wood, metal, paint, pen
120 x 94 x 70cm
Collezione Angela e Tonino Buono
© Cultural Documents
The works in this series were made in the area of Filignano in Molise during research residencies which Jimmie Durham made exploring the potential of the location and geological resources of the area. Durham worked with wood from indigenous trees; gifted by the Esposito family, the noci (walnut) tree was felled in their orto at Case Carrese near Sant’Agapito, the pre-cut faggio and cerro (beech and oak) were felled in Filignano and donated by the Corpo Forestale dello Stato and the mahogany was donated by Leo Verrecchia. The work was carried out in the vecchia falegnameria in Filignano, where Durham worked with Jone Kvie and Max Ockborn.
Artist, poet and political activist Jimmie Durham (US, 1940) is known for his lyrical, at times Duchampian, ironic and ethical art. Jimmie Durham is a man whose talent is boundless, extending to the most diverse idioms, from drawing to writing, from unexpected assemblages to complex sculptures, from performance to video and architecture through to the thematic nucleus focussing on the narrative of a nation and on the links between political power and religious beliefs.
The works in the series were subsequently developed and presented at exhibitions with Fondazione Morra Greco in Naples and at MACRO Roma and have been acquired for the Collezione Angela e Tonino Buono, Venafro.
Excerpts from ‘IS THIS INTERESTING?’ by Jimmie Durham for MOUSSE magazine – Issue 42:
Is wood really a sentimental material? The art market has often dictated the substances with which artists should or should not work, and the interests they ought to address. Jimmie Durham has developed an artistic relationship with wood over decades, and he is ready to demonstrate just how noble and powerful the material can be, beyond any pre-set notions and constraints of a commercial nature. The tale starts at the dawn of time, moving on to the appearance of the first trees and their mammal companions, the Age of Trees and the Age of Humans. Since then great evergreen Sequoias, pistachio trees with multicolored fruit, hardy olive trees, Jacarandas offering diamond-hard wood, have all colonized the earth. Durham, arriving from his native America, has encountered an amazing variety of species over the years in Europe as well. The following story is a narrative in steps marked by European trees and those of other lands, described with a literary clarity that calls forth the aroma of their wood…
…An area of Italy southeast of Rome called Molise has forested hills with walnut, chestnut, oak, olive and apple wood. It is a poor, sparsely populated area which I’ve been visiting for the past three summers. Deirdre MacKenna, who lives part-time in Filignano there, gave me a large old walnut tree that had died. We decided to start an annual workshop with local wood, using vacant facilities and machinery from defunct woodworking shops and inviting artists from around Europe.
Waiting To Be Interrupted, an anthology of writings by Durham from 1993–2012, published by Mousse Publishing.
See also Kurimanzutto