How is it possible to define and create a body of death through an artistic act before becoming a dead body? Taking as starting point in the question framed by author Benjamin Noys “(...) how should we respond to our exposure to death in modern culture?” (Culture of Death, 2005), how does the I start subverting the structure it is socially inscribed in using death as a tool? In which form/way can I operate and is it a matter of resistance or of subvertion?
The exploration of the topic of death in contemporary society and its relationship with the idea of exposure of bodies to norms,forms of power and hierarchies starts with the attempt at inscribing the personal memory, intended as artistic legacy, within the institution of the art school the artist is attending in Holland.
In Spring 2016, I start negotiating in legal terms the possibility of leaving my body of artistic work to the Dutch Art Institute. I inquiry lawyers and ask for assistance in writing the document, testament or last will, that I would present to the school during a public event in May 2016.
What happens, in fact, if we humans treat an institution as a personal interlocutor on a quotidian base, as a recipient of our joys and sorrows and legacies, and not just as a location for the regulations of our lives?
Situation #1 The Kitchen not the Restaurant, May 2016 / with the intentional but not complicit involvement of the director of the school Mrs. Gabrielle Schleijpen
From the score of situation #1
MEANWHILE, Valentina Curandi is waiting outside for meeting Gabrielle Schleijpen. From here on, for everybody in the room, the following scene UNFOLDS: Valentina Curandi performs the role of the artist body and Gabrielle Schleijpen performs the role of the institutional body.
HEREINAFTER, Valentina Curandi is referred to as the artist body and Gabrielle Schleijpen as the institutional body.
The artist body CLARIFIES that the interaction occurring is presently regulated by the frame of the Master Program in Art Praxis. she ARGUMENTS that, ALBEIT the highly concentrated period of time given to contact, their existence is changing INDEED. Because of that contact, they are mutually shaped and publicly recognized as the student body and the school body.
HEREINAFTER, the artist body is referred to as the student body and the institutional body as the school body.
FURTHERMORE, as residual bequest after any estate expenses and specific bequests are paid, the student body as testatrix GIVES and DEVISES to the school body as beneficiary the body of artistic works that has been produced and realized since 2008 and remained unsold in her property up to the moment of death, as gift, rest, residue and remainder of her estate, both real and personal.
HEREINAFTER, the student body is referred to as the testatrix and the school body as the beneficiary.
The testatrix PAUSES and AWAITS to hear a counterpoint from the beneficiary in which the unknown element of the long term viability is considered.
Should the beneficiary not survive the testatrix, what shall happen to the body of artistic works?
Time limit reached.
Situation #2 The Kitchen not the Restaurant, July 2016 / special thanks to the student body of Valentina Miorandi