La rue est à nous. Dal mondo dell’arte a Google street view (e ritorno)

Rivista di Estetica 77:59-76 (2021)
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periphery looks at you with hate. This phrase in red neon struck the visitors of Landscapes, an exhibition by Domenico Antonio Mancini in the Lia Rumma Gallery in Naples, in 2019. It was not addressed to the public but to the nineteenth-century pictorial views relocated in the last room of the exhibition, as if repainted by the immaterial vandalism of the colored light. The exhibition’s theme was the visibility of contemporary suburban environments, now accessible through Google street view visualizations. Mancini’s non-representational Landscapes are Google addresses, not aesthetically appreciable but pragmatically challenging: the visitor must type on a touch screen to access to the outskirts of Naples, Palermo, Catania, Rome and Milan. The words at the end of the exhibition almost literally replicated a black graffiti drawn on Palazzo Missori in Milan. Are these relocation and remediation just about artification? What happens when, browsing Google street view, I take a close look at that graffiti recalling the political protests during the streets the 1960s? The deictic transitability in space and time of the hypermediated image can activate a fortuitous narrative and an open interpretation by looking back on the present as if it were past. Even a digital landscape is a moral landscape like that of public art for Danto, with a «internal beauty» whose meaning is not already embodied in architectural and artistic media but accessible and shareable through our portable devices.

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Filippo Fimiani
Università degli Studi di Salerno


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