Friday, 27 May 2016

World Water Joy Project - Participating Artist - David Casini

Piovigginando, 2015

Piovigginando sale is a fountain that works on a closed system, using a dehumidifier. Through this artwork, David Casini focuses once more on water issue related theme, like in other previous works like Planète Blue (2005) or Come quando fuori piove (2012). Here, the water is connected to the air humidity, creating a strong relation with the surroundings, in particular with the water’s volume present in the space, the temperature, and the public among which is placed the artwork. The fountain’s system is really simple : a pump sends in continuous cycle the water that the dehumidifier draws from the air, and it stops when the atmosphere is dry. The little pieces of glass, similar to those of the analytical laboratories , the brass joints and the colored rubber tubes create a pictorial three-dimensional form ; the funnel has been done with a marine sponge. In Piovigginando sale, the use of an organic element, typical choice in the artist’s productions, disrupts the object function: the sponge – natural absorbent material – covered by resin, specifically where the water flows, becomes completely waterproof. The structure of the work , vertical and thin , leads immediately to the idea of fragility and of balance.

Thursday, 26 May 2016

World Water Joy Project - Participating Artist - Chéri Samba

Problème d'Eau, 2004
Acryl on canvas
135 x 200 x 4 cm
Courtesy of the artist and CAAC - The Pigozzi collection  - Geneva

"Africa’s most “water-rich” country, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), is facing an acute drinking water supply crisis. Only an estimated 26 per cent of its population has access to safe drinking water, well below the approximately 60 per cent average for Sub-Saharan Africa. Due to the deteriorated state of its water infrastructure – undermined by years of underinvestment and conflict – and a rapidly growing population, the trend in water supply coverage was until recently in regression. Social and public health consequences of water service breakdown have been considerable. The poorest sections of society have been disproportionately impacted by the decline in service delivery and rising water costs, both in rural areas but increasingly in rapidly urbanizing cities."  
(Excerpt from UNEP's Water Issues in the Democratic Republic of the Congo:Challenges and Opportunities - Technical Report

The work of Chéri Samba is deeply related to the issues of congolese society. With Problème d'Eau the artist focuses on the problem of lack of water, which, as the UNEP's report is exposing, is still in a alarming situation. In his painting, the artist represents himself seated on a space rocket, leaving the earth to go and look for water on Mars, the planet of fire. All the actions seems to be vain and without any sense, underlining to this terrible fact : we are still not able to find the solution to provide  water to all the humans being, even though this element is essential to life. 

World Water Joy Project - Participating Artist - Iseult Labote Karamaounas

La Chaudière, 2005


"The sento, the Japanese public baths, date back from the 8th century. Currently and even if less in number, they form a mixed democratic island within the neighbourhoods, where the youth and the old, the officers and the workers, the employees and the retired purify their bodies and souls. The over-connected electric Tokyo, a slave of modernism contradicts the Westerners. Draped in its vaporous volutes, Edo pines, Edo stretches out in the fire of water before coming out purified. Even though the segregation of men and women was finally instituted in the 19th century upon the arrival of prudish Christians, the Japanese way of seeing nudity is not the same as that of a Westerner. The tradition of bath, who would originate from Shinto religion and its water purification ritual, captured by the Greco-Swiss artist, derives from the homo sociabilis source, this unshakeable link between being and nothingness, love and death. It is not the case here of a mere moment of relaxation, a cleaning of the body, but the fulfilment of a rite which transcends the individual and makes him part of a history, of a quest of absolute, a moment of eternity. Through the eyepiece, Iseult Labote’s sight experiences the privilege of not existing for the other. And despite the discomfort felt at first sight, there is nothing more extraordinary than what she gets to see: the intimacy of a civilisation.The intimacy of a social link, of a culture, of a tradition, of a history evokes the wisdom of an Asian-like Tristes Tropiques.

Wednesday, 25 May 2016

Venice - Biennale of Architecture - Conference

May 28th 
Moderation: Adelina von Fürstenberg 

Wednesday, 18 May 2016

World Water Joy Project - Participating Artist - Martand Khosla

The Spirit Earns – I, II & III, 2013
Plan, Elevation, Section (From the series Rabi-Kharif-Zaid), 2012

The Spirit Earns – I, II & III, 2013
Brick grains and dust, size variable

India is in the middle of one of the worst droughts in contemporary times.  There have been several hundred deaths already related to this drought and the crisis appears to be worsening as the days progress.
The scarcity of water and the resultant crop failures have been one of the primary causes for rural to urban migration in India.  An extremely large number of rural migrant workers find unskilled employment in the construction industry in urban India, as we continue to divert the countries resources (particularly water) from rural to urban settlements.
The question that looms in front of us is –
‘Is water a resource and a fundamental right? Or is it a commodity?’