Symphony for Absent Wildlife [Fabulae Naturae]

Date: 2015
Ref: 5569
Materials: Symphony for Absent Wildlife performance, wall drawings, three-dimensional audio immersion
Dimensions: Site specific
Catalogued: Fabulae Naturae. Milan, Marsilio 2015
Exhibition history: 2015, ZegnArt, Ermenegildo Zegna global headquarters, Milan
Courtesy: Lucy + Jorge Orta and ZegnArt

The exhibition Fabuale Naturae brings together three intersecting bodies of work by Lucy + Jorge Orta, Symphony of Absent Wildlife, Amazonia and 70 x 7 The Meal, to create a multi-sensory performance incorporating a 3D audio immersion, a performance, wall drawings and food.

Lucy + Jorge Orta transformed the architecture of the Ermenegildo Zegna headquartes designed by Antonio Citterio, into a forest kaleidoscope of murals, which wrapped around the building, to unveil a remarkable ode to wildlife. Within this botanical setting, the artists staged Symphony for Absent Wildlife, a audio-visual installation to intensify the feeling of stepping into a fairy tale world, inhabited by fictional creatures of the forest. Each musician wears a tailcoat and mask, in the form of a woodland creature tailored from reclaimed Red Cross felt blankets. The three-dimensional sound-scape is conceived as a dichotomy between a ‘false’ orchestra of flutists acting in a symphony for nature and a ‘true’ orchestra consisting of bird whistles.

As a centeral motif, a life-size tree floor drawing, whose branches lead visitors to 'food stations', where chef Davide Oldani served a menu of sustainable delicacies. Choosing timely convivial moments to discuss sustainable issues, the artists also created a limited edition of Royal Limoges porcealin to support the restoration of the Punta Mesco area in Italy. For each artwork sold, a row of vines is planted.

Fabulae Naturae was commissioned by ZegnArt for the Expo Milan (May 2015), and is a new episode of the discursive and performative platofrms connecting art, nutrition and ethical themes presented by Lucy + Jorge Orta in cities around the world since 1997. Photography Paul Bevan.

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