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Wurmkos: Andare con le radici (Going with the roots) at PAV, Turin

June 10–October 22, 2023

Six years after their solo show La Passione del Grano in 2017, the Wurmkos collective returns to the PAV with the previously unseen piece Andare con le radici (Going with the Roots).

The exhibition, which is consistent with the urgencies highlighted in the previous double-handed solo exhibitions by Marcelo Expósito and Oliver Ressler, and is curated by Marco Scotini, identifies in the plant world an environment from which to select new models of life aimed at imagining virtuous forms of social cohabitation, in an attempt to unseat the constitutional hierarchies of neoliberal politics.

The Wurmkos visual arts laboratory, established in 1987 in Sesto San Giovanni, is a “Basaglia type” experience (the psychiatrist Franco Basaglia advocated for the closure of psychiatric facilities in Italy) that connects art with psychological pain without attempting to give redemption goals. As with all of the group’s other activities, individuals taking part and collaborating, with or without distress, in the project exhibited at the PAV include artists, critics, and those involved in the numerous acts of project creation, growth, and development. Andare con le radici (Going with the Roots) began to take shape in the spring of 2020 and is the product of a voyage of self-reflection and development, the topic of which is principally the methodology used by the group itself. As part of this process, the militant thinker Ptr A. Kropotkin’s theory of mutual aid becomes a fundamental reference point: a primordial thrust at the heart of every form of biological and social life, mutual aid serves as a guiding principle in the evolution of life on Earth.

Various examples of alliances between plants, fungus, and various kinds of life demonstrate how, in nature, survival in situations that look unsuitable for maintaining life may be achieved through reciprocal assistance. Knowing and studying the living beings that have inhabited the planet Earth for much longer than humans means learning new strategies from elements that have developed the best adaptation tools, and, as Stefano Mancuso points out, by studying biodiversity, we can cultivate perspectives that help us understand our pluralities. In the urban subsoil, far from a preoccupied core, artists with diverse journeys, like various types of plants, intertwine stories and signs that do not need to be deciphered but are just taken in.

The show begins with an underfoot device/work in which the space is envisioned for living as a ground, a piazza, a universe, a flow that accommodates a community of plants that no longer adheres to an anthropocentric vision. The collaborative work investigates space not only as a visual field, but also as a setting in which hierarchies may be experienced and abolished, shifting from a vertical to a horizontal situation.

Andare con le radici (Going with the Roots) integrates our bodies with the body of the terrain via a process of transformation and valorization of difference, viewing the workshop as a plural habitat. A slew of trees that, when combined, form a forest: an ecosystem founded on the interdependence of creatures, a massive, living texture whose existence is supported by the diversity of its constant constituents.

Andare con le radici (Going with the roots) will open in conjunction with the collective exhibition The Parliament of Things with Chiara AntonelliDavide BarberiAlessandro CavalliniTraian Cherecheș and Chiara Scodeller curated by Marco Scotini, linking the production by the historic Milanese collective with a generation of young artists who trained in a Masters in Visual Arts and Curatorial Studies and the Academic Masters in Art and Ecology on the Milan campus of NABA, the Nuova Accademia di Belle Arti.

Curated by Marco Scotini.

Parco Arte Vivente (PAV)
Via Giordano Bruno 31
10134 Turin

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