A solo exhibit of works by Tomaso Binga is being inaugurated at Salerno’s Museo dello Sbarco. The artist has been experimenting constantly with art’s different idioms since the 1970s. Writing, painting, drawing and performance have been interpreted with irony and ethical tension while invariably paying close attention to the contradictions and tensions present in contemporary history. PER GLI INVOLONTARI DI GUERRA [FOR THE INVOLUNTARY COMBATANTS], the exhibit-installation curated by Antonello Tolve and Stefania Zuliani created for the halls and – more specifically – with the content of the Museo dello Sbarco and Salerno Capitale. The exhibit effectively documents an inspiration of condemnation as well as the poetic quality of the works by Tomaso Binga. Outfitting is built completely around the profound value of writing – used simultaneously as text and image – and proposes an intervention that is as poetic as it is corrosive.
PER GLI INVOLONTARI DI GUERRA actually expresses the intention of a critique. If on the one hand, it is linked to the yearlong artistic-epistolary work called ti scrivo solo la domenica [I only write to you on Sundays] because Sunday «is the only day of the week with a feminine pronoun» or to the electronic confessor in 1989, on the other hand it resumes and renovates Riflessioni a puntate [Considerations in episodes], the work begun in 1991 during the Gulf War that lasted an entire year. This is a particularly significant work due to its ability to involve the public (a postcard was sent every month to 280 people throughout the world) as well as for its ability to read and rewrite the present. Its lacerations find new and urgent timeliness in this historical context which is unfortunately still marked by conflicts.
The project’s twelfth postcard is dedicated to the involuntary combatants, a sort of an armistice of a hatchet job (Binga), a moment in which «the explosive force of poetic/performative writing» becomes «an epistolary-audio event of social condemnation» as can be confirmed by this original poetic performance of Per gli involontari di guerra, accompanied by the musical band I Pinco Pallini – Mariano Cuofano (voice and guitar), Mimmo Laurenza (bass), Michele Vassallo (saxophone and keyboard) and Serafina Perrotta (drums).
This is the first solo exhibit the artist has held in her hometown and the presentation of the book Tomaso Binga. Scritture viventi [Tomaso Binga. Living written works] is scheduled during its inauguration. The book was edited by Antonello Tolve and Stefania Zuliani and published by Plectica Publishing (Salerno, 2014). (from the press release)
«Tomaso Binga, Per gli involontari di Guerra», show-installation curated by Antonello Tolve and Stefania Zuliani, Museo dello Sbarco, Salerno (Italy), 27.09 – 01.12.2014 (the project is realised by Fondazione Menna in in collaboration with Museo dello Sbarco)
TOMASO BINGA (registered as Bianca Pucciarelli Menna at the Civil Registry Office) was born in Salerno in 1931. She lives and works in Rome. She chose a man’s name as pseudonym in order to contest the privileges of the man’s world with a dose of irony and disconcertment. Tomaso Binga has been a main player on the audio-visual research and experimental circuits for over fifty years and is one of the most unique artists on the international poetry and arts scene. She has taught Teoria e Metodo dei Mass Media (Mass Media Theory and Method) at the Fine Arts Academy in Frosinone. As an active organizer of cultural events, she has been the director of Rome’s Lavatoio Contumaciale since 1974 and has held the position of Vice-President of the Filiberto Menna Foundation in Salerno since 1992. Among her countless participations in exhibitions, events and festivals throughout Italy and abroad, we would like to mention: Materializzazione del linguaggio, (Venice Biennale 1978), 14th São Paulo do Brasil Biennale 1981, XI Quadriennale (Rome 1986), Poesia Totale (Mantua 1998), Polysonneries d’Art Vivant (Festival International, Lyon 1999), Art Media (7th International Convention, Salerno 1999), Bunker Poetico (Venice Biennale 2001), Autoritratto di un matrimonio (MLAC, Rome 2005), La Scrittura ( J. Klemm Foundation , Buenos Aires 2006), Viaggio nella parola (La Spezia 2007), Art Action (6th International Festival, Modena 2008), La Parola mostra il suo Corpo (Museo Accattino, Ivrea 2008), Artissima-Back To The Future (Turin 2011), Scritture viventi (Macerata 2013), Viaggio al termine della parola (Salerno 2014). Some of her published works include: E non uscire di casa, (preface by G. Cortenova, Nuova Foglio Publishing, Macerata, 1977), Abbecedario (Magma Publishing, Rome 1977), INdovina cos’È (preface by C. Milanese, Hetea Publishing, Alatri 1987), Sono stanca a più non posso (Rossi & Spera Publishing, Rome 1987), Rimerotiche (preface by L. Wertmuller, Gradiva Publishing, Rome 1992), Vorrei essere un vigile urbano (preface by A. Lora Totino, Sala Publishing, Pescara 1995), Autori-tratto a … scatto (preface by M.-C. Vettraino- Soulard, Le Impronte degli uccelli, Rome 2000) and Valore Vaginale (preface by G. Dorfles, Tracce Publishing, Pescara 2009).
Her work can be found in many public and private collections throughout Europe and across the world. Over the many years she has dedicated to her art, Binga has received numerous awards and her enormous artistic output has been documented in prestigious museums and festivals. She has also been published in many poetry collections and art books such as: L’Arte Moderna (edited by G. Dorfles and F. Menna, Fabbri Publishing, Milan 1977), Sine Aesthetica Sinestetica (edited by L. Pignotti, Empiria Publishing, Rome 1990), Letteratura Italiana del 900 (SEI Publishing, Turin 1997), Art Action (edited by R. Martel, Éditions Intervention, Québec 1998), Storia dell’arte italiana del ‘900 (edited by G. Di Genova, Bora Publishing, Bologna 2000), L’Arte del novecento dall’Espressionismo al Multimediale (edited by L. Vinca Masini, Giunti and Gruppo L’Espresso Publishing, Rome 2003), La Voce in Movimento (edited by G. Fontana, Harta Performing and Momo 2003), La Pittura Napoletana del ‘900 (edited by M. A. Picone, Di Mauro Publishing, Sorrento 2005), Il Suono e Le Parole (edited by A. Malinconico, Marcus Publishing, Naples 2006), La Voce Regina (Polipoesia, edited by E. Minarelli, Manni Publishing, Lecce 2006), Poesia a Comizio (edited by M. Carlino and F. Muzzioli, Empiria Publishing, Rome 2008) and Rosso da Camera, parola carnale parola sensuale (edited by L. Leone, Giulio Perrone Publishing, Rome 2012).
(cover) Giochi minati, 1960, watercolor, tempera and chine on mille paper, cm 14×9, Courtesy Tomaso Binga Archive (Rome) and Fondazione Filiberto Menna (Salerno/Rome) (1) Lettera A, 1976, da Alfabetiere murale, cm 30×40, courtesy Tomaso Binga Archive (Rome) and Fondazione Filiberto Menna (Salerno/Rome) (2) Paesaggi di Parole n. 2, 1991, collage su carta, 35x50cm, Tomaso Binga Archive (Rome) and Fondazione Filiberto Menna (Salerno/Roma).