Viva Canova !

        Every time a new century dawns, a new Hellenistic Renaissance starts: it happened at the beginning of the 19th and of the 20th century and it will apparently also occur at the outset of the next century. The figures of the past era – busts of Lenin and Stalin – still appear in my neo-mythological scenery, but one day they will definitively moulder to dust

        Böcklin, in his days, sensualised the Hellenistic nostalgia of an entire era when he represented the God Pan in the midday shadow of an oak grove, or depicted sirens and tritons in the shallow bays of lagoons in the Mediterranean.

        But what he represented in disturbing colours, frightened by the impending demise, was expressed as the concept of ideal harmony a hundred years before by divine Canova, son of a grand age, in that calmest of all materials, marble.

        Today nature is preparing a new revenge for us, after having waited for the right moment. It is tired of the technological revolutionists, civilisation is vulnerable at the „biological  points“ of its intellect and the organic nature is waiting for the moment to attack the human world. It is tired of the „transformations“ of the 20th century, with the infection of Hellenism.

        Thank God !   

        An end to the pseudo prophets who promised to solve the problem of human happiness with revolutions and the suppression of nature.

        And you, Technique, take a rest; lay down for a while in the shadow of the green prairies of tradition.

         „Eternal youth“, think of the ageing of metal, of the aggressivity of plastic, of the fatigue of computers and of the flashiness of electric light.

         Instead of listening to techno rock in the light of laser beams, listen to the sound of the birds and enjoy the freshening warmth of the rising sun. Instead of listening to the throaty sound of the English language, listen to the music of Italian, to the sound of the chords of the locusts and cicadas and lulled to sleep, close your eyes simultaneously to the mysticism of the setting sun that wakes the tender warbler of the nightly dwellers, the crickets accompanied by the velvety flight of the bats.

        You probably thought nature had died?!

         No, Technique, it is as alive as it has never been before, but you are designated to send your dead ships into the lifeless cosmic vastness and leave the earth behind as a blooming wildlife sanctuary, as a grand botanical garden.     Are you listening, Technique? I am warning you: when the moment of your maturity is over, and this moment is getting close, you will rest the head of your iron machines tired of all the progress in the groves of the bucolic woods. And in the shade of the Hellenistic oak groves, in the shallow bays of the Mediterranean they will become rusty and will remind us of the patina of the bronze monuments of the ancient world of eternity.  

        You will be sent into the cosmos, where you will vegetate for the next century, the new Paradise, the new golden age of a new world exempt from machines that has found the way back to nature.

        The old-fashioned God Technique will be replaced by the new divinity Genetics, and in the biological century she will take revenge for the lost era.

        She will populate the woods and groves with centaurs, the caves and the sea with mermaids, she will create the reality of a new mythological world.

         What the poets dreamt about for centuries will come true: the ancient mythology created in the laboratories of the scientists and genetic engineers, the Canovas fo the future, will be reborn in figures like Minotaurs and Aphrodites!

        And you, Revolution, aren`t you tired of your cruel labours? Moderate your rabid rage, fold your bloody, hypocritical white wings and take a rest from the battles!

        Look at yourself, your body is covered with dirt, tiredness closes your eyelids over your eyes that are blindfolded by viciousness... Your cheeks are cavernous because of deprivation and your legs are broken because of leaps into the unknown. Your clothes are ragged through years fo fighting; your back is crooked through laborious, useless work. Your teeth are worn-out because of coarse nutrition; your ribs stand out through hunger. Your thoughts have lost their vigour and your appeal its intensity. Your hatred does not make any sense and your cruelty lacks a target...

        You should also lie down in the middle of fragrant wild flowers, observe the flight of the butterflies, get used to the flies and worms on your repugnant, dying, decomposing body!

        You, who were able to kill and to destroy, to deny and to overthrow, to lie and to hate, to do harm and to mutilate, you should finally find the courage to abandon th resurrection world tired of your cruel, bony, traitorous embrace!

        Go away, viperfish, get into the shade!

        And you, Aesthetics of avant-garde, who were selfishly addicted to your agonising mistress, like her you aimed to destroy tradition and with her you sang of the murder of nature. You should also sit down for a while in the ruins of your famous achievements, rest from hard, doubtful work.

        Wipe the sweat from your brow with your brawny, acrylic covered hand; ventilate your dirty, proletarian clothes, the stigma of your hysterical attacks.

        Aren`t you tired of breathing the dust and pollution of your exhausting metropolis, the toxic steams of your factory studios? Breathe the breeze of the sea bays; fill your eyes with Mediterranean light, with the blueness of the ocean, the azure of the remote cliffs and clouds. Let your eyes have a rest from the dirt of your fabrics and the corruption of your sculptures, from the monotony of your abstraction, the pointlessness of the happenings and the extent of the installations...

        Clean your lungs, clear your views, and enjoy the vastness!

        Can`t you see that you will be replaced, the same as your two sisters who will die of senility, by a new subtile being in airy clothes risen out of oblivion.

        Her name is Tradition. When she walks she mimics the flow of the waves, her breath resembles a fresh breeze, her hair is the same as sea foam, and on her forehead she wears the wisedom of centuries.


        Will you not be liberated, to the America of the 21st century, to the Promised Land that attracts uneasy souls?

        Won`t you give birth to new Morosovs, Schtschukins and Mamontovs that attract uneasy souls?

        Won`t you create a new Dhiagilev that gives Europe its grand tradition back, which it has lost carelessly with the ardour of Modernism, and won`t you create a new monarch that will lead the lost child back to the European family?!

        Tired of revolutions and cataclysm, of dictatorship and slavery, you have celebrated the revival of tradition since you were the first to turn awa from her earlier.

        The old myths, that were innate to the 20th century, have survived.

        The time has come for new ones that are as old as the civilisation and as wise as the evolution that has given birth to all of us.



                                                                                                                                Genia Chef, Rome – Sorrento,  1995