A Poetics of Care: Slowness, Ethics and Enchantment in Gianikian & Ricci Lucchi’s Oeuvre

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Maintaining that Angela Ricci Lucchi and Yervant Gianikian have a privileged relationship to history may sound quite predictable. Similarly, describing their artistic effort as that of archaeologists, historians, or entomologists is a delicate move: for on the one hand, their famous “Non, Non, Non” claim expresses their basic refusal of any sort of constraining etiquettes, while on the other hand their work still continues to be labeled in a number of ways, thereby demonstrating the impossibility to identify an ultimate footing that synthesizes the fascinating complexity of their oeuvre.

Trying to locate my argument outside such rhetoric, what I wish to propose is not an alternative or further reading of Angela Ricci Lucchi and Yervant Gianikian’s artistic trajectory, but rather an attempt to imagine the philosophy innervating their work and to observe the gestures informed by it. From this point, my review of their films and video installations does not aim to provide a counter-description opposed to the several detailed accounts to which I am indebted, but to complement them by seeing these works as the crystallization of a specific way of conceiving time—a way that is apt to restitute the past, inhabit the present and look at the future. Their work employs a conception of temporality that transcends the diegesis, and which I believe cannot be solely described in terms of a feature typical of slow cinema. Conversely, I shall contend that this approach to temporality represents the most immediately recognizable—but at the same time, the densest aspect—of a very peculiar poetics that is merely the audio-visual output of a wider creative process and of a broader, personal and very concrete relationship with the world.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)28-37
Number of pages9
JournalFound Footage Magazine
Issue numberSpring
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2017

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