Against Parmenides

curated by Ivan Quaroni
ABC-ARTE Srl, 2014
Bilingual edition - Ita/Eng
Against Parmenides: curated by Ivan Quaroni
Publisher: ABC-ARTE srl
Dimensions: 21 x 21 cm , 8 1/4 x 8 1/4
Pages: 60
ISBN: 9788895618029
€ 15.00


Parmenides, the founder of the school of Elea, thought that the motility and iridescence of the forms, which correspond to the volatility of human thoughts and moods, were nothing more but illusions of the physical world. Parmenides was sure that the fallacious impression of movement perceived by the senses strongly contrasted with the essence of reality, which he compared to a perfect sphere, static and equal in every part, and then finished and concluded.

According to the Greek philosopher, true knowledge was not based on senses, but on reason, on logical thinking, which could not admit the simultaneous coexistence of being and non-being, and thus the transformations of things into something else through an apparent movement of the forms. Parmenides' theory was in opposition to the thought of Heraclitus, which was based entirely on the sense experience, and to Democrito's atomism, whichsupposes that everything in the universe is either moving atoms or voids.

The prevailing thought of the contemporary world is light years away from the ideas of Parmenides and it is largely rooted on the sense experience of both analogical and virtual nature.

All contemporary art, or at least most of it, can be described as a theory of attempts to interpret the external reality, in its political, cultural, social and anthropological meanings. It is, ultimately, a practice closely linked to the perception of change, especially because we live in a time characterized by a rapid mobility of social and political structures, of technologies, of behavioral habits.

What the sociologist Zygmunt Bauman calls liquid modernity - opposed to the solid one, typical of industrial development - is a society characterized by an unprecedented acceleration of the transformations, which produce a state of permanent instability and uncertainty. With Bauman, Parmenides' illusory motion takes on the tragically concrete features of globalization and consumerism, of the rapid obsolescence of productive and technological systems, that leads to the dismantling of the certainties and the formation of a state of widespread fear.

The liquid fear makes the artists think , perhaps indirectly, of the phenomena of variation. It makes them wonder about the unstable nature of reality, seen as the field of action and proof of current speculation.

Francesca Schgor, Agostino Bergamaschi and Andrea Bruschi, each with a personal approach, deal with the topic of the perceived variability of images, of the motion of shapes and the resulting cognitive adaptation. They talk about these themes in works that range from sculpture to installation, from painting to photography.

These three artists represent, also by birth, the Y Generation, the one of Millenials or Echo Boomers born between the 80's and the early 00's when iquid modernity was at its peak. It is a generation that grew symmetrically with the expanding mass of instant communication (internet, mobile phones, social networks). A generation that, almost from necessity, was nourished, and also swept awayd, by the constant flow of information of the digital era.




Against Parmenides, by Ivan Quaroni


Andrea Bruschi


Francesca Schgor