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Le Cirque. About the human nature

Men and women of the circus are a metaphor of humanity, quite an heterogeneous one, whose variety also includes extreme cases, well diversified compared to the stereotypes imposed by the consumerism of our society. In the vision to which Mauro Moriconi gives substance to, through the project "Le Cirque", this condition emerges immediately: the complexity of the human being, his legitimacy to autonomously define the measure of his position in the world, and especially his ability to find tools and strategies of survival (or rather 'existence') in any scenario, under the rules of any change. Given this premise, the representation of artists, rather than ordinary citizens, assumes a specific meaning. Relatively speaking, and cutting off at their source all the more or less scholarly citations of decadent and holographic atmospheres surrounding the universe of the circus, I believe that Moriconi’s predilection for the chosen subjects has to do precisely with this double identity. They are artists (and therefore somehow ambiguous compared to the usual assessments on need), but in a technical and somehow handcrafted variation of their talent. Therefore they lend themselves to narrating in a self-questioning approach that includes, at the same level, the normal and the exceptional. The clown, the fire-eater, the tightrope walker, the fat lady and the other characters are, according to a poetics of representation, which is very congenial to Mauro and wisely practiced in his research, subjected to a literary form of alienation that immerses them in a brand new perception of reality. In the scenarios of industrial archeology, that appear out of context and slightly lost, the artists of the circus seem ready to continue acting according to their own codes. Their image, however, is completely transformed by the altering view given by the contrast, and a heroic profile emerges, as if they were all survivors, or pioneers, in a time period impossible to define. The future, whether utopian or dystopian, is always out of synch with what we recognize as the present, so that by realizing itself it brings its own irrevocable cancellation. In that sense, "Le Cirque" could also take place in the past and it is not accidental that the images are so full of a sense of history stratified among the ruins of the industrious human activities.  The aim of this semantic dislocation of characters and scenarios is, according to Mauro, a declaration of non-judgmental doubt about the human condition and its potential. With his visions that coagulate in lines and colors on an aluminum medium, Moriconi, himself faithful to the complex nature that describes him as an artist struggling with diverse languages, expresses another poetic gesture. The re-appropriation of that narrative universe, through the mark and the technique of engraving, has the power to return the sense of verticality as opposed to the horizontality of identification: it is as if the artist outlines a sub-text through which he asserts his power to speak about the world, but that grants the world, and the viewer, the duty of judgment and action.

Pietro Gaglianò

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