ARType. Archetypes of Contemporary Video Art
The evolution of video languages and the increasingly sophisticated techniques for video manipulation now impose a systematic rethinking about the ways in which this complex group of factors influences the expressive forms of contemporary art experimentation. In order to understand this phenomenon, since 2006 a group of Italian researchers from the universities of Bologna, Padua and Venice began to collect the most recent national video art production.
The proposed project
The project is called ARType. It results from the desire of exploring some archetypes of contemporary imaginary as primary elements of human culture seen through the eye of art. Indeed, the neologism the project’s title is inspired to is the combination of art and archetypes, in the belief that the experimental language of video art provides a privileged access to the complexity of anthropological structures in today’s world.
The idea of archetype, that transversally embraces the entire history of human knowledge, from the Classical tradition through the nineteenth-century humanities, has acquired an even larger symbolic value in the world of art and a social relevance revealed by the artist’s intervention. Indeed, the archetypal forms of human existence silently and quietly shape the realms of ordinary life; they affect our habits, our attitudes, our small daily gestures. And all of this happens because archetypes are original forms – arché/týpos –, ancestral displays of symbolic imagination, expressions of the collective unconscious rooted in the innermost spaces of the self and ceaselessly repeating themselves.
The destiny of art is breaking such monotonous sequence. Artists have always been the interpreters
of a “vision” – this is also true of the wide range of original experimenters who work with the language of video, the expressive means that inherently aspires to subvert the ordinary mechanisms
of visual addiction.
The curators – Guido Bartorelli, Paolo Granata, Silvia Grandi, Fabiola Naldi, Stefania Portinari, professors at the universities of Bologna, Padua and Venice – have selected the works of thirty-six Italian contemporary artists and have referred them to six archetypes: Ritual, Play, Territory, Gesture, Journey, the Self.
The thirty-six works selected aim at tracing an anthropological map of contemporary imaginary by revealing some traits of the visual unconscious, evoking the primary experiences of human existence in order to discover the irresistible fascination of archetypes in a world that is crowded with images.
Rebecca Agnes, Karin Andersen, Sergia Avveduti, Bianco Valente, Basmati, Riccardo Benassi, Filippo Berta, Davide Bertocchi, Botto & Bruno, Enrico Bressan, Alessandra Caccia, Stefano Cagol, Silvia Camporesi, T-Yong Chung, Luca Coclite, Audrey Coïaniz, Michael Fliri, Michela Formenti, Aldo Giannotti & Markus Hofer, Kensuke Koike, Giovanni Kronenberg, Marcantonio Lunardi, Marco Morandi, Virginia Mori, Bruno Muzzolini, Massimiliano Nazzi, Christian Niccoli, Gabriele Picco, Giovanna Ricotta, Donato Sansone, Angelo Sarleti, Natalia Saurin, Danilo Torre, Virgilio Villoresi, Debora Vrizzi, Diego Zuelli.
The length of video selected is about 120 min. Videos are in original language.