This Is Not the End

Un balletto di automobili a lu centru dellu munnu

Happening

15 cars, 15 CDs with audified seismograms from 15 seismic stations from all over the world

2009

This Is Not the End

Technical basics
The meeting place was Foligno, a city in Umbria, which calls itself “lu centru dellu munnu”, the centre of the world. Fifteen cars gather in an “area di emergenza” ready to perform an automotive ballet. Each car was previously given the name of a seismic station (from ADK = Adak, Alaska, to YSS = Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk, Russia) and equipped as follows: a sign with the abbreviation and photo of a station behind the windscreen, textile bands in the respective national colours on the antenna, and a CD with an audified seismogram from the station (all measurements were taken during the same time period). For the performance, the cars enter the area in a motorcade, turn on their CD players synchronously and subsequently drive in choreographed patterns: six pairs of cars, each pair of cars driving on one lane but in opposite directions, two cars with no preestablished choreography and one car rotating in the centre (SPA = Antarctica). The performance lasts fifteen minutes. All cars stop when the CD ends and then leave the area in a motorcade.

Artistic concept
The “aree di emergenza” are areas that the Italian government set up to be able to evacuate the population in the case of an earthquake. This Is Not the End turned these places of withdrawal into places of action. Can the danger of an earthquake be conceived and understood in a playful way? Can seismic movements be translated into a kind of dance, e. g., as a sort of “earthquake tarantella”? (The tarantella folk dance was a part of a medieval phenomena known as dancing mania, in which the dancer(s) “shook off” symptoms of disease etc.) Furthermore, what does the synchronisation of fifteen earthquake measurements sound like and can this be grasped as a composition?

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