“For its accurate and patient work on the neighbourhood,
combining artistic research, listening to the suburb,
participation, story telling and theory.
Periferico creates relationships with the inhabitants
and enhances local identities
and thus it reveils a tridimensional conception
of artistic experience and urban regeneration.”
From the motivation to the candidacy at Rete Critica Prize 2017 – Online magazine Stratagemmi.com
Periferico is a well-known and recognized italian art festival that moves from the idea to bring a site-specific art project in suburb areas of the city of Modena, with a particular interest for those neighbourhood that are in the process of urban and social changes.
A peculiar feature of the festival is that it takes place in non-theatrical and unusual urban spaces of the city, blighted areas or public sites which are not enhanced within the urban territory, whose use is discussed and negotiated with public institutions and private citizens, according to the spot selected. Every year, Amigdala seeks new, uncommon and unexpected locations, by conducting a long research process within the territory, through meetings, visits and site surveys, often involving architects, urban planners and other experts of the city as well.
Periferico is thus an itinerant festival: it changes and transforms every year according to the partnerships that Amigdala establishes within the area. In time, we have had the opportunity to observe a deep interest among the audience for this work modality, which allows the citizens to enter spaces whose access is normally forbidden or strongly limited, as well as to approach “forgotten” places from a new and unforeseen perspective. The disparate spaces that have been used throughout the nine editions of Periferico have been chosen by way of a continued process of analysis of the city and exchange with urban planners, architects, anthropologists and public administrators. Each selected place, indeed, far from merely representing a “location” to perform into, gives life every year to a different variation of the project, in relation to the organization process but also to the contents, and completely re-arranges the dramaturgy of the festival.
Every year, Periferico arranges a program which involves artists from the areas of theatre, dance, music, graphic arts, photography and hybrid activities originated in loco and merged in accordance with a contemporary understanding of the planning concept, whose outcomes are closely related to and depend on the specific location in which the events take place. The activities have often required the direct participation of the audience to the realization of the event itself, leading to the creation of socializing moments, as well as to the involvement of workers, ex-workers, neighbours, and passing-by pedestrians. The main result of this procedure is the broadening of the audience toward sectors who are generally not related to theatre, as well as the actualization of initiatives (which frequently take place outdoor) in suburban and – at times – deprived areas of the city.
— Urban recovery; temporary re-use; development of the participation processes and safeguard of the collective heritage; citizens’ involvement and re-appropriation of the urban spaces.
— Enhancement of public and private sites and the formulation of imaginative processes aimed at rethinking a place’s functions, its role within the urban fabric and its story.
— The extension of cross-cutting networks of relationships and the fostering of best practises at a local level (such as renowned enterprises which choose to invest in a cultural project, museums which explore new modality of fruition, artisans who export their “Made in Italy” products to esteemed locations all over the world etc).
— The broadening of the audiences of contemporary arts; redefining the ways in which it is possible to attend artistic and cultural initiatives; the participation in a collective experience in which the audience is active; the enhancement of people’s skills and interests through their active participation.
DRAMATURGY OF THE SPACES
The disparate spaces that have been used throughout the seven editions of Periferico have been chosen by way of a continued process of analysis of the city and exchange with urban planners, architects, anthropologists and public administrators.
Each selected place, indeed, far from merely representing a “location” to perform into, gives life every year to a different variation of the project, in relation to the organisation process but also to the contents, and completely re-arranges the dramaturgy of the festival.
Between June and November the members of the association conduce interviews with different sectors of the public administration, meetings with urban planners and architects, with associations and groups which work on several sites, enterprises’ and museums’ directors. They carry out site surveys and researches on specific urban areas or spaces in order to select the location which will be object of their work for the following year.
A number of weeks between November and January are devoted to the analysis of the space selected, of its architectural features and its context, of its strengths and weaknesses as well of the permits that will be required, of the type of work that would be demanded according to the particular features of the location etc… Furthermore, the space is mapped and its geography is drawn on paper, by locating the different activities within its perimeter.
Referring to the characteristics of the space selected, the working team jointly defines the dramaturgy of the festival, the core themes on which the guest artists would be asked to work on and the modalities through which the spectator’s experience would develop. The artists are invited to contribute with site specific performances, related to the topics pinpointed, by interplaying with the limits and the potentials of the place. The final work would be a collective dramaturgy under the direction and the coordination of Amigdala.
An essential component of the organisation of the festival is the direct participation of part of the audience, citizens, inhabitants of the selected area, ex-workers who were connected to that location and so on. Their involvement can give life to interviews, installations, performances whose protagonists are not actors or professionals but rather people who are concretely related to the spaces in which the festival takes place and who have experienced them directly, and continue to do so. Their experiences, combined with their skills and passions, become a completing element of the artistic project.
Experimental residencies, staging production, rehearsals, communication, audience involvement, unexpected events, evaluation of the outcomes.
THE LAST EDITIONS, IN SHORT
IX EDITION (2017): TALL, FRAGILE, URGENT
The dream kneads
the things belonging to day and night,
the things of ordinary life
so that they can resist
to the powers of darkness
with full calm.
LJUD (SLO), FILIPPO TAPPI (IT), CESARE LEONARDI (IT), ISABELLA BORDONI (IT), COMPAGNIA ABBONDANZA BERTONI (IT), RADHARANI PERNARČIČ (SLO), OFFICE FOR A HUMAN THEATRE (IT), MUTA IMAGO (IT), CLAUDIA CATARZI (IT), ILARIA GRAZIANO and FRANCESCO FORNI (IT), AMIGDALA (IT), SILVIA TAGLIAZUCCHI-GIULIA FIORILLO-MARIA GRAZIA ARGENTIERI (IT)
ENRICO GABRIELLI (IT), FILIPPO ANDREATTA (Office for a Human Theatre, IT), LEONARDO DELOGU (IT), ISABELLA BORDONI (IT), CLAUDIO CALVARESI (IT), BEPPE MANNI (IT), ANTONIO CANOVI (IT), CLAUDIA SORACE (Muta Imago, IT), FEDERICO LOMBARDO (IT), ANGELO FANTONI (IT)
VIII EDITION (2016): FUTURE ANCESTOR
Periferico 8th edition takes place from 27 to 29 may 2016 between former laboratories and firms of the “Artisan Village” in West Modena.
An area of the city raised in 1953 thanks to a courageous political solution to the social and economical crisis of the postwar period. It was the first model of “Artisan Village” in Italy, that later spread all over the country and founded the Italian business model.
A small neighbourhood between city and countryside where life and work were strongly linked to each other, hand-craft and business went hand in hand and production chain and community bonds grew together.
The main themes behind this edition’s dramaturgy were born during a walk, while talking about this area’s present tense. The relationship between art and hand-craft, between memory
and change are the key words of this programme which reflects around the extinction of craftsmanship as a deep change both economical and antropological at the same time.
We have carried out a process of participant observation of the Villaggio Artigiano that lasted 5 months. During this period we have talked about this issues with several inhabitants of the neighbourhood and with several thinkers – architects, economists, antropologists – through interviews, analysis, meetings.
The festival was born on the ground of these queries and on the research of an artistic action that could express them. We have forced ourselves to waiting and to cross the Villaggio Artigiano day after day in order to listen.
Futuro Antenato (Future Ancestor) developed from this fieldwork as a reflection on the relationship between fall and creation, between the extintion and the future of a place where life still lingers over things, and confirms his presence again and again.
Several artists from all over Europe, lectures, performances, installations cross the Villaggio and face the present urgencies, trying to figure out a new restart, looking to the new things that have not arised yet and to those that have been lost.
In the racket of future and past bumping into each other, Futuro Antenato searches through the arts’ lense a particle still burning, or a new desire to celebrate once again.
Federica Rocchi e Gabriele Dalla Barba
Heiner Goebbels (DE), Lucilla Galeazzi (IT), Antonio Panzuto (IT), Márcia Lança e João Calixto (PT), Collettivo Jennifer Rosa (IT), Kaja Lorenci and Ivan Mijačević (SLO), Giannalberto De Filippis e Michal Mualem (IT), Carlo Infante (IT), Maurizio Lupinelli/Nerval Teatro (IT), Amigdala (IT), Les Parapluies (IT), Facci & Ubri (IT)
C. Guida and C. Calvaresi (IT), Andrea Ponso (IT), M. Menini and M. Paglialonga (IT)
VII EDITION (2015): ABODES
PERIFERICO 2015 TAKES PLACE IN A HUGE APARTMENT BUILDING CALLED R-NORD.
ARTISTS ARE ASKED TO WORK AROUND THE CONCEPT OF INHABITING, THROUGH AN INVESTIGATION AROUND THE LINKS BETWEEN HOME AND CULTURE, PUBLIC AND PRIVATE, STAYING AND PASSING THROUGH, AESTHETICS AND BEAUTY.
Periferico’s seventh edition (21-24 may 2015) is located in a city within the city: the huge apartment block called R-Nord. It’s a lively and dense place. It’s huge and impressive. It’s made of unbending concrete while its repetitive architectures hide a huge diversity inside.
This festival’s edition tries to reflect around the theme of dwelling, by opening a dialogue with contemporary arts and with the aim of a contribution in the process of redesigning the city maps and borders.
WE CHOSE THE RESIDENCY’S METHODOLOGY:
SEVEN ARTISTS ARE GOING TO LIVE A SUBJECTIVE TIMELAP
AT R-NORD IN ORDER TO REALIZE A UNIQUE WORK OF ART,
BY CREATING AN ORGANIC AND VISCERAL RELATIONSHIP
WITH THE CONTEXT.
Home, intimacy, borders: our house is the place that allows us to think about what’s outside. Inside and outside are two sides of a medal which link us the world. The urgency to reflect about abodes starts from this complex and contradictory value. We propose to face this reflection through the languages of arts, because art always nourishes from somewhere else.
WE ASKED TO THE ARTISTS TO ENTER THIS PLACE BAREFOOT, TO LIVE HERE DAY AFTER DAY AND THEN WE GAVE THEM A CERTAIN TIME TO CREATE THEIR WORK: DURING THE FESTIVAL, FOR FOUR DAYS, AT 5 PM O’CLOCK AND FOR FOUR HOURS, THE ARTIST’S ADOBES WILL OPEN UP TO SMALL GROUPS OF GUESTS.
Besides the artist-in-residence, we have the onour to host dancer Nina Dipla and musician Vincent Courtois, two great artists who accepted the challenge to present their latest productions at R-Nord.
Moreover, we present three speeches and meetings with intellectuals about the sense of contemporary dwelling: hopefully it will be an occasion to reinforce the power of words to reshape borders.
VISITORS WILL HAVE THE POSSIBILITY TO ENTER THE TEMPORARY ABODES OF DANCERS, MUSICIANS, THINKERS, THEATRE DIRECTORS.
THE PUBLIC IS GOING TO MINGLE WITH THE EVERYDAY INHABITANTS OF THE BUILDING, WITH NEIGHBOURS’ AND PEDESTRIANS’ REACTIONS, WITH THE ARTISTS THEMSELVES.
GIVING BIRTH TO A NEW RELATIONSHIP:
MORE OPEN, MORE SINCERE, MORE POSSIBLE.
Vincent Courtois (FRA), Nina Dipla (GR), Stefano Vercelli (IT), Giovanni Bortolani (IT), Tiziano Popoli e Davide Cristiani (IT), Davide Fasulo (IT), Martina Bosi (IT), Compagnia XE (IT), Zazous Quintet (IT), Amigdala (IT)
Flaviano Celaschi (IT), Franco Farinelli (IT), Paolo Mottana (IT)
V-VI EDITION (2014): EX POST
For its fourth edition, Periferico chose an abandoned space, a big public building that was formerly a post office situated just beside the railway station.
It’s a misterious venue, marked by a long-term state of neglect but at the same time with visible traces of its former use.
We imagined this Post Office as a fallow land, a big public space waiting to be sown anew. From the 20th october 2013 to 24th May 2014 Amigdala presented an artistic journey to approach the re-activation of the venue, culminating in the Ex Post event on the 24th and the 25th May.
Steps to Ex Post
20 october 2013
WHEN RìTHEY WENT AWAY (Musical guided visit at the Former Post Office)
Photographic documentation by Melissa Iannace
10th 11th may from 14 to 19
Cleaning and setting up of the venue open to volunteers
16th may h. 18.30
Guided visit with former mailman who worked in the post office
22th may h 17.30
Duck March by Caterina Moroni (Itinerant Performance in the neighbourhood)
23 may h. 17.30
Ostinata Mente: taking care of public space (Dialogue with urbanist Cristina Bianchetti and antropologist Massimo Bressan)
DRAMATURGY OF AN EMPTY SPACE / notes for an artistic cohabitation
The sixth edition of Periferico Festival “Ex Post” has been built as a whole performative action, created simultaneously by all people who chose to be part of it – directors, techinicians, artists, public. This action originates from the question:
what does it mean to re-popolate a public space?
We asked this question to: an orchestra, thirty mailmans, five mothers, two children, an illustrator, a theatre company, an urbanist, an antrophologist, an economist, a group of dancers, an engeneer, some musicians, a chorus, a video-maker, a performer, a psiconalist, a writer.
On the 24th and 25th may 2014 the re-opened Post Office welcomed the public equipped with a map and free to visit twelve artistic interventions across contemporary languages of theatre, dance, music and visual arts.
Each visitor was free to follow his own path through all installations, stopping to watch a performance, meeting a dancer during a pause and thus creating his own personal dramaturgy throughout the building, once again switched on by more than 50 artists working at the same time.
For this co-habitation, the building itself imposed to us its limits and its strong points: no electricity, bright open-spaces and dark holes, the heavy sound of frequent passing trains, a lot of dust and some traces of its former function.
To the same extenct, we left the artistic processes bare as the venue itself, we showed the staging mechanisms, we took the works of art out of the box to to be inhabited by the visitors.
Public, artists and technicians shared a unique experience: a graft of care in an abandoned public space.
All this brought in a good dose of hazards: we really hope that it was fruitful.
Sineglossa (IT), Matteo Gubellini (IT), Jaleti (GE), Fabio Fiandrini (IT), Orchestra Senza Spine (IT), Alberto Zino (IT), Carlo Maver (IT), Davide Fasulo (IT), Coro Improvviso (IT), Laura Gibertini (IT), Caterina Moroni e Federica Rocchi (IT), Melissa Iannace (IT), Amigdala (IT)