We live only once, it is said, and while we live we born and we die who knows how many times: what if Humans could die and born again, for the last time. A question of energies, of transformation, of form and content in perpetual movement, prolific of new connections and suggestions. A question of geographic and temporal disorientation, of a narrative short circuit. A question of life and death: nothing is as it seems. As in a game of unfinished references, the viewer is led in an itinerary without precise mapping, neither spatial nor temporal, and is free to govern, or not, his own suggestions with new awareness: in a dimension of reality in which everything happens for the first time, photography is often a palliative experience, an apparent and temporary remedy. In fact, to understand the work it is necessary to suspend one's own forms of pre-judgment and abandon oneself to that slight sense of indeterminacy: among those who are represented who works in which department? where are we exactly? Or rather: when are we exactly there?
As early as 1945 André Bazin sensed that at the base of the figurative arts there would be the idea of defending oneself against time, corrupting things and bodies, and in parallel the dream of overcoming death: "to artificially fix the carnal appearances of the being means to be take it away from the flow of duration: to bring it back to life". The result is a reproductive obsession that comes before any aesthetic need: before the expression of an artist comes "the psychological desire to replace the external world with its double [...], the instinct to save the being through the appearances”. Roland Barthes, about forty years later, adds: "In photography, therefore, reality and past coexist. In this sense photography - very real and in itself mortal - makes you live what has been and is no longer, immortalizing it. It has in itself, therefore, a strabic, insane condition, which is the natural, hallucinatory, iconic condition of photography: what has been is not here; it is here that which is no longer ".
Born about three years ago, AOSTABELLOSGUARDO is, in fact, a project about an artistic research that questions, to overcome it, the dualism life / death on the merit of the public hospital Beauregard of Aosta which hosts, at a distance of one floor from the other, two special departments, namely the Hospice, Residential Structure of Palliative Care, and Obstetrics and Gynecology, Complex Structure of Obstetrics and Gynecology: at a distance of a few meters a cycle opens and closes, whatever this may ever means. The experience of life is in itself confusing and generates unexpected forms of meaning: it is still the man who sooner or later defines. And in this sense AOSTABELLOSGUARDO helps us to define once more the perimeter of our thinking towards themes such as palliative care, pain therapy, up to those always actuals such life end and therapeutic self-determination, but also those of pregnancy, abortion, birth, assisted procreation, till the themes related to language and memory. The research dedicated to the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology takes the name of HYSTEROS, in the greek uterus, and together with the PALLIUM project, from the latin mantle, goes to compose the work. The two suggestions, uterus and mantle, are even confused to reverse the generated perception: the patient's care does not always correspond to his recovery, just as joy and pain do not always have a linear dynamic. As a result, three types of images were chosen: self-portraits of the operators, photographs of the environment and images from the author's family archive dating back to the eighties that is to say the period when the hospital was inaugurated, between 1984 and 1985. The design approach has deliberately worked towards the construction of a work that would analyze two specific departments of the Beauregard Hospital, place them in close relationship with each other and place them in close relationship with the author: we are institutions, all of us. The strength of the proposed planning lies in the direct comparison between the two contexts thanks to the aesthetic solutions and, in a political sense, aims to highlight the dimension of two specific departments of a public health service structure in constant evolution and always to be valued and protected in a logic of collective responsibility: to look is to change.