Pas moi alludes to the dialectic of communication and incommunicability: although one cannot express herself/himself without making room for the Other, this very opening may bring about self-negation, or at least dependency from an external arbiter. While ensuring an antidote to narcissism, and thus granting an proof of the artist’s work and her/his very existence, the Other’s point of view defies identity, submits it to an estranging tension, the tension between self-disavowal and self-recognition (in and by the other). The sought-for end outcome, though, is equilibrium, a paradoxical dialogic monologue, or monologous dialogue (Beckett), aiming at capturing the core of the artist’s relational life. .A relation, then, of synergic estrangement: De Sanctis an Israel strike up an uncompromising cooperation; while fully keeping their identities, they share the same research border, as their works incorporate the techniques and media used for their realization. In so doing, they do accept, indeed they want, to generate unexpected, dysfunctional, and sometimes unstable, outcomes: the film released by a 16mm projector runs through a drawing-paper and strikes it, thus producing forms and sounds while the public’s shadows take multiples shapes on the walls…A double metamorphosis materializes on an improbable, inclined, wax-canvas, as a row-clay fish lapped by the high tide slowly melts and the image itself is filtered and altered by the waxed canvas surface…A wall- drawing may remember a mural, though it is in fact a very thin China drawing and the supporting surface was made silky, almost immaterial, by the artist’s treatment. Once again, then, an identity crisis is stressed: hardware and software, or means and ends, pierce through one another, thus certifying a radical relativity, or even the impossibility of differentiating, because of the reducibility of the real to its representation (or vice versa?). In the artists’ vision, this longstanding, scientific and philosophical, question is rather given a poetic answer, i.e. dealt with by their gesture’s freedom. In fact, poetry, including poetry of the Absurd (Pas Moi), attains the most cogent truths quite apart from logical or empirical support because of its ability to comprehend the incomprehensible, to put order into the chaos that frightens reason by the power of intuition. The crucial matter – these new talents say – is less explaining, or mastering, mystery, than showing its beauty and learning to coexist with.
10 March 2011
Marco De Sanctis