Alma Mater – a multimedia total-artwork in Milan
Light installation: Enzo Catellani
Sound space design: Architettura Sonora
Exhibition design: Davide Petullà.
Production: Magà Global Arts - in collaboration with Comune di Milano, Fabbrica del Vapore, Cittadellarte - Fondazione Pistoletto, Architettura Sonora, Catellani&Smith.
Images:courtesy of Magà Global Arts
See captions for credits.
Above: Alma Mater, installation view, photo © Paolo Chinazi.Courtesy of Magà Global Arts.
To define Alma Mater, the creation by Israeli composer Yuval Avital, currently installed at the Fabbrica del Vapore, is not an easy task. The most appropriate definition for it, is probably ”multimedia total artwork”, since this piece of art adopts a mixture of different means of expression, music, visual arts, dance, theater, live performances, sounds and light installations.
Yuval Avital, an internationally acclaimed artist and composer, conceived a powerful sound composition, diffused by 140 speakers made in stone and terracotta, based on female voices from all over the world – reciting fairy tales, singing traditional tunes, and whispering prayers – mixed together with sounds of nature – mysterious vibrations, volcano rumbles, sounds from the sea abyss, water droplet ticks.
Above: Alma Mater, installation view, photo © R. Sanzone.Courtesy of Magà Global Arts.
Women’s know-how and nature are the cornerstones of Avital’s work. Ancestral grandmothers and Mother Earth, fecundity and nourishment, creative and destructive power, the visitor is invited to explore a sort of womb, where build-up a personal and intimate sensory experience.
Above: Alma Mater, installation view, photo © R. Paul Richard Cecchini.Courtesy of Magà Global Arts.
On a 1,200 square-meter floor area in the Fabbrica del Vapore, Alma Mater is a powerful piece of art, featuring an exceptional ensemble of creative contributions: the music by Avital, The Third Paradise – iconic work by Michelangelo Pistoletto, the performances by dancers Liliana Cosi and Oriella Dorella – legendary “étoiles” from La Scala’s Ballet Company, the skillful movements of Cantù’s lacemakers, the site-specific lighting installation by Enzo Catellani, and the soundscapes conceived by Architettura Sonora.
Alma Mater – installation views. Above photo © Paolo Chinazzi; below photo © R. Sanzone. Courtesy of Magà Global Arts.
The lighting installation by Enzo Catellani constitutes the ceiling of Alma Mater; refraction, lighting, and shadow are generated by 42 gold-foil-covered discs, slowly oscillating and illuminated by 1W micro-LEDs.
The Third Paradise by Michelangelo Pistoletto, positioned in the middle of the hall, is composed of three adjoining rings, evoking the link of past, present, and future. Previously exposed in many art venues, including the Louvre Museum in Paris, The United Nations Headquarters in New York, and the Kunsthaus Graz, this piece of art is, for this occasion, made of local farmhouse soil.
Above: Alma Mater, installation view, photo © R. Sanzone. Courtesy of Magà Global Arts.
Alma Mater is also a backdrop and a catalyst for a rich program of events – meetings, creative workshops, and live performances – running until 29 August, 2015.
Alma Mater-Yuval Avital and Michelangelo Pistoletto. Courtesy of Magà Global Arts.
ALMA MATER by YUVAL AVITAL
in dialogue with IL TERZO PARADISO by MICHELANGELO PISTOLETTO
Icon-sonic installation for a forest of 140 loudspeakers,
legendary étoiles from La Scala Theatre and lacemakers.
Fabbrica del Vapore
Milan – via Procaccini 4.
8 July – 29 August, 2015.