Video 4´44″ – 2021
In an effort to bring the ideals of Futurism into everyday life and transform Italian society, Filippo Marinetti launched the Manifesto of Futurist Cooking in 1930. One of the most controversial points in the text is its call to eliminate pasta from the Italian diet. Attributing negative effects to those who consume it, such as heaviness and drowsiness, the Manifesto claims to replace it with rice.
Although the Manifesto points to new possibilities of bringing the avant-garde to the kitchen, the fight against pasta also responds to a moment of crisis and to Marinetti’s intentions to have an important place in the cultural revolution of fascism. Given a drop in wheat production at that time, Mussolini´s government sought to promote rice cultivation while trying to reduce imports of this grain. In this context, Marinetti looked to establish rice as a national symbol, not only highlighting its nutritional properties but also the need to proudly consume Italian products, calling for the fight against foreign-philia.
Although Marinetti’s relationship with fascism was ambivalent, the attempt to align Futurism with the regime through this gesture accounts for the intricate relationships between art and politics.
After Marinetti, is a comment on this point of the Manifesto of Futuristic Cooking. The video records the attempt to place as many grains of rice on top of each other until the construction finally collapses.
Through this action I seek to show the complicated operations that must be carried out to build a structure in which a disruptive gesture from art can be coupled with the ideas of a totalitarian regime.
The fragility of the column makes it unsustainable, but its ruins remain and remind us of the possibilities that apparently opposing ideologies can converge in new configurations.