The Transitory State of Possible Stories
a solo show by Valentina Bonizzi
curated by Luisa Perlo | a.titolo
on Thursday, 28th of February 2019
THE TRANSITORY STATE OF POSSIBLE STORIES
28 February – 22 March 2019
ZETA – Tirana
How do we exist inside the law? And what will be told of it in the end?
These are the questions that are reflected in the selection of works by Valentina realized and produced in Albania between 2017 and 2019. The works have been produced in a series of actions with a participatory element made by the artist through two ‘counter-architectures’: the Prime Minister’s Office Building, built during the Fascist occupation between 1939 and 1941, and the city of Kamza, considered the periphery of the city Capital, built by migration coming particularly from the north of the country after the end of the Communist Regime (1991).
The film Homage to Kafka was made in the Centre for Openness and Dialogue (COD), a governmental agency created in 2015 with the aim of keeping the main door of the government building open to the public. The work is a reflection on the quotidian experience of the waiting time of the law, inspired by the parable Before the Law, contained in The Trial by Franz Kafka, published for the first time in 1915. The film sees the participation of the stenographer who has worked in the Prime Minister’s Building for almost fifty years – and with her role holds in her hands the possibility of the transmission of history – to whom Bonizzi has entrusted the transcription of the enigmatic story of the great bohemian writer.
In Forumi i Atyre (Their Forum) we see questions becoming form in a participatory way, as if their very grammar could not be hold together and make sense otherwise. A Forum is, in its original meaning, a public space in which the principal political, social, commercial, cultural question regarding the city are discussed. In the roman urban plan, the forum has a central position, so that the knowledge there produced can be transmitted and diffused in the principal activities of the city. But what happens when a forum is placed at the margins of society, on the periphery? Does it produce knowledge? From these reflections Forumi I Atyre develops, in collaboration with the activists group ATA, whom in Kamza have created a devise for cultural discussion and resistance. The video installation is the result of a quest of the city as a normative system, crossed by written and non-written rules, social and patriarchal customs, practised in the urban territory of Kamez during a cycle of laboratories and actions shared with ATA and groups of young people and other artists and activists.
In the exhibition, the two narrations, the central and the peripheral, become complementary: the system of power in which we live is included in the written word and its oral transmission, the permanent and the temporary, what appears concrete and the series of fluid stories inhabiting individuals and communities. The space between these meanings is the place where the artistic work places its poetic potential, or the possible one, which is about our relation with the law and its narration.
For the exhibition the publication The Transitory State of Possible Stories will be presented, with the contribution of Luisa Perlo (curator, a.titolo), BrunildaPali (researcher at Leuven Institute of Criminology, KU Leuven) and Diana Malaj (activist/ATA).
The exhibition is realized with the support of the Italian Institute of Culture in Tirana.
Forumi I Atyre was supported by Leviz Albania.
Valentina Bonizzi (b. Milan: lives and works between UK and Albania)
Digging into archives and communities, Valentina Bonizzi’s work highlights issues of social justice in relation to the politics of time in specific contexts. Bonizzi works with a variety of media such as film, photography, sound and actions in public spaces.
Valentina holds a Master of Research in Visual Practices from Glasgow School of Art and a PhD (AHRC funded) from the University of Dundee (Visual Research Centre). Selected exhibitions include: Autostrada Biennale in Kosovo, MAXXI, Rome, the National Galleries of Scotland, British School at Rome, Stills Gallery in Edinburgh and Fondazione Fotografia Modena, Cooper Gallery, Dundee. She has presented her work in a number of institutions such as Ramallah Academy of the Arts, Palestine, Akademie der Künste, Berlin, Cittadellarte Fondazione Pistoletto, Biella, Villa Romana, Florence, CCA in Glasgow.