Coesistenza/ Coexistence

Incontrare l’altro attraverso il corpo e le parole/
Meeting the other through body and words

by Gaia del Negro and Silvia Luraschi, 13 July 2021

This workshop was held with 8 participants (6 women & 2 men) in Milano, Parco di Trenno, 20th June 2021, by the artist Cinzia Delorenzi and researchers Gaia Del Negro & Silvia Luraschi; all photographs (c) Gaia Bonanomi

Object of translation n. 1: Ospitare / lavoro in divenire, di e con Cinzia Delorenzi, in residenza, dal 24 al 31 maggio 2019, prova aperta il 3 giugno 2019.

Object of translation n. 2: two poems from Antonella Anedda, Notti di pace occidentale (Donzelli Editore, Roma 1999).

This was the first of our two research workshops on experiential multimodal translation of a performance and two poetic texts in a public park in the city of Milan.

The participants met at the park at 10am on a Sunday morning. Only a few knew each other. They were 8 (6 women and 2 men) who defined themselves as: a teacher of Italian as a second language, two social workers – one with an intercultural focus-, a cultural worker, an editor and creative writing teacher, a researcher and lecturer of cinema and visual arts, an architect, an actress. Gaia B, a young woman, and successful fashion photographer, participated as an inside observer. The whole group – including the photographer – formed through personal contact of us, Silvia, Gaia, and Cinzia.

We introduced the international project and our collaborating artist Cinzia, a dancer-choreographer and somatic practitioner of relational performance with different people and environment. Cinzia guided us in perceiving our body (immune system/border, from the skin to the digestive system) with the aim to explore coexistence inside our own bodies, in relation to the space. On Sunday, Milanese people go to parks to do sports, play music, walk the dog, picnic with family and friends. Often people with migratory background meet. You can see Pakistani play cricket or Peruvians dancing. During the somatic practice, we heard a summer camp of school children playing loudly.

The somatic listening in the environment prepared us to perform a translation of some of the material from Cinzia’s show, Ospitare/Hosting others. First, participants (and us as participant-researchers) were invited to create a personal safe space (a “spazietto” or little cosy space as we called it), by unrolling wool threads and placing small personal objects – taken from home – on a chosen site in an area of the park with tall trees. Each person took a meaningful posture in their spazietto; then Cinzia asked us to visit other spaces or come back and take our posture to show it to the visitors.

After this translation of object n.1, we introduced object n.2, the first two poems of Antonella Anedda’s Notti di pace occidentale (Donzelli Editore, Roma 1999), a book that questions the destinies of our world starting from memory of the bloody history of the West: Vedo dal buio and Non volevo nomi per morti sconosciuti.

The participants read the poems aloud, then we individually chose a line of one poem and wrote it on a cardboard with a coloured pencil, with the idea to draw attention to the quality of the gesture and the shape of the letters. The cardboards were then circulated in the group to read and “touch” the translations. Then the participants walked to find a place among or inside the spazietto, where they/we wished to locate their cardboard translation. We stopped and read the line to the others two times, listening to create a multivocal composition.

At this point Cinzia played an original music from her performance (a mix of environmental sound and voices recorded by her in Morocco) and we walked again looking at the installation from different perspectives, also embodied (standing, sitting, lying, close by, from afar…). As the music changed into Cambodian traditional songs and other world music, we started to dismantle our creation by rolling up the thread and picking up our and others’ objects.

Sitting in a final circle, the participants said a few words and wrote a note about the experience.

Siamo in cerca di confini ma già molto abitati (Sara Puricelli, social worker)

Io. Un’identità che non è tale. Una moltitudine che si trasforma. Una soglia… (Simona Pezzano, researcher and lecturer of cinema and visual arts)

Tradurre può essere attraversare, può essere lasciar trasformare, lasciare aperto il varco. (Isabella Macchi, actress)

La pelle ascolta … diventa parte di un tutto alla fine del suo ciclo (Attilio Cristiani, cultural worker)

Mi è piaciuto accorgermi del mio corpo senza l’ansia di tradurlo in parole ben costruite (Luciano Sartirana, editor and creative writing teacher)

Il senso del sè parte dalla bocca. Baciarsi. Si può vivere senza? (Maddalena Ferraresi, architect)

Siamo tutti inespressi, mai completamente traducibili (Dalia Yemaya El Saadany, social worker)

La traduzione è qualcosa che può ridurre i confini? Può spostarli o solo oltrepassarli? (Alessia Benenti, teacher of Italian as a second language)

Read about our next steps in our blog entry from 8th November.

2 thoughts on “Coesistenza/ Coexistence

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