A photographic workshop was held in mid-October in the ancient Florentine botanic garden as part of “Theater, Body and Diversity” program. Leon Jones, 1st year SACI MFA in Photography student, led the group of patients and staff from the Fili e Colori daily center in Florence, equipped with handmade pinhole cameras. See: “Theater, Body and Diversity” pinhole camera workshop with SACI MFA in Photography student, Leon Jones: Part I
Our friends from the daily psychiatric center Fili e Colori, came to visit the Body Archives class at SACI and see the results of the pinhole camera works done at the Botanic garden. Leon Jones gathered the slides of both positive and negative images. The group was shown their images by projection and Leon shared the printed copies. All pictures are characterized by curious “mistakes,” leaks of light, overexposure, sudden bursts of sunlight or other. These are not seen as mistakes, but as occurrences that make this process unpredictable, and for that reason more beautiful. Diversely beautiful, so to say.
They talked about the plague, the theme of the Body Archive’s “Theater, Body and Diversity” project. “The botanic garden,” Leon suggested, “is the place that may be seen as a safe haven, a hiding place. It is also a place full of “foreigners,” trees and plants kept inside both for their protection and for their biological reclusion.” Leon talked about his past occupation as an air traffic controller, and how this experience could be translated into performance work. Alessandro Fantechi, theater director, talked about a potential sound itinerary at the botanic garden. (Photos above by Eleonora Chiti.)
Vicenza spoke about her illness. She gave them a book, as a present, entitled: I made peace with myself. Dario talked about monsters, about things that he hears and sees, which are not there. He wrote a poem once which was a sort of a list of various monsters. Pippo praised Pope Francesco, and how he reminds us of how horrible are all the wars that are going on, and shared a photo that someone took of him and a well known Italian TV presenter. He is very proud of that photo.
Body Archives students shared their current works with the group. Molly showed her “anatomic embroidery;” Noah and Zaina played their sound works, Lynn projected her video. They shared coffee and biscuits, and planned the next meeting for after the midterm break. It was a beautiful atmosphere.