown place, that maybe is around the corner, but that we had never seen. The act of getting lost, that leaves its negative meaning, becomes a game and a metaphor for discovery, as in the best tradition of the Situationist “drift”.
The words and images of the city told by children constitute a sort of map of constellations, like a night sky turned upside down, that instead of staying at the top is ‘ wonderfully ‘ under the feet of those who walk down the streets.
Following the bright trails, as in the game of treasure hunt, the public is driven from Piazza Libertà, the symbolic city center, to the Museum, the promoter of this project and various cultural initiatives in the city.
Video documentation of the exhibition, Lissone (MB) 3.10.2009 – 31.01.2010
Video production UnDo.Net. Video realized by Marc Vincent Kalinka, 8’14”