Francesca Grilli Sparks 2021
project curated by Paola Tognon
Installation + Performance:
7 – 8 May 2022
10:00 – 19:00
Performance only Saturday 7 May between 3 - 6 pm
Press release

Sparks 2021 pivots around the small but revolutionary action of consigning in the hands of children the reading of our future as a gesture of hope and rupture with the past. The action is performed by Agata, the artist’s daughter, who accompanies adults inside a darkened space, where she will read their hands one at a time, thus activating an open revelatory and interpretative process, where they are themselves the makers of visions and reflections.

The entire performance is based on 3 elements: the hands – at a time when contact is limited– our most exposed body parts, visible testimony of our body, point of contact between different generations; the savvy hand reading, utilised by Agata as a game to express imagination and desires; the cap-sculptures shaped as baseball caps with a reclining visor. A playful echo of elms, once worn they signal the beginning of the performance as the girl is shielded from the direct gaze of the adults.

The project Sparks, as developed in its final version, includes and transforms physical distance into an element of strength. Touching between child and adult is absent but recalled by a small customised flashlight that the children use to move the adults within the space and to read their hands.

The installation of Sparks 2021is a situated work made of the caps/elms scattered in the space and an amplified soundtrack elaborated from the recordings of the imaginative predictions of the girl. RAYSwhich accompanies the installation is a single-channel video, in which a group of children wonder in an abandoned school and theatre building. In their movement they discover a familiar and at the same time eerie cap.

Francesca Grilli (1978; lives and works in Bologna and Bruxelles) utilises a multidisciplinary language focussing on performance and installation. She has participated in numerous performance artfestivals and exhibitedin solo and collective exhibitions in international museums and institutions including: Baltic Circle, Helsinki (2020); Mladi Levi Festival, Ljubjlana (2020);Kaunas Biennal, Kaunas (2019); Saal Biennal, Tallin (2019); Santarcangelo Festival, Santarcangelo - Rimini (2019-2017); Palais De Tokyo, Parigi (2017); Serralves Foundation, Porto (2017); Netwerk, Aalst (2017); Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven (2017-2015); Kunsthalle Osnabrueck, Osnabrueck (2017); Centrale Fies, Fies - Trento (2017 - 2006); MAXXI, Roma (2016); Padiglione Italia, 55. Biennale Arte di Venezia (2013); MADRE, Napoli (2011); MACRO, Roma (2012); Serpentine Gallery, London (2009); MAMBO, Bologna (2010), Manifesta7, Bolzano (2008).


A project curated by Paola Tognon and promoted by Contemporary Locus

Project supported by the Italian Council (9th Edition, 2020), program to promote Italian contemporary art in the world by the Directorate-General for Contemporary Creativity of the Italian Ministry of Culture


Project partner: Corpoceleste

Museum of destination: GAMeC, Galleria d’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea, Bergamo

Cultural partners: Associazione Teatro di Roma, Rassegna Buffalo, MACRO - Museo di Arte Contemporanea, Roma, IT; Base-Milano, Milano, IT; Immaginare Orlando, Bergamo; Kaaitheater, Bruxelles, BE; Kunstencentrum BUDA, Kortrijk, BE; Kunst Merano Merano Arte, Merano, IT; LEVEL FIVE - Artist Cooperative Brussels, BE; MACTE - Museo di Arte Contemporanea di Termoli, IT; MAXXI L’Aquila, L’Aquila, IT; Netwerk Aalst, Aalst, BE; RUPERT, Vilnius, LT; Snaporazverein, Samaden, CH; STUK Arts Center, Leuven, BE. Con il supporto di Flanders State of the Arts

Sparks 2021 wishes to thank for their support during its journey: Santarcangelo Festival (Santarcangelo, IT); Welcome to the village (Leeuwarden, NL); Saal Biennaal (Tallin, ET); workspacebrussels (Bruxelles, BE)

MACTE - Museo di Arte Contemporanea di Termoli
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