with Michela Battaglia and Stefano De Luigi
May 10 – June 2, 2019
Palazzo Ducale Genova
Babel is a visual meditation on the use of photography through two of the most relevant examples in today’s capitalistic society: billboard advertising (as seen in the Paris underground) and Daesh propaganda imagery. The project aims at combining two contrasting and apparently antithetic messages. It attempts a portrayal of the war which is being fought – by unprecedented means, on unprecedented fields – between a Western civilization, which is losing its identity, and an alleged Caliphate, which proposes a whole array of radical moral values, by distorting one of the world’s most widespread religions.
In 2003 the American writer and intellectual Susan Sontag wrote that: “shock has become a leading stimulus of consumption and source of value.” Since then, the tolerance threshold has continued to rise. On one hand, we have become insensitive to – if not greedy for – a certain level of pornography of pain. And a debasing representation of women. While power, money, and productivity have become the only solid values which are worth to pursue in life. On the other hand, there’s a promise of a sense of belonging, of redemption from solitude, anonymity and social exclusion.
In both cases, only appearances, degenerations.
Babel portrays our unconscious daily life, exposed to the constant abuse of a rainstorm of images that we cannot escape, from which there is no shelter.
We might as well stop running and open our eyes wide without fear.