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The syndrome of Griselda,

or the procession of the Ship

2017, Site-specific Installation

A co-production of Art.ur and Overtoon,

with the support of the City of Saluzzo, and

the Flanders State of the Art

Layers of variable sound constellations: 

2 Long Range Horn Speakers

8-channel sound field

Canvas painting, cinema/theatre chairs (row).

“The land where God did not finish Creation"

they believe only after man has disappeared will He return to finish His work.

The work is site-specific for Saluzzo Castle, Italy. Inspired by an enigmatic structure and its associations with the surrounding landscape - soundscape in a historical - utopian context.
The restoration project of the castle (2003-2004) was carried out by the architect Marco Dezzi Bardeschi, who integrated the technical premises for the construction of a metal structure in the rear courtyard. The title of the architect's notes and drawings, "Il nuovo blocco degli impianti: Fitzcarraldo sulla collina" (The New Block: Fitzcarraldo on the Hill), reveals that the construction refers to the eponymous character in Werner Herzog's film (1982), who is led by the utopian will to carry a massive steamship up a steep hill into the heart of the Amazon forest to realise his dream of building an opera house and importing a company of singers under the direction of the Italian tenor Enrico Caruso.
This part of the construction is immersed in a visionary and acoustic dimension that combines a "floating" level and an "underworld": Every 15 minutes, a ship's horn announces the arrival or departure of a ship, which for the rest of the time is accompanied by periodically creaking sounds and Caruso's voice. A row of cinema chairs facing the mulberry garden indicates the "scene" and the direction of listening. At the entrance to the mulberry garden, a painting (gonfalon) of two fishes tied together with a ribbon refers to the emblem of the Cavassa family (vicars of the Marquisate of Saluzzo), also associated with the myth of Aphrodite and Eros. The fishes introduce the imaginary world and link the strong will of Fitzcarraldo with the patience of Griselda, a young peasant girl whose loyalty is tested by Gualtiery, the Marquis of Saluzzo, in a series of cruel tortures reminiscent of the biblical Book of Job (Decameron, 10th day/10th story, Giovanni Boccaccio), a story that is also significant for marking a point at which the repetition syndrome becomes a full-blown counterfeit consciousness. Griselda's oral history is told under the trees, composed as a constellation around Caruso's voice, which travels through the field as a repetitive, sequential and persistent echo.

Fitzcarraldo sulla collina_architect.png
PLAY IN, Castiglia, Piazza Castello, Saluzzo, Italy (6 May 2017 - 25 June 2017)
Photos © Marco Sasia

Long Range Horn Speakers                                                                                  Under the trees 8 distant speakers play simultaneously in loop

00:00 / 15:07
00:00 / 00:43
00:00 / 00:43
00:00 / 00:43
00:00 / 00:43
00:00 / 00:43
00:00 / 00:43
00:00 / 00:43
00:00 / 00:43
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