Re/decomposition? history is the product of an exercise in remembering and forgetting. The looped reel-to-reel of Christine Kozlov’s “Information: no theory” does the opposite, perpetually recording but never playing the ambient noise in the gallery, simply cueing it up for constant erasure beneath what is about to come

Re/decomposition? history is the product of an exercise in remembering and forgetting. The looped reel-to-reel of Christine Kozlov’s “Information: no theory” does the opposite, perpetually recording but never playing the ambient noise in the gallery, simply cueing it up for constant erasure beneath what is about to come

about

Our memory…nothing more precious…

Yet many times, too many times, we forget. We forget names, people, objects, places… even what is important and SHOULDN’T be forgot.

bibliography

“Il mulino del Po”, Riccardo Bacchelli.

“Il formaggio e i vermi”, Carl Ginzburg.

“La scienza del mangiar bene”, Piero Camporesi.

“The poetic museum”, Julian Spalding

” …dontstopdontstopdontstopdontstop”, Hans-Ulrich Obrist

“How to develop an exceptional memory”, Morris N. Young, Walter B.

                     Gibson

WHICH OBJECTS SUMS UP LIFE IN 2010?

Share your ideas!

These are some suggestions of the visitors of the British Museum. Among them, there is that one of a basket too…

…a BASKET?!…

That’s the common idea: the museum decides the objects, the opening hours, the ways… and the visitor comes, looks…and stop.
Ok, now, cut it out.
Is finally spreading the idea that the museum is actually an interactive place, the result of the active participation of its main users: people.
We’ve already talked here about the exhibition “Talk To me” at MoMA in New York, but it’s useful again as an example because next July it will show a wide range of objects from all over the world, suggested by designers, students, artists and scientists. As a support, a multimedia platform in which you can share findings, considerations and explorations as researched, investigated, found.
“A History of the World”,  instead, is a partnership between BBC and The British  Museum, with the collaboration of the schools, other museums and individuals, which focuses on what men have produced, from flint to super technological mobile phone.
The inspiration: the BBC radio 4 series “A history of the world in 100 objects”: 100 programmes for 100 objects from the British Museum’s collection.
The evolution: collaboration with other museums + schools + individuals
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=84pkMT1TAFE
A more “sophisticated” version, still based on the idea of creating a museum giving voice to the people (great designers, in this case), is a new Design Museum, a projects created by Enzo Mari in collaboration with the magazine “Abitare”.
Here,the description done on the website:
Following the idea of Enzo Mari, Abitare with each new issue  will  publish five works of design, which will be chosen by a series of  well  known personalities from the world of design. After the first  selection,  each juror, besides indicating his or her five products,  will confirm –  or not – the other objects, which were proposed by the previous jurors. The idea is to create a kind of new Design Museum.
At this link, the Rules of the game.
The main picture chosen for this post is the Lexikon 80, projected by  Marcello Nizzoli in 1948 for Olivetti.
The Lexikon 80 has been the first object chosen by Enzo Mari himself as well, in order to start off the collection.

That’s the common idea: the museum decides the objects, the opening hours, the ways… and the visitor comes, looks…and stop.

Ok, now, cut it out.

Is finally spreading the idea that the museum is actually an interactive place, the result of the active participation of its main users: people.

We’ve already talked here about the exhibition Talk To me at MoMA in New York, but it’s useful again as an example because next July it will show a wide range of objects from all over the world, suggested by designers, students, artists and scientists. As a support, a multimedia platform in which you can share findings, considerations and explorations as researched, investigated, found.

“A History of the World”, instead, is a partnership between BBC and The British Museum, with the collaboration of the schools, other museums and individuals, which focuses on what men have produced, from flint to super technological mobile phone.

The inspiration: the BBC radio 4 series “A history of the world in 100 objects”: 100 programmes for 100 objects from the British Museum’s collection.

The evolution: collaboration with other museums + schools + individuals

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=84pkMT1TAFE

A more “sophisticated” version, still based on the idea of creating a museum giving voice to the people (great designers, in this case), is a new Design Museum, a projects created by Enzo Mari in collaboration with the magazine “Abitare”.

Here,the description done on the website:

Following the idea of Enzo Mari, Abitare with each new issue will publish five works of design, which will be chosen by a series of well known personalities from the world of design. After the first selection, each juror, besides indicating his or her five products, will confirm – or not – the other objects, which were proposed by the previous jurors. The idea is to create a kind of new Design Museum.


At this link, the Rules of the game.

The main picture chosen for this post is the Lexikon 80, projected by Marcello Nizzoli in 1948 for Olivetti.

The Lexikon 80 has been the first object chosen by Enzo Mari himself as well, in order to start off the collection.

 “ The library is not only the place for your memory, where you preserve what you read, but the place for the universal memory, where every day, in the fatal moment, you will able to find  what other people have read before you”. Umberto Eco
Since 1998 the little Republic of San Marino can boast “Fondo Young”, one of the richest collections of books, articles and memorabilia about memory and the techniques to improve it ever existed. It belongs to the library of the University of San Marino, that has bought it in 1991 from the American collector Morris N. Young.
The numbers (really high):

- 197 books published before 1800 (among them, 11 incunabula);
- around 2000 monographs of the following period;
- 2000 articles;
- 500 pieces of graphic and memorabilia linked somehow to memory.
…
How do memory techniques work?
1. Let’s imagine a spatial structure (building, city, territory) divisible in different divisions/sectors.
2. Let’s consider these sectors (streets, squares, aisles, rooms, stairs) as places in which you could add pictures easy to memorize (well known objects/surprising things, not so easily forgettable).
3. Assign each picture the names or the concepts you want to memorize.
.   

“ The library is not only the place for your memory, where you preserve what you read, but the place for the universal memory, where every day, in the fatal moment, you will able to find  what other people have read before you”. Umberto Eco

Since 1998 the little Republic of San Marino can boast “Fondo Young”, one of the richest collections of books, articles and memorabilia about memory and the techniques to improve it ever existed. It belongs to the library of the University of San Marino, that has bought it in 1991 from the American collector Morris N. Young.

The numbers (really high):

- 197 books published before 1800 (among them, 11 incunabula);

- around 2000 monographs of the following period;

- 2000 articles;

- 500 pieces of graphic and memorabilia linked somehow to memory.

How do memory techniques work?

1. Let’s imagine a spatial structure (building, city, territory) divisible in different divisions/sectors.

2. Let’s consider these sectors (streets, squares, aisles, rooms, stairs) as places in which you could add pictures easy to memorize (well known objects/surprising things, not so easily forgettable).

3. Assign each picture the names or the concepts you want to memorize.

.   

 
One city, dozens of museums. One very famous? The Egyptian Museum. But it’s not the one we are interested in (do you remember? It’s a “big museum”)
So, the leitmotive are: -  memory ; 
                                      -  a small museum ;
                                      -  low-cost museum ; 
                                      - why not?! Even  sustainable !
 
In Turin, as I was saying, we can find some interesting examples.
 
Ex industrial area of Spina 3:
N!03 have set up the "preserving the past" project: jams with a Bluetooth device that send on mobile phone a clip with the story of the place.
Original-innovative-technologically advanced idea.

 
Porta Pila Museum.
Porta Palazzo is a market area in Turin, a district as a world, a melting pot of sounds, colors, people, cultures. The idea is that one of a museum that could preserve and show the memory of the market, hand down the past and offer a picture of the present.
The goals:
-          design the experience, rather than the place
-          hold down the costs
-          use resources of the market itself
-          set up an auto sufficient system
-          create a content through personal experiences.

Where?
At Porta Palazzo district, so that it is possible to set up a tight link among the museum and the places that it evokes and invite to visit.
The museum is therefore nothing else but a series of experiences, in order to live the market in an uncommon way. 
Objects got back from Balon or the market itself + multimedia materials (pictures, super8, sounds, projections…) + interactive materials = great job!
Some examples:
-          Treasure hunt (map + list of objects to be sought/ tasks to do. Field: the market)
-          Date at the market (typical figures of the market (fruiterer, shopkeeper…) “booked” via web to be the tour-guides and to tell their experiences)
-          A day as the “market man” (you don’t buy a ticket, but a coupon to be used to buy products sold at the market and set up strategies for your own business).
 
 
A come Ambiente Museum.
We were saying…the sustainability. Nowadays, the message is relevant. Why should we limit it to be closed in a building and stop at 7.30 pm?
The goals:
-         -  Continue to spread the content beyond the wall of the museum, even beyond working hours;
-          - Reach the passer-bys, even if they don’t come in.
The method:
a method that didn’t request a great additional waste of energy and that had held down costs, of course.
It has been thought about a tube, as the simplest vehicle of transmission of the message and as a tool to enhance its own strength.
A recall for a little of attention, a “wireless telephone”, to let us understand that to communicate we can avoid expensive and complex technological device.
 

-
In 1976, the Irish sculptor Brian O’Doherty defined museum as “white cubes”, aseptic white boxes, isolated by the rest of the world. He referred to the contemporary art, to be exact, and probably he missed a big part of museums with really different contents as well.
Museum like those ones, that inform, communicate, interact. There are very, very far from O’Doherty’s white box. For sure. 

One city, dozens of museums. One very famous? The Egyptian Museum. But it’s not the one we are interested in (do you remember? It’s a “big museum”)

So, the leitmotive are: -  memory ;

                                      -  a small museum ;

                                      -  low-cost museum ;

                                      - why not?! Even  sustainable !

 

In Turin, as I was saying, we can find some interesting examples.

 

Ex industrial area of Spina 3:

N!03 have set up the "preserving the past" project: jams with a Bluetooth device that send on mobile phone a clip with the story of the place.

Original-innovative-technologically advanced idea.

 

Porta Pila Museum.

Porta Palazzo is a market area in Turin, a district as a world, a melting pot of sounds, colors, people, cultures. The idea is that one of a museum that could preserve and show the memory of the market, hand down the past and offer a picture of the present.

The goals:

-          design the experience, rather than the place

-          hold down the costs

-          use resources of the market itself

-          set up an auto sufficient system

-          create a content through personal experiences.


Where?

At Porta Palazzo district, so that it is possible to set up a tight link among the museum and the places that it evokes and invite to visit.

The museum is therefore nothing else but a series of experiences, in order to live the market in an uncommon way.

Objects got back from Balon or the market itself + multimedia materials (pictures, super8, sounds, projections…) + interactive materials = great job!

Some examples:

-          Treasure hunt (map + list of objects to be sought/ tasks to do. Field: the market)

-          Date at the market (typical figures of the market (fruiterer, shopkeeper…) “booked” via web to be the tour-guides and to tell their experiences)

-          A day as the “market man” (you don’t buy a ticket, but a coupon to be used to buy products sold at the market and set up strategies for your own business).

 

 

A come Ambiente Museum.

We were saying…the sustainability. Nowadays, the message is relevant. Why should we limit it to be closed in a building and stop at 7.30 pm?

The goals:

-         -  Continue to spread the content beyond the wall of the museum, even beyond working hours;

-          - Reach the passer-bys, even if they don’t come in.

The method:

a method that didn’t request a great additional waste of energy and that had held down costs, of course.

It has been thought about a tube, as the simplest vehicle of transmission of the message and as a tool to enhance its own strength.

A recall for a little of attention, a “wireless telephone”, to let us understand that to communicate we can avoid expensive and complex technological device.

 

-

In 1976, the Irish sculptor Brian O’Doherty defined museum as “white cubes”, aseptic white boxes, isolated by the rest of the world. He referred to the contemporary art, to be exact, and probably he missed a big part of museums with really different contents as well.

Museum like those ones, that inform, communicate, interact. There are very, very far from O’Doherty’s white box. For sure. 

Last 26th September finished in Milan “Personnes”, Christian Boltanski’s exhibition, realized in collaboration with Grain Palais of Paris and Armory of New York.
It was written that the reopening of Hangar Bicocca, after renovations, has been extraordinary and it is definitely the new Milanese pole of contemporary art. It has built an international network of exhibitions and has started showing the monumental Boltanski’s installation, specifically rethought by the artist to be adapted to the Hangar, after the previous exhib at Graind Palais last winter.
Let’s imagine a straight way delimited by crush barriers where loudspeakers reproduce heartbeats. At the end of this corridor, in the big cube deep down in the Hangar, a very high pile of clothes moved  by a crane in an obsessed and casual way.
It takes some clothes, it leaves others.
Once, twice, ten, hundreds times…


The visitors of Hangar Bicocca could add their heartbeats too, recording them on a CD and becoming therefore part of a Boltanski’s ambitious project, Les Archives du coeurs. The artist aims to create a huge collection of heartbeats of all the humanity, that will be kept in a Japanese island.
Boltanski, however, seems to be lured by archives and stocktaking: Les abonnée du telephone, for instance, is a big bookshelf with phone books from all over the world, shown in 2005 at Pac of Milan. Try to imagine, now, to search in the phone book of your city and to find your name, but linked to an old address: a strong impact, no doubts.
Who were you some times ago?
……….

“Mentioning all men”: this is Boltanski’s will, implied in most of his works.
Utopia?
His attempt not to blow the memory of every human being’s life, to keep at least a trace of his passage is clear. And we can see it.

Last 26th September finished in Milan “Personnes”, Christian Boltanski’s exhibition, realized in collaboration with Grain Palais of Paris and Armory of New York.

It was written that the reopening of Hangar Bicocca, after renovations, has been extraordinary and it is definitely the new Milanese pole of contemporary art. It has built an international network of exhibitions and has started showing the monumental Boltanski’s installation, specifically rethought by the artist to be adapted to the Hangar, after the previous exhib at Graind Palais last winter.

Let’s imagine a straight way delimited by crush barriers where loudspeakers reproduce heartbeats. At the end of this corridor, in the big cube deep down in the Hangar, a very high pile of clothes moved  by a crane in an obsessed and casual way.

It takes some clothes, it leaves others.

Once, twice, ten, hundreds times…

The visitors of Hangar Bicocca could add their heartbeats too, recording them on a CD and becoming therefore part of a Boltanski’s ambitious project, Les Archives du coeurs. The artist aims to create a huge collection of heartbeats of all the humanity, that will be kept in a Japanese island.

Boltanski, however, seems to be lured by archives and stocktaking: Les abonnée du telephone, for instance, is a big bookshelf with phone books from all over the world, shown in 2005 at Pac of Milan. Try to imagine, now, to search in the phone book of your city and to find your name, but linked to an old address: a strong impact, no doubts.

Who were you some times ago?

……….

“Mentioning all men”: this is Boltanski’s will, implied in most of his works.

Utopia?

His attempt not to blow the memory of every human being’s life, to keep at least a trace of his passage is clear. And we can see it.

A digital 7’’ framework bought on eBay and a 4GB USB pen: two small, cheap, easy to use objects.
Well. What can we do now?
Easy, a museum!
MINI Museum of XXI Century Art (MMAXXI) was designed to preserve and show works of art of XXI th century. Every form of art: digital images, animation, pictures, videos, music, texts, but also paintings, installations, sculptures, performances, and so on. Works that, according to their authors, can be legitimately adapted to jpeg, mp3, mpg and avi, without losing their status of “work of art”.

The reason why of the Museum:
Until now there has been too much emphasis on the thought that a new work of art requires new media. “Bullshit”, is written in the “about” of the website of the museum. What arts in the XXI the century do share is not the digitalization, but that they can be transposed and live temporary in digital forms; they can be shown, therefore, through a digital framework or held on a pen drive.
A light and portable museum. That can travel.

Marcel Duchamp, La Boite en Valise, 1935 – 1941. Collection Moma, New York
-
A network of artists, called in succession to show their own work and to decide who’s going to be next “temporary owner”. The process will finish only when there won’t be anymore available memory on the pen drive. Hence, the collection won’t be the result of an individual selection, but of an unexpected, dynamic net of connections and casual meetings.
The inspiration:
Nanomuseum, founded in the middle ‘90s by Hans Ulrich Obrist. It is no more than a framework, bought by chance in a shop, become immediately the structure itself of the museum. It represented indeed that light architecture the museum aims and, at the same time, a sort of parody of nanotechnology.
In this case too, the idea was that the museum could host exhibitions and could be carried everywhere. No ties, the top of the freedom. Everywhere it goes, it keeps the traces of its results and stimulates every kind of conversation. Because what is important in not the object itself, but rather what it can start…
“The object is there and it is useful only to engender a discussion”- Gordon Douglas

“Pirate Paintings” are paintings shown in 2009 at Gloria Maria Gallery in Milan by the Greek artist Miltos Manetas, that includes a pen drive or an hard disk full of files that the visitors could freely download.

 Fluxus boxes, plastic or wooden boxes collecting playing cards, games and ideas; the art expression closest to the Fluxus of the 60’s.

Andy Warhol’s Timeboxes, not only paper boxes, but a huge archive (more than 600 boxes are held in Andy Warhol Museum of Pittsburgh!), where the artist has literally collected every kind of objects.

A digital 7’’ framework bought on eBay and a 4GB USB pen: two small, cheap, easy to use objects.

Well. What can we do now?

Easy, a museum!

MINI Museum of XXI Century Art (MMAXXI) was designed to preserve and show works of art of XXI th century. Every form of art: digital images, animation, pictures, videos, music, texts, but also paintings, installations, sculptures, performances, and so on. Works that, according to their authors, can be legitimately adapted to jpeg, mp3, mpg and avi, without losing their status of “work of art”.

The reason why of the Museum:

Until now there has been too much emphasis on the thought that a new work of art requires new media. “Bullshit”, is written in the “about” of the website of the museum. What arts in the XXI the century do share is not the digitalization, but that they can be transposed and live temporary in digital forms; they can be shown, therefore, through a digital framework or held on a pen drive.

A light and portable museum. That can travel.

Marcel Duchamp, La Boite en Valise, 1935 – 1941. Collection Moma, New York

-

A network of artists, called in succession to show their own work and to decide who’s going to be next “temporary owner”. The process will finish only when there won’t be anymore available memory on the pen drive. Hence, the collection won’t be the result of an individual selection, but of an unexpected, dynamic net of connections and casual meetings.

The inspiration:

Nanomuseum, founded in the middle ‘90s by Hans Ulrich Obrist. It is no more than a framework, bought by chance in a shop, become immediately the structure itself of the museum. It represented indeed that light architecture the museum aims and, at the same time, a sort of parody of nanotechnology.

In this case too, the idea was that the museum could host exhibitions and could be carried everywhere. No ties, the top of the freedom. Everywhere it goes, it keeps the traces of its results and stimulates every kind of conversation. Because what is important in not the object itself, but rather what it can start…

“The object is there and it is useful only to engender a discussion”- Gordon Douglas

“Pirate Paintings” are paintings shown in 2009 at Gloria Maria Gallery in Milan by the Greek artist Miltos Manetas, that includes a pen drive or an hard disk full of files that the visitors could freely download.

 Fluxus boxes, plastic or wooden boxes collecting playing cards, games and ideas; the art expression closest to the Fluxus of the 60’s.

Andy Warhol’s Timeboxes, not only paper boxes, but a huge archive (more than 600 boxes are held in Andy Warhol Museum of Pittsburgh!), where the artist has literally collected every kind of objects.

“Let’s not pretend that things will change if we keep doing the same things. A crisis can be a real blessing to any person, to any nation. For all crises bring progress. It’s in crisis that inventive is born, as well as discoveries, and big strategies. Who overcomes crisis, overcomes himself, without getting overcome. There’s no challenge without a crisis. Without challenges, life becomes a routine, a slow agony. There’s no merit without crisis. It’s in the crisis where we can show the very best in us. Let us work hard instead. Let us stop, once and for all, the menacing crisis that represents the tragedy of not being willing to overcome it.”- Albert Einstein
No dubts: there is crisis, there was crisis, and we feel it.
Big companies, big names, jobs failed. But our good Einstein has suggested that crisis brings new ideas, new strategies, new improvement as well.
It’s the right time for innovative approaches, suggestions, methods. New media. World can change and  it’s changing. It’s possible make beautiful the worst, innovative the old, low cost a rela experience.
We have already dealt with low cost museum: lower costs, the same emotions. Now, let’s try to understand better what we refer talking about Diffused Museum.
No more pictures, artifacts, written accounts, but a meeting with the protagonist of the stories themselves. A network of people: a potential resource of historical information that can offer, thanks to its experience, a personal key to the reading about the topic.
Hence you can discover personal stories, that are hardly collected in a book or in a traditional museum.
How does it work?
A Wi-Fi connection is enough. The website is the most important medium to provide this service: it could be a blog or a forum to arrange the dates, keep in touch before and after the visit, leave more accounts.
Easy, isn’t it?
During the workshop Tracce di Tabacco (Lecce 2009), a group of old people which used to work in the ex tobacco factory of the city as told his own story and his own working experience. An interactive exhibition has then showed some works of young designers who have reinterpreted people’s stories: when the visitor laid an object down to the map of the tobacco factory, a projection started in front of him: the account linked to the specific object.


NABA, instead, has experienced a workshop in Trieste for Museo Espresso.
Trieste is a big center for coffee production, with small and big enterprises that work in the diverse steps of the die. Most of these companies is unknown, but it represents an important historical, social and productive resource. Students were asked to let people, who have lived with coffee and for coffee, tell and share their own stories, and to arrange an interactive exhibition with RFID technology that could be added to the precious accounts.

“Let’s not pretend that things will change if we keep doing the same things. A crisis can be a real blessing to any person, to any nation. For all crises bring progress. It’s in crisis that inventive is born, as well as discoveries, and big strategies. Who overcomes crisis, overcomes himself, without getting overcome. There’s no challenge without a crisis. Without challenges, life becomes a routine, a slow agony. There’s no merit without crisis. It’s in the crisis where we can show the very best in us. Let us work hard instead. Let us stop, once and for all, the menacing crisis that represents the tragedy of not being willing to overcome it.”- Albert Einstein

No dubts: there is crisis, there was crisis, and we feel it.

Big companies, big names, jobs failed. But our good Einstein has suggested that crisis brings new ideas, new strategies, new improvement as well.

It’s the right time for innovative approaches, suggestions, methods. New media. World can change and  it’s changing. It’s possible make beautiful the worst, innovative the old, low cost a rela experience.

We have already dealt with low cost museum: lower costs, the same emotions. Now, let’s try to understand better what we refer talking about Diffused Museum.

No more pictures, artifacts, written accounts, but a meeting with the protagonist of the stories themselves. A network of people: a potential resource of historical information that can offer, thanks to its experience, a personal key to the reading about the topic.

Hence you can discover personal stories, that are hardly collected in a book or in a traditional museum.

How does it work?

A Wi-Fi connection is enough. The website is the most important medium to provide this service: it could be a blog or a forum to arrange the dates, keep in touch before and after the visit, leave more accounts.

Easy, isn’t it?

During the workshop Tracce di Tabacco (Lecce 2009), a group of old people which used to work in the ex tobacco factory of the city as told his own story and his own working experience. An interactive exhibition has then showed some works of young designers who have reinterpreted people’s stories: when the visitor laid an object down to the map of the tobacco factory, a projection started in front of him: the account linked to the specific object.

NABA, instead, has experienced a workshop in Trieste for Museo Espresso.

Trieste is a big center for coffee production, with small and big enterprises that work in the diverse steps of the die. Most of these companies is unknown, but it represents an important historical, social and productive resource. Students were asked to let people, who have lived with coffee and for coffee, tell and share their own stories, and to arrange an interactive exhibition with RFID technology that could be added to the precious accounts.


“The man who never threw anything away”, Ilya Kabakov
-
Gathering, storing and collecting objects is not only a work of art or an installation (just as Kabakov’s one).
But it could be the reality too.
Collyer brothers became famous because of their snobbish nature and compulsive hoarding: they were eventually found dead in their house in Harlem where they had lived for decades as hermits. The result: police found an house full of booby traps, rubbish and many other items amassed year by year. Over 130 tons of waste…little at all!

The Chinese artist Song Dong, indeed, has presented last year at MoMA in New York his last exhibition “Waste Not”. Here the description on MoMA website: 
 “Beijing-based artist Song Dong (b. 1966) explores notions of transience and impermanence with installations that combine aspects of performance, video, photography, and sculpture.Projects 90, his first solo U.S. museum show, presents his recent work Waste Not. A collaboration first conceived of with the artist’s mother, the installation consists of the complete contents of her home, amassed over fifty years during which the Chinese concept of wu jin qi yong, or “waste not,” was a prerequisite for survival. The assembled materials, ranging from pots and basins to blankets, oil flasks, and legless dolls, form a miniature cityscape that viewers can navigate around and through.”


Simple, daily, obvious objects.
Obvious not because rare or precious, but because gathered and jealousy collected during artist’s mother’s life (Zhao Xiang Yuan): objects that everyone could have used.
As those exposed at Museo Ettore Guatelli. From the pre-industrial and artisanal world that was disappearing, were saved hammers, pairs of pliers, shovels, scissors, barrels, shoes…
…and accounts related to them were collected in order to preserve old knowledge and living conditions, relied just on oral transmission until now.

“Ingegni Quotidiani” too, the exhibition organized by Tuscany Region for the Festival della Creatività of Florence in 2008, could be included in a social and economical context where the consumerism didn’t exist and the reuse was the custom. An exhibition dedicated to a very particular creativity: cases of cannons become flower boxes, brakes slings and watering cans oil lamps.
After all, in the VI th century B.C. Heraclitus said: “The fairest universe is but a heap of rubbish piled up at random”.

“The man who never threw anything away”, Ilya Kabakov

-

Gathering, storing and collecting objects is not only a work of art or an installation (just as Kabakov’s one).

But it could be the reality too.

Collyer brothers became famous because of their snobbish nature and compulsive hoarding: they were eventually found dead in their house in Harlem where they had lived for decades as hermits. The result: police found an house full of booby traps, rubbish and many other items amassed year by year. Over 130 tons of waste…little at all!

The Chinese artist Song Dong, indeed, has presented last year at MoMA in New York his last exhibition “Waste Not”. Here the description on MoMA website: 

 “Beijing-based artist Song Dong (b. 1966) explores notions of transience and impermanence with installations that combine aspects of performance, video, photography, and sculpture.Projects 90, his first solo U.S. museum show, presents his recent work Waste Not. A collaboration first conceived of with the artist’s mother, the installation consists of the complete contents of her home, amassed over fifty years during which the Chinese concept of wu jin qi yong, or “waste not,” was a prerequisite for survival. The assembled materials, ranging from pots and basins to blankets, oil flasks, and legless dolls, form a miniature cityscape that viewers can navigate around and through.”

Simple, daily, obvious objects.

Obvious not because rare or precious, but because gathered and jealousy collected during artist’s mother’s life (Zhao Xiang Yuan): objects that everyone could have used.

As those exposed at Museo Ettore Guatelli. From the pre-industrial and artisanal world that was disappearing, were saved hammers, pairs of pliers, shovels, scissors, barrels, shoes…

…and accounts related to them were collected in order to preserve old knowledge and living conditions, relied just on oral transmission until now.

“Ingegni Quotidiani” too, the exhibition organized by Tuscany Region for the Festival della Creatività of Florence in 2008, could be included in a social and economical context where the consumerism didn’t exist and the reuse was the custom. An exhibition dedicated to a very particular creativity: cases of cannons become flower boxes, brakes slings and watering cans oil lamps.

After all, in the VI th century B.C. Heraclitus said: “The fairest universe is but a heap of rubbish piled up at random”.

The collections could regain a meaning within the museums only if the vision process gets interesting again. Every artifact is able to become an object raising wonder. It depends just on the way you look at it. - Julian Spalding, “The poetic Museum”
Julian Spalding said it, and it’s easy to agree.
It’s necessary to focus on “how”, not “what”.
“How”, not “What”.
That’s interesting, what makes the difference.
Without considering, then, if it’s a small or a big museum.

Detail of a fan from the collection of Museo delle Arti Femminili, Vallo della Lucania
-
A big museum, as the British Museum, the Louvre or the Egyptian Museum of Turin, aims at the teaching approach, at the scientific precision and at the best completeness ever possible in its field.
A small museum, as the Museum of Watchmaker’s of Geneva, the Jurassik Technology Museum or Casa della Vita di Mario Paz in Rome, has a different goal.
The small museum focuses on a very specific subject, that is a class of objects, a territory, a classificatory or an aesthetic category. It points the finger at a theme, it creates an interest and reminds the visitor the complexity of the world.
The big museum strives asymptotically for being the only museum in the world, for having the antiquity taken as a whole. The small one, indeed, promotes the birth of other small museums at any scale.
 …
What are we trying to build up in Marghera?
A small museum.
A museum focused on HOW.

Composition on the wall, Museo Ettore Guatelli

The granary, Museo Ettore Guatelli

The collections could regain a meaning within the museums only if the vision process gets interesting again. Every artifact is able to become an object raising wonder. It depends just on the way you look at it. - Julian Spalding, “The poetic Museum”

Julian Spalding said it, and it’s easy to agree.

It’s necessary to focus on “how”, not “what”.

How”, not “What”.

That’s interesting, what makes the difference.

Without considering, then, if it’s a small or a big museum.

Detail of a fan from the collection of Museo delle Arti Femminili, Vallo della Lucania

-

A big museum, as the British Museum, the Louvre or the Egyptian Museum of Turin, aims at the teaching approach, at the scientific precision and at the best completeness ever possible in its field.

A small museum, as the Museum of Watchmaker’s of Geneva, the Jurassik Technology Museum or Casa della Vita di Mario Paz in Rome, has a different goal.

The small museum focuses on a very specific subject, that is a class of objects, a territory, a classificatory or an aesthetic category. It points the finger at a theme, it creates an interest and reminds the visitor the complexity of the world.

The big museum strives asymptotically for being the only museum in the world, for having the antiquity taken as a whole. The small one, indeed, promotes the birth of other small museums at any scale.

 

What are we trying to build up in Marghera?

A small museum.

A museum focused on HOW.

Composition on the wall, Museo Ettore Guatelli

The granary, Museo Ettore Guatelli

Maybe because it’s Wednesday (when there are generally the Italian parliamentary “question time”), but today we try to ask some questions.
1. Can a museum be hold in a suitcase?
According to Duchamp, to all appearances, it can. His project, “The box in a suitacase”, is a portable miniature monograph including sixty-nine reproductions of the artist’s own work.

Vasya Nagy has created, indeed, a curatorial project based on the idea that a “travelling” exhibition could fit into a suitcase and be virtually exposed everywhere. Here the link to the project “Art in a suitcase”.
Let’s try to figure out other settings…
Can become a museum: a tram, as the project made by the Italian-Albanese lab and the group Diogene…

…the cellar of a building, as the latest Paul Mc Carthy’s exhibition Pig Island in the basement of Palazzo Citterio in Milan…
…an ex working district, as that one in Lambrate, that has hosted during Fuorisalone 2010 the exhibition 13.798 grams of design, organized by Maria Cristina Didero and Susanna Legrenzi…
…the train depots, as Porta Genova ones, in which has been organized Paola Pivi’s exhibition My Religion is Kindness. Thank You, See You In The Future …


…or the city itself, as the little Vevey, in Switzerland, where JR started a new project, Unframed, using pictures taken by other photographs, more or less known, and exposing them on various buildings of the city…


Well, I would say that now we are pretty far from the traditional idea of museum: finally. Very appealing.
2.But…what’s a museum?
Wikipedia docet: “a museum is a building or an institution which houses and cares for a collection of artifacts and other objects of scientific, artistic, or historical importance and makes them available for public viewing through exhibits that may be permanent or temporary”.
And what if the reality, as we have already started seeing, was a little bit different?
The lab-museum Tecnologic@mente, for instance, can be defined as a “community museum” because has its roots in curiosity, intuition and will of a community of people linked by the passion for Olivetti and its history. Recently, has been opened a new showroom dedicated to Elea 9003, the first commercial computer in the world. Could you imagine a world without computers? Yet, only 60 years ago it was like that! Computer was used only for military purposes.
:o
Till, in the mid 50s, the genius of Adriano Olivetti developed a commercial computer to be used within the companies.
He, a brilliant mind, has found the way to anticipate the future, to look “forward”, to query paradigms of that time. A Steve Jobs or  a Tony Ryan of times gone by, in short.
:)


A short but due excursus.
Elea 9003 is a project with high technological content, developed through a process typical of craft, made by continuous check, tests and reiterations. Therefore, we could say that a real distinction between technology and craft doesn’t exist, as in the whole Italian industrial production process of the XX century. The reiteration, moreover, is an important tool to refine the production process, and it becomes a tool of quality guarantee for the product itself.
Arduino, created by Massimo Banzi for Intercatio Design Institutre of Ivrea, is made exactly with the same spirit of the previous projects, just as Elea.
In this showroom Olivetti’s adventure and the history of Elea were dismembered, divided, mixed and then reassembled on a wallpaper of 460 A4 sheets. In order to draw closer the visitors to the world of electronics, interactive experiences have been offered, like providing two systems to teach children the method of programming.

The museum, therefore, is not static anymore, but a continuous revision process that involves different people and that is never ended.
End of the short but due excursus.
Short, because we could have written pages and pages about Elea, Olivetti, the process of production…but the net is far more efficient in providing all the info.
Due, because it’s an extraordinary example of planning process, mounting of the showroom, conception of the museum.
3. How a contemporary museum should be, therefore?
3.1 First of all, a museum should transmit an evident value, easily perceived. To do this, for instance, could be more interesting reverse the paradigm and make evident the process that would take to the final result.
Let’s think about “Talk to me”, the exhibition that will be inaugurated at MoMA next 24th  July 2011, but that has already available online a website and a blog that prove each step of the exhibition: in this way, everyone can give his own opinion about the selection of the objects, becoming part of the process itself.
Cool, isn’t it?
3.2 A museum should be interesting, surprising, gripping. It should catch visitors’ attention and rouse them. It should force to look at the world from a different perspective.
3.3 Since we haven’t got at our disposal lots of economic resources (eh, the crisis!), a museum should respect criteria of economical sustainability. Ryanair e Easyjet invent low cost flights, iTunes let us downloading tracks with 1€, Ikea sells design objects with “new lower prices, new ideas”, (to quote its last ad)… so why don’t imagine a low cost museum as well?
A first example:
The Architects’ Organization of Trieste has invited NABA to mount the main exhibition for its event “Piazza dell’architettura”.
Clear wish: a beautiful, impeccable, perfect exhib.
The tie of the project: no budget. They could just recycle elements and materials from other exhibitions of Tosetto Allestimenti.
The result: mission accomplished, everyone incredibly happy and satisfied.
Link to the report of the local journalists on the website of the event.
The same context for Museo di Arti Femminili in Vallo della Lucania, where a private collector wanted to transform his own collection in a museum, but:
The tie: really few money;
The result: project realized via fax thanks to a series of instructions and reusing Ikea furniture transformed for the occasion;
The more satisfying result: the same ties allowed to reach an high level of sophistication and solution completely unexpected.


More photos.

Maybe because it’s Wednesday (when there are generally the Italian parliamentary “question time”), but today we try to ask some questions.

1. Can a museum be hold in a suitcase?

According to Duchamp, to all appearances, it can. His project, “The box in a suitacase”, is a portable miniature monograph including sixty-nine reproductions of the artist’s own work.

Vasya Nagy has created, indeed, a curatorial project based on the idea that a “travelling” exhibition could fit into a suitcase and be virtually exposed everywhere. Here the link to the project “Art in a suitcase”.

Let’s try to figure out other settings…

Can become a museum: a tram, as the project made by the Italian-Albanese lab and the group Diogene…

…the cellar of a building, as the latest Paul Mc Carthy’s exhibition Pig Island in the basement of Palazzo Citterio in Milan…

…an ex working district, as that one in Lambrate, that has hosted during Fuorisalone 2010 the exhibition 13.798 grams of design, organized by Maria Cristina Didero and Susanna Legrenzi…

…the train depots, as Porta Genova ones, in which has been organized Paola Pivi’s exhibition My Religion is Kindness. Thank You, See You In The Future

…or the city itself, as the little Vevey, in Switzerland, where JR started a new project, Unframed, using pictures taken by other photographs, more or less known, and exposing them on various buildings of the city…

Well, I would say that now we are pretty far from the traditional idea of museum: finally. Very appealing.

2.But…what’s a museum?

Wikipedia docet: “a museum is a building or an institution which houses and cares for a collection of artifacts and other objects of scientific, artistic, or historical importance and makes them available for public viewing through exhibits that may be permanent or temporary”.

And what if the reality, as we have already started seeing, was a little bit different?

The lab-museum Tecnologic@mente, for instance, can be defined as a “community museum” because has its roots in curiosity, intuition and will of a community of people linked by the passion for Olivetti and its history. Recently, has been opened a new showroom dedicated to Elea 9003, the first commercial computer in the world. Could you imagine a world without computers? Yet, only 60 years ago it was like that! Computer was used only for military purposes.

:o

Till, in the mid 50s, the genius of Adriano Olivetti developed a commercial computer to be used within the companies.

He, a brilliant mind, has found the way to anticipate the future, to look “forward”, to query paradigms of that time. A Steve Jobs or  a Tony Ryan of times gone by, in short.

:)

A short but due excursus.

Elea 9003 is a project with high technological content, developed through a process typical of craft, made by continuous check, tests and reiterations. Therefore, we could say that a real distinction between technology and craft doesn’t exist, as in the whole Italian industrial production process of the XX century. The reiteration, moreover, is an important tool to refine the production process, and it becomes a tool of quality guarantee for the product itself.

Arduino, created by Massimo Banzi for Intercatio Design Institutre of Ivrea, is made exactly with the same spirit of the previous projects, just as Elea.

In this showroom Olivetti’s adventure and the history of Elea were dismembered, divided, mixed and then reassembled on a wallpaper of 460 A4 sheets. In order to draw closer the visitors to the world of electronics, interactive experiences have been offered, like providing two systems to teach children the method of programming.

The museum, therefore, is not static anymore, but a continuous revision process that involves different people and that is never ended.

End of the short but due excursus.

Short, because we could have written pages and pages about Elea, Olivetti, the process of production…but the net is far more efficient in providing all the info.

Due, because it’s an extraordinary example of planning process, mounting of the showroom, conception of the museum.

3. How a contemporary museum should be, therefore?

3.1 First of all, a museum should transmit an evident value, easily perceived. To do this, for instance, could be more interesting reverse the paradigm and make evident the process that would take to the final result.

Let’s think about Talk to me, the exhibition that will be inaugurated at MoMA next 24th  July 2011, but that has already available online a website and a blog that prove each step of the exhibition: in this way, everyone can give his own opinion about the selection of the objects, becoming part of the process itself.

Cool, isn’t it?

3.2 A museum should be interesting, surprising, gripping. It should catch visitors’ attention and rouse them. It should force to look at the world from a different perspective.

3.3 Since we haven’t got at our disposal lots of economic resources (eh, the crisis!), a museum should respect criteria of economical sustainability. Ryanair e Easyjet invent low cost flights, iTunes let us downloading tracks with 1€, Ikea sells design objects with “new lower prices, new ideas”, (to quote its last ad)… so why don’t imagine a low cost museum as well?

A first example:

The Architects’ Organization of Trieste has invited NABA to mount the main exhibition for its event “Piazza dell’architettura”.

Clear wish: a beautiful, impeccable, perfect exhib.

The tie of the project: no budget. They could just recycle elements and materials from other exhibitions of Tosetto Allestimenti.

The result: mission accomplished, everyone incredibly happy and satisfied.

Link to the report of the local journalists on the website of the event.

The same context for Museo di Arti Femminili in Vallo della Lucania, where a private collector wanted to transform his own collection in a museum, but:

The tie: really few money;

The result: project realized via fax thanks to a series of instructions and reusing Ikea furniture transformed for the occasion;

The more satisfying result: the same ties allowed to reach an high level of sophistication and solution completely unexpected.

More photos.

Proust can remember his childhood at his aunt’s house in Combray thanks to the taste of the Madeleine cookies, Mr Arthens fervently mines years of gastronomic delights and discoveries in search of one single flavor…
The question, therefore, comes easily: our senses (smell, sight, taste…) can remind us passed experiences or feelings? It seems so.
Proust talks about “spontaneous memory” (the so-called epiphany), that is stirred by an accidental sensation and brings us to the past letting us “feel” THAT past, live it as it is happening right now.
If it does happen, why don’t we play with sounds, noises, smells…in order to bring back memories? Why don’t we use tools of playback really used by our grandparents, great grandparents, uncles, friends, acquaintances and so on?
Our grandfather Joe could have enjoyed to make his own movie with a camera 8 mm like this one

Hundreds of young people could have passed their evenings listening to the Pink Floyd thanks to the famous portable record player Penny

A group of friends, at Jack’s house, in that cold December 1975, could have organized an “horror night” watching “Profondo Rosso”, thanks to the latest video recorder Betamax by Sony, that had replaced the old, big, awkward and bulky reel to reel recorder.
But don’t forget the walkman too (brilliant answer to mass society? But that’s another story…fantastic the comparison with the Zen garden on Kyoto, indeed!)…

…the projector dial carousel…
…the musicassettes C60, C90, C120…

…the everlasting 45s…

………………….
And then? Then, times are changing (unfortunately or not).
True, well-known, inevitable.
And how you reinterpret the recording of sound changes as well.
Vinyl record players that turn and play music while suspended in midair, pens that can record sound as a line on paper and then play it back, practice and portable recorders like that one simply made by a corrugated cardboard sleeve, or “Linos”, modern, small and very, very cool.
Product designer Yuri Suzuki has created a collection of projects linked to the recording and the reproduction of sounds. “Soundchaser” gives you the chance to create new tracks made from laser-cut pieces of vinyl records; the “Finger Player is a stylus that fits on your finger, so you can listen to the sounds being produced; “Sound Jewellery” has sound grooves etched into a necklace, bracelet and brooch.
Till “Evo”, a personal recording device which can be worn as a pendant or pocket watch, particularly useful for travelers. It’s an intuitive interface that provides contextual information, captures still and moving pictures with audio and enables autonomy and self reliance.

Proust can remember his childhood at his aunt’s house in Combray thanks to the taste of the Madeleine cookies, Mr Arthens fervently mines years of gastronomic delights and discoveries in search of one single flavor…

The question, therefore, comes easily: our senses (smell, sight, taste…) can remind us passed experiences or feelings? It seems so.

Proust talks about “spontaneous memory” (the so-called epiphany), that is stirred by an accidental sensation and brings us to the past letting us “feel” THAT past, live it as it is happening right now.

If it does happen, why don’t we play with sounds, noises, smells…in order to bring back memories? Why don’t we use tools of playback really used by our grandparents, great grandparents, uncles, friends, acquaintances and so on?

Our grandfather Joe could have enjoyed to make his own movie with a camera 8 mm like this one

Hundreds of young people could have passed their evenings listening to the Pink Floyd thanks to the famous portable record player Penny

A group of friends, at Jack’s house, in that cold December 1975, could have organized an “horror night” watching “Profondo Rosso”, thanks to the latest video recorder Betamax by Sony, that had replaced the old, big, awkward and bulky reel to reel recorder.

But don’t forget the walkman too (brilliant answer to mass society? But that’s another story…fantastic the comparison with the Zen garden on Kyoto, indeed!)…

…the projector dial carousel…

…the musicassettes C60, C90, C120…

…the everlasting 45s…

………………….

And then? Then, times are changing (unfortunately or not).

True, well-known, inevitable.

And how you reinterpret the recording of sound changes as well.

Vinyl record players that turn and play music while suspended in midair, pens that can record sound as a line on paper and then play it back, practice and portable recorders like that one simply made by a corrugated cardboard sleeve, or “Linos”, modern, small and very, very cool.

Product designer Yuri Suzuki has created a collection of projects linked to the recording and the reproduction of sounds. “Soundchaser” gives you the chance to create new tracks made from laser-cut pieces of vinyl records; the “Finger Player is a stylus that fits on your finger, so you can listen to the sounds being produced; “Sound Jewellery” has sound grooves etched into a necklace, bracelet and brooch.

Till “Evo”, a personal recording device which can be worn as a pendant or pocket watch, particularly useful for travelers. It’s an intuitive interface that provides contextual information, captures still and moving pictures with audio and enables autonomy and self reliance.

Re/decomposition? history is the product of an exercise in remembering and forgetting. The looped reel-to-reel of Christine Kozlov’s “Information: no theory” does the opposite, perpetually recording but never playing the ambient noise in the gallery, simply cueing it up for constant erasure beneath what is about to come

Re/decomposition? history is the product of an exercise in remembering and forgetting. The looped reel-to-reel of Christine Kozlov’s “Information: no theory” does the opposite, perpetually recording but never playing the ambient noise in the gallery, simply cueing it up for constant erasure beneath what is about to come

about

Our memory…nothing more precious…

Yet many times, too many times, we forget. We forget names, people, objects, places… even what is important and SHOULDN’T be forgot.

bibliography

“Il mulino del Po”, Riccardo Bacchelli.

“Il formaggio e i vermi”, Carl Ginzburg.

“La scienza del mangiar bene”, Piero Camporesi.

“The poetic museum”, Julian Spalding

” …dontstopdontstopdontstopdontstop”, Hans-Ulrich Obrist

“How to develop an exceptional memory”, Morris N. Young, Walter B.

                     Gibson

WHICH OBJECTS SUMS UP LIFE IN 2010?

Share your ideas!

These are some suggestions of the visitors of the British Museum. Among them, there is that one of a basket too…

…a BASKET?!…

That’s the common idea: the museum decides the objects, the opening hours, the ways… and the visitor comes, looks…and stop.
Ok, now, cut it out.
Is finally spreading the idea that the museum is actually an interactive place, the result of the active participation of its main users: people.
We’ve already talked here about the exhibition “Talk To me” at MoMA in New York, but it’s useful again as an example because next July it will show a wide range of objects from all over the world, suggested by designers, students, artists and scientists. As a support, a multimedia platform in which you can share findings, considerations and explorations as researched, investigated, found.
“A History of the World”,  instead, is a partnership between BBC and The British  Museum, with the collaboration of the schools, other museums and individuals, which focuses on what men have produced, from flint to super technological mobile phone.
The inspiration: the BBC radio 4 series “A history of the world in 100 objects”: 100 programmes for 100 objects from the British Museum’s collection.
The evolution: collaboration with other museums + schools + individuals
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=84pkMT1TAFE
A more “sophisticated” version, still based on the idea of creating a museum giving voice to the people (great designers, in this case), is a new Design Museum, a projects created by Enzo Mari in collaboration with the magazine “Abitare”.
Here,the description done on the website:
Following the idea of Enzo Mari, Abitare with each new issue  will  publish five works of design, which will be chosen by a series of  well  known personalities from the world of design. After the first  selection,  each juror, besides indicating his or her five products,  will confirm –  or not – the other objects, which were proposed by the previous jurors. The idea is to create a kind of new Design Museum.
At this link, the Rules of the game.
The main picture chosen for this post is the Lexikon 80, projected by  Marcello Nizzoli in 1948 for Olivetti.
The Lexikon 80 has been the first object chosen by Enzo Mari himself as well, in order to start off the collection.

That’s the common idea: the museum decides the objects, the opening hours, the ways… and the visitor comes, looks…and stop.

Ok, now, cut it out.

Is finally spreading the idea that the museum is actually an interactive place, the result of the active participation of its main users: people.

We’ve already talked here about the exhibition Talk To me at MoMA in New York, but it’s useful again as an example because next July it will show a wide range of objects from all over the world, suggested by designers, students, artists and scientists. As a support, a multimedia platform in which you can share findings, considerations and explorations as researched, investigated, found.

“A History of the World”, instead, is a partnership between BBC and The British Museum, with the collaboration of the schools, other museums and individuals, which focuses on what men have produced, from flint to super technological mobile phone.

The inspiration: the BBC radio 4 series “A history of the world in 100 objects”: 100 programmes for 100 objects from the British Museum’s collection.

The evolution: collaboration with other museums + schools + individuals

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=84pkMT1TAFE

A more “sophisticated” version, still based on the idea of creating a museum giving voice to the people (great designers, in this case), is a new Design Museum, a projects created by Enzo Mari in collaboration with the magazine “Abitare”.

Here,the description done on the website:

Following the idea of Enzo Mari, Abitare with each new issue will publish five works of design, which will be chosen by a series of well known personalities from the world of design. After the first selection, each juror, besides indicating his or her five products, will confirm – or not – the other objects, which were proposed by the previous jurors. The idea is to create a kind of new Design Museum.


At this link, the Rules of the game.

The main picture chosen for this post is the Lexikon 80, projected by Marcello Nizzoli in 1948 for Olivetti.

The Lexikon 80 has been the first object chosen by Enzo Mari himself as well, in order to start off the collection.

 “ The library is not only the place for your memory, where you preserve what you read, but the place for the universal memory, where every day, in the fatal moment, you will able to find  what other people have read before you”. Umberto Eco
Since 1998 the little Republic of San Marino can boast “Fondo Young”, one of the richest collections of books, articles and memorabilia about memory and the techniques to improve it ever existed. It belongs to the library of the University of San Marino, that has bought it in 1991 from the American collector Morris N. Young.
The numbers (really high):

- 197 books published before 1800 (among them, 11 incunabula);
- around 2000 monographs of the following period;
- 2000 articles;
- 500 pieces of graphic and memorabilia linked somehow to memory.
…
How do memory techniques work?
1. Let’s imagine a spatial structure (building, city, territory) divisible in different divisions/sectors.
2. Let’s consider these sectors (streets, squares, aisles, rooms, stairs) as places in which you could add pictures easy to memorize (well known objects/surprising things, not so easily forgettable).
3. Assign each picture the names or the concepts you want to memorize.
.   

“ The library is not only the place for your memory, where you preserve what you read, but the place for the universal memory, where every day, in the fatal moment, you will able to find  what other people have read before you”. Umberto Eco

Since 1998 the little Republic of San Marino can boast “Fondo Young”, one of the richest collections of books, articles and memorabilia about memory and the techniques to improve it ever existed. It belongs to the library of the University of San Marino, that has bought it in 1991 from the American collector Morris N. Young.

The numbers (really high):

- 197 books published before 1800 (among them, 11 incunabula);

- around 2000 monographs of the following period;

- 2000 articles;

- 500 pieces of graphic and memorabilia linked somehow to memory.

How do memory techniques work?

1. Let’s imagine a spatial structure (building, city, territory) divisible in different divisions/sectors.

2. Let’s consider these sectors (streets, squares, aisles, rooms, stairs) as places in which you could add pictures easy to memorize (well known objects/surprising things, not so easily forgettable).

3. Assign each picture the names or the concepts you want to memorize.

.   

 
One city, dozens of museums. One very famous? The Egyptian Museum. But it’s not the one we are interested in (do you remember? It’s a “big museum”)
So, the leitmotive are: -  memory ; 
                                      -  a small museum ;
                                      -  low-cost museum ; 
                                      - why not?! Even  sustainable !
 
In Turin, as I was saying, we can find some interesting examples.
 
Ex industrial area of Spina 3:
N!03 have set up the "preserving the past" project: jams with a Bluetooth device that send on mobile phone a clip with the story of the place.
Original-innovative-technologically advanced idea.

 
Porta Pila Museum.
Porta Palazzo is a market area in Turin, a district as a world, a melting pot of sounds, colors, people, cultures. The idea is that one of a museum that could preserve and show the memory of the market, hand down the past and offer a picture of the present.
The goals:
-          design the experience, rather than the place
-          hold down the costs
-          use resources of the market itself
-          set up an auto sufficient system
-          create a content through personal experiences.

Where?
At Porta Palazzo district, so that it is possible to set up a tight link among the museum and the places that it evokes and invite to visit.
The museum is therefore nothing else but a series of experiences, in order to live the market in an uncommon way. 
Objects got back from Balon or the market itself + multimedia materials (pictures, super8, sounds, projections…) + interactive materials = great job!
Some examples:
-          Treasure hunt (map + list of objects to be sought/ tasks to do. Field: the market)
-          Date at the market (typical figures of the market (fruiterer, shopkeeper…) “booked” via web to be the tour-guides and to tell their experiences)
-          A day as the “market man” (you don’t buy a ticket, but a coupon to be used to buy products sold at the market and set up strategies for your own business).
 
 
A come Ambiente Museum.
We were saying…the sustainability. Nowadays, the message is relevant. Why should we limit it to be closed in a building and stop at 7.30 pm?
The goals:
-         -  Continue to spread the content beyond the wall of the museum, even beyond working hours;
-          - Reach the passer-bys, even if they don’t come in.
The method:
a method that didn’t request a great additional waste of energy and that had held down costs, of course.
It has been thought about a tube, as the simplest vehicle of transmission of the message and as a tool to enhance its own strength.
A recall for a little of attention, a “wireless telephone”, to let us understand that to communicate we can avoid expensive and complex technological device.
 

-
In 1976, the Irish sculptor Brian O’Doherty defined museum as “white cubes”, aseptic white boxes, isolated by the rest of the world. He referred to the contemporary art, to be exact, and probably he missed a big part of museums with really different contents as well.
Museum like those ones, that inform, communicate, interact. There are very, very far from O’Doherty’s white box. For sure. 

One city, dozens of museums. One very famous? The Egyptian Museum. But it’s not the one we are interested in (do you remember? It’s a “big museum”)

So, the leitmotive are: -  memory ;

                                      -  a small museum ;

                                      -  low-cost museum ;

                                      - why not?! Even  sustainable !

 

In Turin, as I was saying, we can find some interesting examples.

 

Ex industrial area of Spina 3:

N!03 have set up the "preserving the past" project: jams with a Bluetooth device that send on mobile phone a clip with the story of the place.

Original-innovative-technologically advanced idea.

 

Porta Pila Museum.

Porta Palazzo is a market area in Turin, a district as a world, a melting pot of sounds, colors, people, cultures. The idea is that one of a museum that could preserve and show the memory of the market, hand down the past and offer a picture of the present.

The goals:

-          design the experience, rather than the place

-          hold down the costs

-          use resources of the market itself

-          set up an auto sufficient system

-          create a content through personal experiences.


Where?

At Porta Palazzo district, so that it is possible to set up a tight link among the museum and the places that it evokes and invite to visit.

The museum is therefore nothing else but a series of experiences, in order to live the market in an uncommon way.

Objects got back from Balon or the market itself + multimedia materials (pictures, super8, sounds, projections…) + interactive materials = great job!

Some examples:

-          Treasure hunt (map + list of objects to be sought/ tasks to do. Field: the market)

-          Date at the market (typical figures of the market (fruiterer, shopkeeper…) “booked” via web to be the tour-guides and to tell their experiences)

-          A day as the “market man” (you don’t buy a ticket, but a coupon to be used to buy products sold at the market and set up strategies for your own business).

 

 

A come Ambiente Museum.

We were saying…the sustainability. Nowadays, the message is relevant. Why should we limit it to be closed in a building and stop at 7.30 pm?

The goals:

-         -  Continue to spread the content beyond the wall of the museum, even beyond working hours;

-          - Reach the passer-bys, even if they don’t come in.

The method:

a method that didn’t request a great additional waste of energy and that had held down costs, of course.

It has been thought about a tube, as the simplest vehicle of transmission of the message and as a tool to enhance its own strength.

A recall for a little of attention, a “wireless telephone”, to let us understand that to communicate we can avoid expensive and complex technological device.

 

-

In 1976, the Irish sculptor Brian O’Doherty defined museum as “white cubes”, aseptic white boxes, isolated by the rest of the world. He referred to the contemporary art, to be exact, and probably he missed a big part of museums with really different contents as well.

Museum like those ones, that inform, communicate, interact. There are very, very far from O’Doherty’s white box. For sure. 

Last 26th September finished in Milan “Personnes”, Christian Boltanski’s exhibition, realized in collaboration with Grain Palais of Paris and Armory of New York.
It was written that the reopening of Hangar Bicocca, after renovations, has been extraordinary and it is definitely the new Milanese pole of contemporary art. It has built an international network of exhibitions and has started showing the monumental Boltanski’s installation, specifically rethought by the artist to be adapted to the Hangar, after the previous exhib at Graind Palais last winter.
Let’s imagine a straight way delimited by crush barriers where loudspeakers reproduce heartbeats. At the end of this corridor, in the big cube deep down in the Hangar, a very high pile of clothes moved  by a crane in an obsessed and casual way.
It takes some clothes, it leaves others.
Once, twice, ten, hundreds times…


The visitors of Hangar Bicocca could add their heartbeats too, recording them on a CD and becoming therefore part of a Boltanski’s ambitious project, Les Archives du coeurs. The artist aims to create a huge collection of heartbeats of all the humanity, that will be kept in a Japanese island.
Boltanski, however, seems to be lured by archives and stocktaking: Les abonnée du telephone, for instance, is a big bookshelf with phone books from all over the world, shown in 2005 at Pac of Milan. Try to imagine, now, to search in the phone book of your city and to find your name, but linked to an old address: a strong impact, no doubts.
Who were you some times ago?
……….

“Mentioning all men”: this is Boltanski’s will, implied in most of his works.
Utopia?
His attempt not to blow the memory of every human being’s life, to keep at least a trace of his passage is clear. And we can see it.

Last 26th September finished in Milan “Personnes”, Christian Boltanski’s exhibition, realized in collaboration with Grain Palais of Paris and Armory of New York.

It was written that the reopening of Hangar Bicocca, after renovations, has been extraordinary and it is definitely the new Milanese pole of contemporary art. It has built an international network of exhibitions and has started showing the monumental Boltanski’s installation, specifically rethought by the artist to be adapted to the Hangar, after the previous exhib at Graind Palais last winter.

Let’s imagine a straight way delimited by crush barriers where loudspeakers reproduce heartbeats. At the end of this corridor, in the big cube deep down in the Hangar, a very high pile of clothes moved  by a crane in an obsessed and casual way.

It takes some clothes, it leaves others.

Once, twice, ten, hundreds times…

The visitors of Hangar Bicocca could add their heartbeats too, recording them on a CD and becoming therefore part of a Boltanski’s ambitious project, Les Archives du coeurs. The artist aims to create a huge collection of heartbeats of all the humanity, that will be kept in a Japanese island.

Boltanski, however, seems to be lured by archives and stocktaking: Les abonnée du telephone, for instance, is a big bookshelf with phone books from all over the world, shown in 2005 at Pac of Milan. Try to imagine, now, to search in the phone book of your city and to find your name, but linked to an old address: a strong impact, no doubts.

Who were you some times ago?

……….

“Mentioning all men”: this is Boltanski’s will, implied in most of his works.

Utopia?

His attempt not to blow the memory of every human being’s life, to keep at least a trace of his passage is clear. And we can see it.

A digital 7’’ framework bought on eBay and a 4GB USB pen: two small, cheap, easy to use objects.
Well. What can we do now?
Easy, a museum!
MINI Museum of XXI Century Art (MMAXXI) was designed to preserve and show works of art of XXI th century. Every form of art: digital images, animation, pictures, videos, music, texts, but also paintings, installations, sculptures, performances, and so on. Works that, according to their authors, can be legitimately adapted to jpeg, mp3, mpg and avi, without losing their status of “work of art”.

The reason why of the Museum:
Until now there has been too much emphasis on the thought that a new work of art requires new media. “Bullshit”, is written in the “about” of the website of the museum. What arts in the XXI the century do share is not the digitalization, but that they can be transposed and live temporary in digital forms; they can be shown, therefore, through a digital framework or held on a pen drive.
A light and portable museum. That can travel.

Marcel Duchamp, La Boite en Valise, 1935 – 1941. Collection Moma, New York
-
A network of artists, called in succession to show their own work and to decide who’s going to be next “temporary owner”. The process will finish only when there won’t be anymore available memory on the pen drive. Hence, the collection won’t be the result of an individual selection, but of an unexpected, dynamic net of connections and casual meetings.
The inspiration:
Nanomuseum, founded in the middle ‘90s by Hans Ulrich Obrist. It is no more than a framework, bought by chance in a shop, become immediately the structure itself of the museum. It represented indeed that light architecture the museum aims and, at the same time, a sort of parody of nanotechnology.
In this case too, the idea was that the museum could host exhibitions and could be carried everywhere. No ties, the top of the freedom. Everywhere it goes, it keeps the traces of its results and stimulates every kind of conversation. Because what is important in not the object itself, but rather what it can start…
“The object is there and it is useful only to engender a discussion”- Gordon Douglas

“Pirate Paintings” are paintings shown in 2009 at Gloria Maria Gallery in Milan by the Greek artist Miltos Manetas, that includes a pen drive or an hard disk full of files that the visitors could freely download.

 Fluxus boxes, plastic or wooden boxes collecting playing cards, games and ideas; the art expression closest to the Fluxus of the 60’s.

Andy Warhol’s Timeboxes, not only paper boxes, but a huge archive (more than 600 boxes are held in Andy Warhol Museum of Pittsburgh!), where the artist has literally collected every kind of objects.

A digital 7’’ framework bought on eBay and a 4GB USB pen: two small, cheap, easy to use objects.

Well. What can we do now?

Easy, a museum!

MINI Museum of XXI Century Art (MMAXXI) was designed to preserve and show works of art of XXI th century. Every form of art: digital images, animation, pictures, videos, music, texts, but also paintings, installations, sculptures, performances, and so on. Works that, according to their authors, can be legitimately adapted to jpeg, mp3, mpg and avi, without losing their status of “work of art”.

The reason why of the Museum:

Until now there has been too much emphasis on the thought that a new work of art requires new media. “Bullshit”, is written in the “about” of the website of the museum. What arts in the XXI the century do share is not the digitalization, but that they can be transposed and live temporary in digital forms; they can be shown, therefore, through a digital framework or held on a pen drive.

A light and portable museum. That can travel.

Marcel Duchamp, La Boite en Valise, 1935 – 1941. Collection Moma, New York

-

A network of artists, called in succession to show their own work and to decide who’s going to be next “temporary owner”. The process will finish only when there won’t be anymore available memory on the pen drive. Hence, the collection won’t be the result of an individual selection, but of an unexpected, dynamic net of connections and casual meetings.

The inspiration:

Nanomuseum, founded in the middle ‘90s by Hans Ulrich Obrist. It is no more than a framework, bought by chance in a shop, become immediately the structure itself of the museum. It represented indeed that light architecture the museum aims and, at the same time, a sort of parody of nanotechnology.

In this case too, the idea was that the museum could host exhibitions and could be carried everywhere. No ties, the top of the freedom. Everywhere it goes, it keeps the traces of its results and stimulates every kind of conversation. Because what is important in not the object itself, but rather what it can start…

“The object is there and it is useful only to engender a discussion”- Gordon Douglas

“Pirate Paintings” are paintings shown in 2009 at Gloria Maria Gallery in Milan by the Greek artist Miltos Manetas, that includes a pen drive or an hard disk full of files that the visitors could freely download.

 Fluxus boxes, plastic or wooden boxes collecting playing cards, games and ideas; the art expression closest to the Fluxus of the 60’s.

Andy Warhol’s Timeboxes, not only paper boxes, but a huge archive (more than 600 boxes are held in Andy Warhol Museum of Pittsburgh!), where the artist has literally collected every kind of objects.

“Let’s not pretend that things will change if we keep doing the same things. A crisis can be a real blessing to any person, to any nation. For all crises bring progress. It’s in crisis that inventive is born, as well as discoveries, and big strategies. Who overcomes crisis, overcomes himself, without getting overcome. There’s no challenge without a crisis. Without challenges, life becomes a routine, a slow agony. There’s no merit without crisis. It’s in the crisis where we can show the very best in us. Let us work hard instead. Let us stop, once and for all, the menacing crisis that represents the tragedy of not being willing to overcome it.”- Albert Einstein
No dubts: there is crisis, there was crisis, and we feel it.
Big companies, big names, jobs failed. But our good Einstein has suggested that crisis brings new ideas, new strategies, new improvement as well.
It’s the right time for innovative approaches, suggestions, methods. New media. World can change and  it’s changing. It’s possible make beautiful the worst, innovative the old, low cost a rela experience.
We have already dealt with low cost museum: lower costs, the same emotions. Now, let’s try to understand better what we refer talking about Diffused Museum.
No more pictures, artifacts, written accounts, but a meeting with the protagonist of the stories themselves. A network of people: a potential resource of historical information that can offer, thanks to its experience, a personal key to the reading about the topic.
Hence you can discover personal stories, that are hardly collected in a book or in a traditional museum.
How does it work?
A Wi-Fi connection is enough. The website is the most important medium to provide this service: it could be a blog or a forum to arrange the dates, keep in touch before and after the visit, leave more accounts.
Easy, isn’t it?
During the workshop Tracce di Tabacco (Lecce 2009), a group of old people which used to work in the ex tobacco factory of the city as told his own story and his own working experience. An interactive exhibition has then showed some works of young designers who have reinterpreted people’s stories: when the visitor laid an object down to the map of the tobacco factory, a projection started in front of him: the account linked to the specific object.


NABA, instead, has experienced a workshop in Trieste for Museo Espresso.
Trieste is a big center for coffee production, with small and big enterprises that work in the diverse steps of the die. Most of these companies is unknown, but it represents an important historical, social and productive resource. Students were asked to let people, who have lived with coffee and for coffee, tell and share their own stories, and to arrange an interactive exhibition with RFID technology that could be added to the precious accounts.

“Let’s not pretend that things will change if we keep doing the same things. A crisis can be a real blessing to any person, to any nation. For all crises bring progress. It’s in crisis that inventive is born, as well as discoveries, and big strategies. Who overcomes crisis, overcomes himself, without getting overcome. There’s no challenge without a crisis. Without challenges, life becomes a routine, a slow agony. There’s no merit without crisis. It’s in the crisis where we can show the very best in us. Let us work hard instead. Let us stop, once and for all, the menacing crisis that represents the tragedy of not being willing to overcome it.”- Albert Einstein

No dubts: there is crisis, there was crisis, and we feel it.

Big companies, big names, jobs failed. But our good Einstein has suggested that crisis brings new ideas, new strategies, new improvement as well.

It’s the right time for innovative approaches, suggestions, methods. New media. World can change and  it’s changing. It’s possible make beautiful the worst, innovative the old, low cost a rela experience.

We have already dealt with low cost museum: lower costs, the same emotions. Now, let’s try to understand better what we refer talking about Diffused Museum.

No more pictures, artifacts, written accounts, but a meeting with the protagonist of the stories themselves. A network of people: a potential resource of historical information that can offer, thanks to its experience, a personal key to the reading about the topic.

Hence you can discover personal stories, that are hardly collected in a book or in a traditional museum.

How does it work?

A Wi-Fi connection is enough. The website is the most important medium to provide this service: it could be a blog or a forum to arrange the dates, keep in touch before and after the visit, leave more accounts.

Easy, isn’t it?

During the workshop Tracce di Tabacco (Lecce 2009), a group of old people which used to work in the ex tobacco factory of the city as told his own story and his own working experience. An interactive exhibition has then showed some works of young designers who have reinterpreted people’s stories: when the visitor laid an object down to the map of the tobacco factory, a projection started in front of him: the account linked to the specific object.

NABA, instead, has experienced a workshop in Trieste for Museo Espresso.

Trieste is a big center for coffee production, with small and big enterprises that work in the diverse steps of the die. Most of these companies is unknown, but it represents an important historical, social and productive resource. Students were asked to let people, who have lived with coffee and for coffee, tell and share their own stories, and to arrange an interactive exhibition with RFID technology that could be added to the precious accounts.


“The man who never threw anything away”, Ilya Kabakov
-
Gathering, storing and collecting objects is not only a work of art or an installation (just as Kabakov’s one).
But it could be the reality too.
Collyer brothers became famous because of their snobbish nature and compulsive hoarding: they were eventually found dead in their house in Harlem where they had lived for decades as hermits. The result: police found an house full of booby traps, rubbish and many other items amassed year by year. Over 130 tons of waste…little at all!

The Chinese artist Song Dong, indeed, has presented last year at MoMA in New York his last exhibition “Waste Not”. Here the description on MoMA website: 
 “Beijing-based artist Song Dong (b. 1966) explores notions of transience and impermanence with installations that combine aspects of performance, video, photography, and sculpture.Projects 90, his first solo U.S. museum show, presents his recent work Waste Not. A collaboration first conceived of with the artist’s mother, the installation consists of the complete contents of her home, amassed over fifty years during which the Chinese concept of wu jin qi yong, or “waste not,” was a prerequisite for survival. The assembled materials, ranging from pots and basins to blankets, oil flasks, and legless dolls, form a miniature cityscape that viewers can navigate around and through.”


Simple, daily, obvious objects.
Obvious not because rare or precious, but because gathered and jealousy collected during artist’s mother’s life (Zhao Xiang Yuan): objects that everyone could have used.
As those exposed at Museo Ettore Guatelli. From the pre-industrial and artisanal world that was disappearing, were saved hammers, pairs of pliers, shovels, scissors, barrels, shoes…
…and accounts related to them were collected in order to preserve old knowledge and living conditions, relied just on oral transmission until now.

“Ingegni Quotidiani” too, the exhibition organized by Tuscany Region for the Festival della Creatività of Florence in 2008, could be included in a social and economical context where the consumerism didn’t exist and the reuse was the custom. An exhibition dedicated to a very particular creativity: cases of cannons become flower boxes, brakes slings and watering cans oil lamps.
After all, in the VI th century B.C. Heraclitus said: “The fairest universe is but a heap of rubbish piled up at random”.

“The man who never threw anything away”, Ilya Kabakov

-

Gathering, storing and collecting objects is not only a work of art or an installation (just as Kabakov’s one).

But it could be the reality too.

Collyer brothers became famous because of their snobbish nature and compulsive hoarding: they were eventually found dead in their house in Harlem where they had lived for decades as hermits. The result: police found an house full of booby traps, rubbish and many other items amassed year by year. Over 130 tons of waste…little at all!

The Chinese artist Song Dong, indeed, has presented last year at MoMA in New York his last exhibition “Waste Not”. Here the description on MoMA website: 

 “Beijing-based artist Song Dong (b. 1966) explores notions of transience and impermanence with installations that combine aspects of performance, video, photography, and sculpture.Projects 90, his first solo U.S. museum show, presents his recent work Waste Not. A collaboration first conceived of with the artist’s mother, the installation consists of the complete contents of her home, amassed over fifty years during which the Chinese concept of wu jin qi yong, or “waste not,” was a prerequisite for survival. The assembled materials, ranging from pots and basins to blankets, oil flasks, and legless dolls, form a miniature cityscape that viewers can navigate around and through.”

Simple, daily, obvious objects.

Obvious not because rare or precious, but because gathered and jealousy collected during artist’s mother’s life (Zhao Xiang Yuan): objects that everyone could have used.

As those exposed at Museo Ettore Guatelli. From the pre-industrial and artisanal world that was disappearing, were saved hammers, pairs of pliers, shovels, scissors, barrels, shoes…

…and accounts related to them were collected in order to preserve old knowledge and living conditions, relied just on oral transmission until now.

“Ingegni Quotidiani” too, the exhibition organized by Tuscany Region for the Festival della Creatività of Florence in 2008, could be included in a social and economical context where the consumerism didn’t exist and the reuse was the custom. An exhibition dedicated to a very particular creativity: cases of cannons become flower boxes, brakes slings and watering cans oil lamps.

After all, in the VI th century B.C. Heraclitus said: “The fairest universe is but a heap of rubbish piled up at random”.

The collections could regain a meaning within the museums only if the vision process gets interesting again. Every artifact is able to become an object raising wonder. It depends just on the way you look at it. - Julian Spalding, “The poetic Museum”
Julian Spalding said it, and it’s easy to agree.
It’s necessary to focus on “how”, not “what”.
“How”, not “What”.
That’s interesting, what makes the difference.
Without considering, then, if it’s a small or a big museum.

Detail of a fan from the collection of Museo delle Arti Femminili, Vallo della Lucania
-
A big museum, as the British Museum, the Louvre or the Egyptian Museum of Turin, aims at the teaching approach, at the scientific precision and at the best completeness ever possible in its field.
A small museum, as the Museum of Watchmaker’s of Geneva, the Jurassik Technology Museum or Casa della Vita di Mario Paz in Rome, has a different goal.
The small museum focuses on a very specific subject, that is a class of objects, a territory, a classificatory or an aesthetic category. It points the finger at a theme, it creates an interest and reminds the visitor the complexity of the world.
The big museum strives asymptotically for being the only museum in the world, for having the antiquity taken as a whole. The small one, indeed, promotes the birth of other small museums at any scale.
 …
What are we trying to build up in Marghera?
A small museum.
A museum focused on HOW.

Composition on the wall, Museo Ettore Guatelli

The granary, Museo Ettore Guatelli

The collections could regain a meaning within the museums only if the vision process gets interesting again. Every artifact is able to become an object raising wonder. It depends just on the way you look at it. - Julian Spalding, “The poetic Museum”

Julian Spalding said it, and it’s easy to agree.

It’s necessary to focus on “how”, not “what”.

How”, not “What”.

That’s interesting, what makes the difference.

Without considering, then, if it’s a small or a big museum.

Detail of a fan from the collection of Museo delle Arti Femminili, Vallo della Lucania

-

A big museum, as the British Museum, the Louvre or the Egyptian Museum of Turin, aims at the teaching approach, at the scientific precision and at the best completeness ever possible in its field.

A small museum, as the Museum of Watchmaker’s of Geneva, the Jurassik Technology Museum or Casa della Vita di Mario Paz in Rome, has a different goal.

The small museum focuses on a very specific subject, that is a class of objects, a territory, a classificatory or an aesthetic category. It points the finger at a theme, it creates an interest and reminds the visitor the complexity of the world.

The big museum strives asymptotically for being the only museum in the world, for having the antiquity taken as a whole. The small one, indeed, promotes the birth of other small museums at any scale.

 

What are we trying to build up in Marghera?

A small museum.

A museum focused on HOW.

Composition on the wall, Museo Ettore Guatelli

The granary, Museo Ettore Guatelli

Maybe because it’s Wednesday (when there are generally the Italian parliamentary “question time”), but today we try to ask some questions.
1. Can a museum be hold in a suitcase?
According to Duchamp, to all appearances, it can. His project, “The box in a suitacase”, is a portable miniature monograph including sixty-nine reproductions of the artist’s own work.

Vasya Nagy has created, indeed, a curatorial project based on the idea that a “travelling” exhibition could fit into a suitcase and be virtually exposed everywhere. Here the link to the project “Art in a suitcase”.
Let’s try to figure out other settings…
Can become a museum: a tram, as the project made by the Italian-Albanese lab and the group Diogene…

…the cellar of a building, as the latest Paul Mc Carthy’s exhibition Pig Island in the basement of Palazzo Citterio in Milan…
…an ex working district, as that one in Lambrate, that has hosted during Fuorisalone 2010 the exhibition 13.798 grams of design, organized by Maria Cristina Didero and Susanna Legrenzi…
…the train depots, as Porta Genova ones, in which has been organized Paola Pivi’s exhibition My Religion is Kindness. Thank You, See You In The Future …


…or the city itself, as the little Vevey, in Switzerland, where JR started a new project, Unframed, using pictures taken by other photographs, more or less known, and exposing them on various buildings of the city…


Well, I would say that now we are pretty far from the traditional idea of museum: finally. Very appealing.
2.But…what’s a museum?
Wikipedia docet: “a museum is a building or an institution which houses and cares for a collection of artifacts and other objects of scientific, artistic, or historical importance and makes them available for public viewing through exhibits that may be permanent or temporary”.
And what if the reality, as we have already started seeing, was a little bit different?
The lab-museum Tecnologic@mente, for instance, can be defined as a “community museum” because has its roots in curiosity, intuition and will of a community of people linked by the passion for Olivetti and its history. Recently, has been opened a new showroom dedicated to Elea 9003, the first commercial computer in the world. Could you imagine a world without computers? Yet, only 60 years ago it was like that! Computer was used only for military purposes.
:o
Till, in the mid 50s, the genius of Adriano Olivetti developed a commercial computer to be used within the companies.
He, a brilliant mind, has found the way to anticipate the future, to look “forward”, to query paradigms of that time. A Steve Jobs or  a Tony Ryan of times gone by, in short.
:)


A short but due excursus.
Elea 9003 is a project with high technological content, developed through a process typical of craft, made by continuous check, tests and reiterations. Therefore, we could say that a real distinction between technology and craft doesn’t exist, as in the whole Italian industrial production process of the XX century. The reiteration, moreover, is an important tool to refine the production process, and it becomes a tool of quality guarantee for the product itself.
Arduino, created by Massimo Banzi for Intercatio Design Institutre of Ivrea, is made exactly with the same spirit of the previous projects, just as Elea.
In this showroom Olivetti’s adventure and the history of Elea were dismembered, divided, mixed and then reassembled on a wallpaper of 460 A4 sheets. In order to draw closer the visitors to the world of electronics, interactive experiences have been offered, like providing two systems to teach children the method of programming.

The museum, therefore, is not static anymore, but a continuous revision process that involves different people and that is never ended.
End of the short but due excursus.
Short, because we could have written pages and pages about Elea, Olivetti, the process of production…but the net is far more efficient in providing all the info.
Due, because it’s an extraordinary example of planning process, mounting of the showroom, conception of the museum.
3. How a contemporary museum should be, therefore?
3.1 First of all, a museum should transmit an evident value, easily perceived. To do this, for instance, could be more interesting reverse the paradigm and make evident the process that would take to the final result.
Let’s think about “Talk to me”, the exhibition that will be inaugurated at MoMA next 24th  July 2011, but that has already available online a website and a blog that prove each step of the exhibition: in this way, everyone can give his own opinion about the selection of the objects, becoming part of the process itself.
Cool, isn’t it?
3.2 A museum should be interesting, surprising, gripping. It should catch visitors’ attention and rouse them. It should force to look at the world from a different perspective.
3.3 Since we haven’t got at our disposal lots of economic resources (eh, the crisis!), a museum should respect criteria of economical sustainability. Ryanair e Easyjet invent low cost flights, iTunes let us downloading tracks with 1€, Ikea sells design objects with “new lower prices, new ideas”, (to quote its last ad)… so why don’t imagine a low cost museum as well?
A first example:
The Architects’ Organization of Trieste has invited NABA to mount the main exhibition for its event “Piazza dell’architettura”.
Clear wish: a beautiful, impeccable, perfect exhib.
The tie of the project: no budget. They could just recycle elements and materials from other exhibitions of Tosetto Allestimenti.
The result: mission accomplished, everyone incredibly happy and satisfied.
Link to the report of the local journalists on the website of the event.
The same context for Museo di Arti Femminili in Vallo della Lucania, where a private collector wanted to transform his own collection in a museum, but:
The tie: really few money;
The result: project realized via fax thanks to a series of instructions and reusing Ikea furniture transformed for the occasion;
The more satisfying result: the same ties allowed to reach an high level of sophistication and solution completely unexpected.


More photos.

Maybe because it’s Wednesday (when there are generally the Italian parliamentary “question time”), but today we try to ask some questions.

1. Can a museum be hold in a suitcase?

According to Duchamp, to all appearances, it can. His project, “The box in a suitacase”, is a portable miniature monograph including sixty-nine reproductions of the artist’s own work.

Vasya Nagy has created, indeed, a curatorial project based on the idea that a “travelling” exhibition could fit into a suitcase and be virtually exposed everywhere. Here the link to the project “Art in a suitcase”.

Let’s try to figure out other settings…

Can become a museum: a tram, as the project made by the Italian-Albanese lab and the group Diogene…

…the cellar of a building, as the latest Paul Mc Carthy’s exhibition Pig Island in the basement of Palazzo Citterio in Milan…

…an ex working district, as that one in Lambrate, that has hosted during Fuorisalone 2010 the exhibition 13.798 grams of design, organized by Maria Cristina Didero and Susanna Legrenzi…

…the train depots, as Porta Genova ones, in which has been organized Paola Pivi’s exhibition My Religion is Kindness. Thank You, See You In The Future

…or the city itself, as the little Vevey, in Switzerland, where JR started a new project, Unframed, using pictures taken by other photographs, more or less known, and exposing them on various buildings of the city…

Well, I would say that now we are pretty far from the traditional idea of museum: finally. Very appealing.

2.But…what’s a museum?

Wikipedia docet: “a museum is a building or an institution which houses and cares for a collection of artifacts and other objects of scientific, artistic, or historical importance and makes them available for public viewing through exhibits that may be permanent or temporary”.

And what if the reality, as we have already started seeing, was a little bit different?

The lab-museum Tecnologic@mente, for instance, can be defined as a “community museum” because has its roots in curiosity, intuition and will of a community of people linked by the passion for Olivetti and its history. Recently, has been opened a new showroom dedicated to Elea 9003, the first commercial computer in the world. Could you imagine a world without computers? Yet, only 60 years ago it was like that! Computer was used only for military purposes.

:o

Till, in the mid 50s, the genius of Adriano Olivetti developed a commercial computer to be used within the companies.

He, a brilliant mind, has found the way to anticipate the future, to look “forward”, to query paradigms of that time. A Steve Jobs or  a Tony Ryan of times gone by, in short.

:)

A short but due excursus.

Elea 9003 is a project with high technological content, developed through a process typical of craft, made by continuous check, tests and reiterations. Therefore, we could say that a real distinction between technology and craft doesn’t exist, as in the whole Italian industrial production process of the XX century. The reiteration, moreover, is an important tool to refine the production process, and it becomes a tool of quality guarantee for the product itself.

Arduino, created by Massimo Banzi for Intercatio Design Institutre of Ivrea, is made exactly with the same spirit of the previous projects, just as Elea.

In this showroom Olivetti’s adventure and the history of Elea were dismembered, divided, mixed and then reassembled on a wallpaper of 460 A4 sheets. In order to draw closer the visitors to the world of electronics, interactive experiences have been offered, like providing two systems to teach children the method of programming.

The museum, therefore, is not static anymore, but a continuous revision process that involves different people and that is never ended.

End of the short but due excursus.

Short, because we could have written pages and pages about Elea, Olivetti, the process of production…but the net is far more efficient in providing all the info.

Due, because it’s an extraordinary example of planning process, mounting of the showroom, conception of the museum.

3. How a contemporary museum should be, therefore?

3.1 First of all, a museum should transmit an evident value, easily perceived. To do this, for instance, could be more interesting reverse the paradigm and make evident the process that would take to the final result.

Let’s think about Talk to me, the exhibition that will be inaugurated at MoMA next 24th  July 2011, but that has already available online a website and a blog that prove each step of the exhibition: in this way, everyone can give his own opinion about the selection of the objects, becoming part of the process itself.

Cool, isn’t it?

3.2 A museum should be interesting, surprising, gripping. It should catch visitors’ attention and rouse them. It should force to look at the world from a different perspective.

3.3 Since we haven’t got at our disposal lots of economic resources (eh, the crisis!), a museum should respect criteria of economical sustainability. Ryanair e Easyjet invent low cost flights, iTunes let us downloading tracks with 1€, Ikea sells design objects with “new lower prices, new ideas”, (to quote its last ad)… so why don’t imagine a low cost museum as well?

A first example:

The Architects’ Organization of Trieste has invited NABA to mount the main exhibition for its event “Piazza dell’architettura”.

Clear wish: a beautiful, impeccable, perfect exhib.

The tie of the project: no budget. They could just recycle elements and materials from other exhibitions of Tosetto Allestimenti.

The result: mission accomplished, everyone incredibly happy and satisfied.

Link to the report of the local journalists on the website of the event.

The same context for Museo di Arti Femminili in Vallo della Lucania, where a private collector wanted to transform his own collection in a museum, but:

The tie: really few money;

The result: project realized via fax thanks to a series of instructions and reusing Ikea furniture transformed for the occasion;

The more satisfying result: the same ties allowed to reach an high level of sophistication and solution completely unexpected.

More photos.

Proust can remember his childhood at his aunt’s house in Combray thanks to the taste of the Madeleine cookies, Mr Arthens fervently mines years of gastronomic delights and discoveries in search of one single flavor…
The question, therefore, comes easily: our senses (smell, sight, taste…) can remind us passed experiences or feelings? It seems so.
Proust talks about “spontaneous memory” (the so-called epiphany), that is stirred by an accidental sensation and brings us to the past letting us “feel” THAT past, live it as it is happening right now.
If it does happen, why don’t we play with sounds, noises, smells…in order to bring back memories? Why don’t we use tools of playback really used by our grandparents, great grandparents, uncles, friends, acquaintances and so on?
Our grandfather Joe could have enjoyed to make his own movie with a camera 8 mm like this one

Hundreds of young people could have passed their evenings listening to the Pink Floyd thanks to the famous portable record player Penny

A group of friends, at Jack’s house, in that cold December 1975, could have organized an “horror night” watching “Profondo Rosso”, thanks to the latest video recorder Betamax by Sony, that had replaced the old, big, awkward and bulky reel to reel recorder.
But don’t forget the walkman too (brilliant answer to mass society? But that’s another story…fantastic the comparison with the Zen garden on Kyoto, indeed!)…

…the projector dial carousel…
…the musicassettes C60, C90, C120…

…the everlasting 45s…

………………….
And then? Then, times are changing (unfortunately or not).
True, well-known, inevitable.
And how you reinterpret the recording of sound changes as well.
Vinyl record players that turn and play music while suspended in midair, pens that can record sound as a line on paper and then play it back, practice and portable recorders like that one simply made by a corrugated cardboard sleeve, or “Linos”, modern, small and very, very cool.
Product designer Yuri Suzuki has created a collection of projects linked to the recording and the reproduction of sounds. “Soundchaser” gives you the chance to create new tracks made from laser-cut pieces of vinyl records; the “Finger Player is a stylus that fits on your finger, so you can listen to the sounds being produced; “Sound Jewellery” has sound grooves etched into a necklace, bracelet and brooch.
Till “Evo”, a personal recording device which can be worn as a pendant or pocket watch, particularly useful for travelers. It’s an intuitive interface that provides contextual information, captures still and moving pictures with audio and enables autonomy and self reliance.

Proust can remember his childhood at his aunt’s house in Combray thanks to the taste of the Madeleine cookies, Mr Arthens fervently mines years of gastronomic delights and discoveries in search of one single flavor…

The question, therefore, comes easily: our senses (smell, sight, taste…) can remind us passed experiences or feelings? It seems so.

Proust talks about “spontaneous memory” (the so-called epiphany), that is stirred by an accidental sensation and brings us to the past letting us “feel” THAT past, live it as it is happening right now.

If it does happen, why don’t we play with sounds, noises, smells…in order to bring back memories? Why don’t we use tools of playback really used by our grandparents, great grandparents, uncles, friends, acquaintances and so on?

Our grandfather Joe could have enjoyed to make his own movie with a camera 8 mm like this one

Hundreds of young people could have passed their evenings listening to the Pink Floyd thanks to the famous portable record player Penny

A group of friends, at Jack’s house, in that cold December 1975, could have organized an “horror night” watching “Profondo Rosso”, thanks to the latest video recorder Betamax by Sony, that had replaced the old, big, awkward and bulky reel to reel recorder.

But don’t forget the walkman too (brilliant answer to mass society? But that’s another story…fantastic the comparison with the Zen garden on Kyoto, indeed!)…

…the projector dial carousel…

…the musicassettes C60, C90, C120…

…the everlasting 45s…

………………….

And then? Then, times are changing (unfortunately or not).

True, well-known, inevitable.

And how you reinterpret the recording of sound changes as well.

Vinyl record players that turn and play music while suspended in midair, pens that can record sound as a line on paper and then play it back, practice and portable recorders like that one simply made by a corrugated cardboard sleeve, or “Linos”, modern, small and very, very cool.

Product designer Yuri Suzuki has created a collection of projects linked to the recording and the reproduction of sounds. “Soundchaser” gives you the chance to create new tracks made from laser-cut pieces of vinyl records; the “Finger Player is a stylus that fits on your finger, so you can listen to the sounds being produced; “Sound Jewellery” has sound grooves etched into a necklace, bracelet and brooch.

Till “Evo”, a personal recording device which can be worn as a pendant or pocket watch, particularly useful for travelers. It’s an intuitive interface that provides contextual information, captures still and moving pictures with audio and enables autonomy and self reliance.

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