Franco Vaccari

From December 11, 2014 to January 31, 2015 the Fondazione Morra Greco will be hosting Rumori telepatici, new solo exhibition by Franco Vaccari. The exhibition, organized by the Fondazione Donnaregina per le arti contemporanee in collaboration with the Fondazione Morra Greco, is part of the Progetto XXI exhibition project.

Franco Vaccari. Rumori Telepatici

Rumori telepatici (Telephatic Static) is the title of Franco Vaccari’s first solo exhibition in Naples within the ambit of PROGETTO XXI. In the exhibition, the manifestation of the artist’s sign occurs through the display of works configured as instruments of evocation, in the representation of a research affirmed and defined through encounter and contingency. The work, which is deliberately denied the status of an aesthetic object, becomes the instrument by which to attract the involved attention of the viewer and simultaneously shift it towards the impalpable, which is less closely related to a perception of a uniquely decipherable and immediate concept or expression. The perception then moves onto the plane of the not wholly determined, that glint that is blurred vision and suffused sound, as when one is pervaded by the strange sensation of not knowing whether what we have seen or heard is real or imagined, personal or shared.

The exhibition is organized through the display of historical but unpublished works, such as the strip of photos taken from Photomatic d’Italia, 1973-1974, the creation of environments on the boundary line between private and public space, the projection of videos like I Cani lenti 1971, and is completed with the installation of an attractor beacon that dazzles the radius of the sky above Palazzo Caracciolo di Avellino.

In the second half of the 60s, Franco Vaccari developed the use of technology to an automatism that had never been achieved before, leaving the photographic medium free to operate without the filter of authorship and proposing viewers should compose their own works. In his personal room at the Venice Biennale in 1972 a passport photograph booth invited visitors to be photographed automatically and to leave the instant trace of their passage on the adjacent wall. Attaching your strip to the wall was like tweeting, publishing and linking your photos with the hope of receiving as many likes as possible, but at a time when Internet still did not exist. By making theoretical selfies 40 years in advance, Vaccari proposed the dissolution of the expressive restrictions associated with the presence of the artist behind the camera, permitted the subject of the portrait to establish a private relationship with the medium and anticipated a cultural phenomenon that is the full expression of an age like ours based on the public dissemination of one’s image in the constant sharing of private experience. The strips from Photomatic d’Italia, 1973-1974, true selfies in Naples, Salerno and Avellino of the time, with their looks, gestures, clothing and haircuts, constitute a vivid document of manners that leaves room for the creation of a deeply felt tie that stems from the emotion of the viewer and the enthusiasm of the subject portrayed.

The investigation of the Technological Unconscious in the Real Time Exhibition gives rise to reflection on the relationship between public and private space when Vaccari makes his irruption from the road into the exhibition space and simultaneously inverts the concept itself. The intention is to send a clear message: that of an art that becomes what it is because it is based on interaction with the Other and on the risk posed by that exchange. The exhibition space must be transformed into a place of sharing and meeting, a participation that does not leave the viewer with the function of a mere spectator but with that of a creator of meanings.

The participatory act is further manifested by the exhibition of a series of works to be deciphered with the visitor’s smartphone, which triggers mechanisms of significance through the juxtaposition of the incredibly contemporary with the reflection of history.

Vaccari traverses the Foundation, leaving an indelible trace of his passage through the total involvement of himself in an exhibition that can be seen as the personal collection of experience and its subsequent emanation. In an attempt to oppose the oblivion of selfies and intangible dimensions, the viewer is sneaked in with the sense of hearing, sight,experience, revealed and the interiorized that becomes sound, image, story by which one is to be, telepathically, penetrated.

Franco Vaccari was born in 1936 in Modena, where he lives and works. He participated, always with personal rooms, at the Venice Biennale in 1972 with Esposizione in tempo reale n. 4 (Real-Rime Display No. 4) in 1980 with Esposizione in tempo reale n. 19. Codemondo (Real-Time Display No. 19. Codemondo) and in 1993 with Esposizione in tempo reale n. 21. Bar code – Code bar (Real-Time Display No. 21 Bar code – Code bar). Among his most important recent exhibitions: a retrospective in 1984 at the Museum Moderner Kunst in Vienna, Minimalia at the PS1 in New York in 1999, the Biennale di Gwanju in 2010 and Strange Comfort at the Kunsthalle Basel.


(Text by Anna Cuomo)