“Across the Body” is a performance about body, drawing and the disappearing of artwork perceived as an object.
History of Arts tells us that, for a long time, drawing has not been seen as an autonomous form of art. Since drawing became an independent form of art, a drawn work of art, the drawer, in common thinking has been identified with the figure of an expert technician, who can reproduce reality in an image.
Vincenzo Fiore Marrese, Across the Body, performance, 2017. Photo by Linda Salvadori © Marrese
Nevertheless, for over a century art has moved away from this idea to turn its attention at first towards the sign and then to art itself. Therefore, what is drawing? Image, sign? And beyond traces, what is it in itself? And, above all, did we lose anything reducing images to signs and the whole process of drawing to an act of reflection on drawing itself? And is this loss, if there has been one, a purification or an impoverishment?
Across the body has the aim to be a device to create questions for the audience around the topics of drawings as reproduction, drawing meant as pure sign and drawing meant as a reflection of drawing itself, about the sense of drawing. The drawing is analyzed in relation with the body, which, across the gesture, is able to create the traces that can make images live.
Across the body is developed in a sheet of paper that lay down on the floor. The length of the paper can arrive until 20 metres (a metre and eighty of width) but it may change in relation with the space.
Vincenzo Fiore Marrese, Across the Body, performance, 2016. Photo by Alberto Frosini. © Marrese
The performer will move on the paper tracing signs and creating images, in relation with the movement of his body, to focus the relation between the trace and the gesture.
The charcoal leaves traces and the choice of using this material is because it’s possible to adopt it in many ways from woods previously charred form the performer himself, until specific sticks for drawing.
At the end of the performance, the performer slowly rolls up the long paper, in which the traces are marked and the images created, inspiring the audience to make reflection over the sense of drawing, removing the idol, as well as the artwork, and leaving up an open question.
The performance includes an original electronics composition conformed to the visual part, made with a series of elementary sounds, similar to the signs traced with the charcoal, and also some more structured signs, close to the images made on the paper.
Vincenzo Fiore Marrese, Musical composition for Across the Body (sample)