Following the Choral Art Manifesto by artist and scientist Luigi Pagliarini published on Arshake on June 25, 2020, today Arshake presents the first of two conversations with Giorgio Cipolletta where he talks about the backstage and the intention of his project his latest project #restaCorale (#stayChoral), realised with one hundred and fifty young artists during the lockdown.
Giorgio Cipolletta: What prompted you to choose this “artistic expression”?
Luigi Pagliarini: In emotional terms, the idea of creating a Choral Art originates in the strong stimulus resulting from the 2020 quarantine which, by locking us up and separating us, deprived us of the most classic of human needs – sociality.
In artistic terms, I guess, it’s most likely the product of an unconscious reworking of my strong past experiences in both the Eventualist  and net.art  field, and from studying and being passionately interested in Memetics  materialising at the same time the overcoming. Besides, in my writings (Collaborative Intelligence ) and in my past works (Parallel Relational Universe , Pagliarini Code ),as well as in more recent ones such as “Sensory Thought“, I had already expressed clearly in linguistic terms what my or, rather, our needs are: to create a new vision of the world and the world of art. An ecosystem synergy is needed in all areas of knowledge – there is no other way.
Can you explain in detail how you collected materials?
It’s all very simple and, at the same time, very complex, which is why I’ll try to explain it in order and clearly. I structured the work into six projects by requesting specific action-related material from my classes. Each student was then allowed to submit a single proposal or more for each specific request. The students on the three-year degree programme had 5 projects consisting of six simple actions, while the students on the two-year course had a single project divided into two complex actions. I called the whole project #stayChorale with the subtitle Greetings from a world in captivity and divided the execution into 7 acts (#stayTranscendent, #stayatHome, #staySafe, #stayCreative, #stayHuman, #stayYourself, #stayTuned).
Together with the twenty students of the biennium’s Body Semiology class, the single project took place in three specific moments, carried out on a single board – a white A4 sheet of paper – where students were asked to represent A) their own face; B) their own body; C) a single gesture/signature. They were required to include revealing features indicating what they were experiencing at that exact moment of lockdown and social segregation. Their action is called: #stayTranscendent: Animation in 12 hand-drawn boards. To date it is the first project to be completely finished. 
With the Theory of Perception and Psychology of Form classes, part of the three-year BA programme, with approximately 130 students, we organised five actions  (i.e. Drawings, Animations, Photographs, Videos, etc.). In addition, for each class there was an additional action/documentation consisting of one of the following: one or more audio recordings of their actions or of their home environment; the preparatory gestures which the actions required; or the sound of the artistic gesture itself as in, for example, drawing. These recordings were designed to acoustically characterise the presence of the individual artist/designer at the exact moment when, during the editing phase, their creations would appear. 
How did you structure the work behind the scenes?
Having completed the work, which I could only describe as monumental, of coordinating the artists and collecting materials, we were able to begin the part relating to the actual implementation of the entire art project. For this stage I preferred using professional figures. I surrounded myself with an unconventional video-designer, Emmanuel Nervegna , who has a strong research and artistic aesthetic sense; a small group of professional musicians who could contribute with ad-hoc compositions; and two sound designers who could help in a professional manner with the fusion of the sounds sampled by the students with the compositions written by the musicians. Among these, there were present friends , like Fabio Perletta  (in the design scheme there were also Angelo Olivieri , Fabrizio Mandolin i, Paolo Russo  and others) and a past friend, Andrea Gabriele, a composer who no longer is with us. This was also meant to stress that the concept of chorality and harmony do not belong exclusively to the present but literally transcend time by diving exclusively into an abstract and eternal space. As far as my contribution is concerned, which remains just this, besides coordinating the whole enterprise – and, in this regard, it’s essential to note the fundamental role played by the Macerata Fine Arts Academy represented by the director Rossella Ghezzi – I tried to focus my energies exclusively on the graphic and artistic aspects of the work in a repeated and intense exchange of creative ideas with Emmanuel, all achieved in an almost virtual editing room (we also worked remotely). The number of people involved in this operation, however, is much greater and for a more exhaustive list of the artists and creative team who have taken part in the six works, I refer you to the release of the last act of this choral composition.
Could you tell us what you think is innovative about this project?
It wasn’t a new idea, I had been working on it since the start of the millennium. The 2006 paper, Collaborative Intelligence  is proof of this. After all, I wasn’t inexperienced in terms of practical skills because I had already designed and executed my first project in this way. I called it URP (Universi Relazionali Paralleli , Parallel Relational Universes) and created Do ut Des  in 2014 for a collective Contemporary Art exhibition. The big, perhaps the biggest, differences between my first experiment and the one performed during lockdown are in the numbers, the lack of physicality during the choral performance and the greater sensitivity and awareness with which I approached #stayChoral.
In completely virtual circumstances, such as the one I encountered between March and May 2020, [what is innovative is] the mediation work on motivation, adaptive regulations, executive methods within everyone’s reach, seriousness and resilience towards delivery times and, above all, from the point of view of energy – neither simple nor obvious. In any case, there’s no room to describe them here.
Conversely, it seems to me that it is essential to mention intelligent use during online operational feedback sessions that, perhaps more than anything else, turn a collective work into a choral work. Methodologically, during the multiple meeting sessions with the students, after having explained to them what to do, I started to publicly display the works that came to me as I received them in the class itself. I believe that this aspect, however trivial it may seem, is of fundamental importance because if, on the one hand, it creates positive stimuli and energy, on the other hand, it constantly redefines the margins of potential possible expression, creative space and personality or, if you like, personalisation of one’s intervention. In short, the immediate and direct comparison with others turns a collective graphic work into a real Choral Work.
(…to be continued…)
See Lombardo S. (1987) The Eventualist Theory. Rivista di Psicologia dell’Arte (RPA), no. 14-15.
See Mirolla M., Aloia L., Underground Eventualist. Aesthetic research in Italy 1972-2019″, LAP Ed., Rome, 2020.
 Vuk Ćosić, Very Cyber Indeed, 1995. http://www.ljudmila.org/~vuk/
 Richard Dawkins, The Selfish Gene, Oxford: Oxford University Press, Oxford, 1976.
 Luigi Pagliarini, Collaborative Intelligence, Beta Version 1.0, Digicult Issue 14, 2006
 Luigi Pagliarini, Parallel Relational Universes: project for a relational modularity. In Rivista di Psicologia dell’Arte, Nuova Serie, Year XXXV, n° 25, December 2014. Pp. 55-64.
 Luigi Pagliarini L., Pagliarini Code. In Rivista di Psicologia dell’Arte, Nuova Serie, Year XXXIX, n° 29, December 2018. Pp. 33-40
 Luigi Pagliarini, Sensory Thought. In Biomega Multiverso, edited by B. Zanelli and C. Veneziano, Pp. 92-109, NERO Publication. February 2020
 Conception and Artistic Direction: Luigi Pagliarini; Video Composition: Emmanuel Nervegna; Music Score: Andrea Gabriele; Sound Design: Fabio Perletta; Art Works and Environmental Sounds: Ado Brandimarte, Alessia Galassi, Allegra Donati, Anthony Bufali, Antonia Lombardi, Chan Yang, Fabio Casaccia, Francesco Moriconi, Gaia Rosita Cecere, Giorgia Mascitti, Huang Yan, Jacopo Pinelli, Leonardo Gironacci, Lisa Maria Ciccalé, Luna Hoei Cini, Maria Letizia Paiato, Michela Oddis, Milica Jankovic, Noemi Agosti and Viviana Tavani.
1 #stayHome: Photographs of windows showing a glimpse of the world assigned to each student; 2 #staySafe: Photographs, selfies, of students’ faces with a personal interpretation of the face mask, against a white background; 3 #stayCreative: Photographs of shadows that were present or created within students’ domestic walls to be projected on an A4 sheet of paper;4 #stayHuman: A micro-video (min. 1 – max. 3 seconds) on a white background in which the world is greeted with one hand (exceptionally two); 5 #stayYourself: An animation (consisting of 6, 12 or 18 frames) drawn by hand on a white A4 sheet of paper, signed by the student and animated with a chosen creative gesture.
 This project is called: #stayTuned: Environment Sampling of different durations, from 10 to 60 seconds.
 Luigi Pagliarini, Collaborative Intelligence, Beta Version 1.0 Digicult Issue 14, 2006 (http://digicult.it/it/digimag/issue-003/italiano-intelligenza-collaborativa-beta-version-1-0/)
 Luigi Pagliarini, Parallel Relational Universes: project for a relational modularity. in Rivista di Piscologia dell’arte, N. S., year XXXII, n. 25, 2014. (https://www.alfabeta2.it/2015/08/09/luigi-pagliarini-ferrara/)
 Contemporary Art Collective Do ut Des, curated by A. Tolve with E. Bellantoni, D. Kadirbeyoglu, and Bianco-Valente, 5 November 2014 – 5 February 2015. Convent of San Patrignano, Collecorvino. Catalogue SET Ed. ISBN: 978-88-908700-1-9).
Authors: Luigi Pagliarini Ferrara, Andrea Gabriele, Fabio Perletta, Emmanuel Nervegna, Ado Brandimarte, Alessia Galassi, Allegra Donati, Anthony Bufali, Antonella Lombardi, Chan Yang, Fabio Casaccia, Francesco Moriconi, Gaia Cecere, Giorgia D. Mascitti, Yan Huang, Iacopo Pinelli, Leonardo Gironacci, LiSa Ciccalè, LunaHoei Cini, Maria Letizia Paiato, Michela Oddis, Milica Jankovic, Noemi Nema Agosti, Viviana Tavani, Andrea Barbara Romita, Alessandro Tombari, Alice Giangolini, Anita Gashi, Giacomo Vitturini, Grazia Scirocco, Jiang Yiqi, Lisa Pesaresi, Lorenzo Tombari, Monica Timperi, Pietro Sabbatini, Raffaella Pierdo, Simona Giustizieri, Agnese Paolucci, Alberto Catenacci, Alberto Mircoli, Aleksandra Ranxha, Alessia Albanesi, Andrelly Rodrigues, Angelica Pini, Annarita Talacchia, Asya Fiorini, Benedetta Corvatta, Bizyte Skaiste, Cameli Ilaria, Caterina Braca, Caterina Ficcadenti, Caterina Pellegrini, Cava Rebecca, Claudio_Baglioni, Elisa Maurizi, Elisa Paolini, Fabiola Tacchi, Fatmira Visha, Favia Carolina Claudia, Federica Di Odoardo, Federica Di Rocco, Federica Emili, Federico Foresi, Federico Pallotta, Filippo Traini, Francesca Croce, Francesca Ottaviani, Francesco Bellomo, Gabriela Di Biase, Gaia Macrì, Giacomo Cappella, Giada Farabolini, Giada Pantoli, Giordano Capriotti, Giorgia Ricci, Giorgia Speziale, Giovanni Aiardo Esposito, Crocetti Giulia, Grazia Scirocco, Greta Borgognoni, Greta Lamelza, Hristina Ganeva, Ilaria Formica, Irene Longo, Jennifer Pelucchini, Caterina Jesi, Jehoshua Pigliapoco, Leonardo Forconi, Linda Lovreglio, Lorenzo Siciliano, Lucia Giacomucci, Lucia Zampaloni, Lucrezia Marcellitti, Lucrezia Ruggeri, Maria Francesca Biasella, Margherita Marcelletti, Maria Luce Bittoni, Mariia Basic, Marina Di Sante, Marta Daverio, Martina Crisostomi, Matilde Tappatà, Matteo Stizza, Melissa Stizza, Michela Deluca, Michele Barone, Nadia Carboni, Natalia Piccinini, Nicola De Maio, Noemi Amatucci, Paola Belviso, Elisa Paolini, Putrika Rossetti, Rebecca Di Fabio, Rebecca Rossi, Riccardo Mosconi, Sara Salandra, Sara Siniscalchi, Serena Maccarone, Sofia Verdolini, Sophia Ruggeri, Stefano Giampieri, Stefano Tomassetti.
images: (cover 1) Luigi Pagliarini, «#restaTrascendente», 2020 (2) Luigi Pagliarini, #restaCreativo.Prove preliminari di video composizione (a cura di L. Pagliarini e F. Perletta), 2020 (3) Luigi Pagliarini, «Making of #restacorale», 2020