In Joseph Beuys’ collection of images, we find two videos which particularly clarify his purposes. In one, the artist is locked inside o room where he tries what we would consider impossible: to pacifically live together with a coyote. In another one, he sweeps up the material vestiges of a left-wing demonstration and piles up all the collected rubbish, among revolutionary pamphlets and consumer goods’ packages, inside an art gallery where he would open an exhibition. The work he had on his hands at the end of life, which came in the middle of the last decade, was a continuation of the preoccupations that had already distinguished him in the 60s and 70s.
The production of olive oil ond wine represented to him a positive relationship between human and nature – utopian equilibrium which he looked for, as it happened with the foundation of the Institute for the Renaissance of Agriculture, for example. From this, so, the video on that simultaneously artistic, anthropological, and environmentalist ultimate investment – recalled at the 1998 Milan Triennial – was received as title the “Difesa della Natura”, in reference to his “operations” in the Italian city of Bologna.
“Difesa della Natura” also is the title of this cd by Emanuel Dimas de Melo Pimenta, with a music premiered at this homage to Beuys. And, although the composer follows the first of principles to which multimedia art must obbey – the autonomy of means practised by Cage and Cunningham, or by Var se and Le Corbusier – it is cear that the “ecological” character of Joseph Beuys’ aesthetics has spread to him. With the usual “tools” – computer (virtual reality, to be more precise) and synthesisers – he has created a work in two movements which instead of the spectral atmospheres we knew in him, he puts dense and organic sound matters, linking his music more to the earth.
What is a surprise, explaining the greater attention given to rhythmic plane, with an occasional protagonism even of percussion. Undoubtedly it is digital, but completely to do with the drums that in some regions are still our planet’s lingua franca Thus, a new field of action for Beuys’ utopia is announced: almost at the start of the twenty-first century and the third millennium, our “return” to Nature does not necessarily exclude technological advances achieved during the period when, to use terms beloved of the German creator, they lived in rupture. The important task now is to conciliate or, rather, the reconciliation. Pimenta’s music is cybernetic and virtual; it relies on chips and RAM memory, but it is inhabited. We hear voices in it, the utterances of living people hovering in the ether.
DIFESA DELLA NATURA is the fifth individual compact disc by the composer Emanuel Dimas de Melo Pimenta.
A concert commissioned by the Baroness Lucrezia De Domizio Durini (RISK ARTE OGGI), DIFESA DELLA NATURA is the soundtrack of a film about Joseph Beuys’ life, specially his last years in Italy and his famous project on Nature. DIFESA DELLA NATURA was launched in the Triennial of Milan, Italy, in 1998.
Rui Eduardo Paes