by Rudi Punzo
The artwork will look like a tidal leftover, poetical drifts ashored from an hypothetical big tide wave: In the nervous system, a synapse is a structure that permits a neuron (or nerve cell) to pass an electrical or chemical signal to another neuron, thus allowing the exchange of information, the communication between cells; in this case the cells represent a sort of sentinels, releasing their signal that everything is working smoothly, that the Sun still follows its course and is still giving its healthy energy to the Earth.
I like the idea of representing this function through a huge land artwork, using only natural and recyclable materials, suggesting the idea of fostering an exchange of communication between us – namely the visitors as the passers-by – and Nature itself, personified by humming insects, trees, small animals, a hill, a lawn with all its micro world of inhabitants.
Carrying on the metaphor of the brain synapse, the electrical – or chemical – signal is represented by the pulsing, rhythmic sound released by the electronic device hidden inside the nucleus of the Cell body
. Each one of the Dendritic branches
will be connected to the corresponding branch of the next nearby Neuron thanks to Axons
(made of natural cord), thus connecting the elements of the installation into a grid, a net of Neurons, a Connecting Tissue. Like their homologous natural bodies they will vibrate, gently oscillating in the wind, suspended and secured to the ground, surrounding trees and buildings.
Imagine human brain neurons magnified to the size of a table (Fig.1) and the shape of an Ophiura (brittle star
), the body made by split bamboo sticks bent in three circles (sphere) and the serpent-like arms by simply bent sticks tied with thin natural cord (hemp). The end of each arm (5 to 7 per each structure) are connected to other 'neurons' by thicker natural cord (8 mm. thick) so to form a Connecting Tissue of neurons. (Fig. 3)
Every seven 'neurons' one will contain an electronic photovoltaic device producing a pulsing, chirping sound in presence of daylight – ever changing according to mutations of the intensity of the light. (Fig. 2)
(Please note: the electronic devices, provided by the artist and assembled during a dedicated one\day workshop, will be easily recycled and disposed of at the end of life of the artwork and will not produce pollution and\or any arm to the environment).
The Connecting Tissue, composed by 35 to 55 'neurons' – depending from the number of volunteers who will concur to the creation of the artwork – will cover an area of approximately 80 to 120 sq. meters: suspended to the trees by one side and by the other side it will be secured to the ground by ring nails and ropes. It will be assembled during one\day workshops dedicated to binding skills and bamboo bending.
Size: (each neuron) 250 cm. diameter
Materials: split bamboo – 1 cm. and 2 cm. width, 250 cm. length
Natural cord (hemp) of three different sizes – 2 mm. 8 mm. and 12 mm.
Ring nails 35 cm.
Tools: cutters, hand saws.