Iteotwawki since 2003

Che c’é di nuovo, uno sguardo sulla scena artistica emergente in Ticino, MASI, Lugano, 2016

Iteotwawki since 2003 is a work presented in the exhibition Che c’é di Nuovo, uno sguardo sulla scena artistica emergente in Ticino. This work consists of an installation, a performance and a movie.

Iteotwawki is a word to contract the sentence: It’s The End Of the World As We Know It. This term is taken by one of the first fun footage on youtube with statements of George W. Bush about the Iraq war which also became a song of the rock band REM: It’s the end of the world as we know it.

These words which sound like a tribal language is so linked with nowadays culture and contemporary situations and in my opinion addresses the context my generation has to deal and grow with: a time in constant update.

Part of the work consists of a Jacket presenting this concept « iteotwawki, since 2003 » and was worn to perform during the opening or later hung in the installation. A lot of pockets inside the jacket were full of DVDs with a documentary movie realized in Ticino during a protest against the start of the Iraq war in 2003. Quite a majority of Swiss Italian students were part of this protest and the movie can be considered as a generational portrait or a collective picture taken in a specific moment. At that time there weren’t many film devices and this movie is one of the rare traces of this event. Also because of this and seeing the consequences of the Iraqi war I consider this protest to have been removed by the collective unconsciousness. This is why I chose to distribute it « under coat » as something that could be from a black market – as a sort of black market memory. The coat rack is made from cans of beer with Swiss national iconography. One reason is to evoke the main critics of the protest in newspaper at that time who claimed that in the street were only drunken youth without any idea of the world. The second reason is to use these critics as an identity portrait and transform it as a totem for describing Swiss youth, creating an object which supports this collective memory.

The performance consisted of giving discreetly the DVDs from under the coat or putting them in bags or pocket of the audience as a sort of inverted pick pocket.

Here are a few pictures of installation and the jacket, the full version of the movie on DVD and the youtube video with George W. Bush fun footage.