In everyday language the term “nature” and “ outside” often coincide; all that is outside of us belongs to an untamed naturalness, which contrasts with a clean, civilised naturalness of which we are the guardians. For this, there is a barrier between us and the outside, which protects us and places us outside of the environment made up of natural components and which are thus subject to our control. Only recently has man ceased to consider himself a guardian of any rights regarding nature, and he no longer feels himself authorised to exercise the right to pre-emption. Thus the move towards acceptance made by the democracy of technical languages is confirmed. These languages have always exploited the contribution of amateurs who are closer to art’s enthusiasm than to scientific rigour. They are in perfect and secret symbiosis with the animals.
The Paliano convention Uccelli / Birds from May 11th to 12th in 1996 was designed to unite various special characteristics, all of which attempt to listen attentively to the marvellous examples of equilibrium which underpin nature. Birds tries to determine a learning that does not give pride of place to the centrality of man within creation. In this way the look we bestow on all that surrounds us resembles the original condition, similar to the one which the artist encounters when there is a work to begin. Birds tries to rediscover a migratory condition, one of surprise and welcome towards creation, whose flight is the accepted practice in artistic procedure, where science and aesthetics are united in the search for domains to unite in new ways and for truer and more natural models.
After the more concrete exploitation of birds ( food, transport ), there comes the search for a deeper understanding of their symbolic importance ( for example the plumage ) or the existential importance ( like migration ) offered by these animals.
Apart from the fascination which these birds arouse it is necessary to understand that they conjugate various fundamental aspects of human research: with flight we associate physics and geography, with their song music, with plumage aesthetics, and with their behaviour ethology. All these aspects were fused in animistic learning, for this reason birds have often been used as totems. After the conception of nature as the exclusive private property of Man, and following the urgent cry for help from the field of ecology, our approach to nature has changed radically.
Participants: Herbert Brandl, Matt Collishaw, Mark Dion, Jimmie Durham, Carsten Holler, Fabrice Hybert, Koo Jeong – A, Eva Marisaldi, Rudi Molacek, Vettor Pisani, Rosemarie Trockel, Giuseppe Bogliani, Jean Boivin, Claudio Carere, Christine Jackson, Fulco Pratesi, Rupert Sheldrake, Enzo Tiezzi