Alfredo Pirri/ Miroslaw Balka
Fondazione Volume!
Istituto Polacco di Cultura
Rome, Krakow, 2005


The exhibition is part of a larger project curated by Anna Maria Nassisi called Vis à Vis, which compares Polish and Italian artists. The project also offers a panorama of the artistic scene of the two countries, through talks.


What I think makes my educational experience closer to that of Miroslaw, this concerns a common generational element: a mixture of nostalgia and abandonment. The artists of my generation (not just “visual” artists but every kind of artist) we came out of fast and unpredictable changes with few certainties on future prospects but with a great attraction towards art and the idea that art could survive and act also in the social field. Although I don’t feel I can say that art should open political perspectives. Ultimately I could say that these changes and the open problems my generation has lived and continues to live in, have led me to make doubt prevail over certainty. Dubt is now an essential method of my work and it has slowly been enriched by trust in the image. Dubt has taken on the characteristics of the form. This aspect is central. I don’t think that art should close itself in itself, originating a colorful world of shapes and colors that are pleased with his existence. Although I am led to believe that in a successful form, in the one that moves us, here there is a general value.

The theory of the absence of history is completely foreign to my education. Proclaiming the end of the story, Fukuyama threw words into the wind, because the story existed, exists and will exist. Some theories are artificially constructed, they do not start from human experience, they are rather tied to theoretical premises, completely foreign to me. Man is born and dies locally. In his Wasteland Thomas Elliot claims that the world will not end at all with a giant explosion or due to a global catastrophe, but with a groan of pain. And this moan is a local moan as the human experience is local. I believe that the task of art is to draw attention to the intimacy, to the space of the human existence. So we should try to activate the channels of human sensibility, because this sensibility will allow us to take memory and its presence in history.