Sasha Vinci
Maria Grazia Galesi

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Vinci/Galesi: the emotional threads of a journey

by Eleonora Raspi


“Places encourage movement, lead you on a path, carry you through things, create different perspectives, find space inside of you and, vice-versa, allow you to connect a place to a concept, an idea, a thought. And they turn them into space.” Giuliana Bruno


Flower against flower, green against green, nature against nature. Two bodies move slowly on a steep land, among the stones of an abandoned factory, on the rocks of a mining site, in the hidden muds of a blooming field. Light creates shadows on the color-changing and ever-moving cloak, the performer’s body carries contrasting, never-ending sounds; then, it finally stops, becoming one with nature’s apparent immobility. Suddenly, it is dark; flowers wither, the performer’s gaze suggests a distant thought, that of an end.


MUTABIS is a project that comprises a series of artworks-performances, ideated by the artistic duo Vinci/Galesi. It operates as a metamorphosis in fieri, with a universal nature, able to adapt to, and establish a contact with, every place it encounters. The uniqueness of the project lies in its ability of engaging with multiple creative mediums: from performance to video, from photography to sound, from sculpture to drawing. Each medium explores and enhances/emphasizes one aspect of MUTABIS.


Vinci/Galesi presented the first act of MUTABIS on the occasion of the contemporary art event ALTER, in the Sicilian town of Chiaramonte Gulfi, on July 31st, 2015. The artists, wrapped in a flower-covered cloak, walked for long hours through and around the streets, piazzas, and landmarks of the town, ending their performance inside the Chiesa di Santa Teresa. Here, in a last moment of transfiguration, an embrace unites the two figures into one. For their second act, Vinci and Galesi choose places filled with memories; on March 11th, 2016, MUTABIS travels through Scicli and opens itself to the gaze of director Alessandro Zangirolami, and the sound experimentation with sound maker Antonio Mainenti. Here, MUTABIS becomes a three-day journey, far from the daily life of the urban center; instead, it touches, perceives and experiences other places, particularly those that are rarely visited by people and thus become invisible to the public eyes.


MUTABIS is a process of transfiguration of the human body into a natural element; it implies a merging of two entities into one. The performer is invested, more than dressed, with a floral cloak: a habitus coming from the same natural world, which he elects himself as a messenger of. As the creative act unfolds, the distance between body and human perception (as well as that between body and nature) becomes thinner; the rough, at times damaged (although very elusive) physicality of the flesh finds a clearer echo in the inevitable corruption of the flowers on the cloak. What has traditionally come to perception as a dichotomy (human/natural) now becomes a harmonious fusion of voices in MUTABIS.


The travel that the two artists partake, including five exterior and one interior locations, begins and takes inspiration from the history and legends of the Sicilian community, as well as from their personal life. Along this journey, the eye of the camera lingers on the artists, sticks with them, not gently nor complacently, and follows them everywhere: from a distance until the moment of their disappearance in the nature; and very close until it touches the flowers and reaches beyond, and finally penetrates the performers’ flesh. The sound that is generated in the process both follows and leads the action, modulating itself to the artists’ movements and emotions. The rapport that emerges between the camera and Vinci/Galesi is haptic, and mirrors the