Maintenance of What
If I maintain it, is it mine?
Or can I maintain it just if I own it?
And, maintenance of what? A place, a thing, an idea?
November 2018 - DAI Kitchen Presentation, Arnhem
Performative reading (dialogue), performed by Matthieu Blond (Sara: S) and Sara Cattin (Gregorio: G). Duration 20 min.
Part2May 2019 - DAI Graduation Acts
Performive reading (dialogue), performed by Olivia Arbacheli (Sara: S), Matthieu Blond (Sara: S) and Sara Cattin (Anonymous: X, Andrea: A), sound by Nicolò Tescari. Duration 25 min.
This series of performances is part of broader research on transhumant pastoralism I started in 2018, conducting interviews with various people who work and live within the valleys of the province of Biella, the mountainous area in the North-West of Italy where I live and come from.
Part of this research is the MA thesis Reconnect, and Stay Alive. Leaving behind the idea of domain at the passage of roaming shepherds. A thesis extract is available at https://www.neroeditions.com/staying-with-the-shepherd/
Transhumant pastoralism is a kind of semi-nomadic pastoral activity that raises animals while moving between the mountain tops and the low lands with a seasonal rhythm. In Biella, transhumant pastoralism shares its traditional territorial identity with the world of the capitalistic industry.
In Maintenance of What? I transformed the recording of the conversations I had with young shepherds into scripts. Questions go from “Do you listen to music when you are at the grazing?” to “What does it mean to maintain a mountain?” and “How does Europe undermine your autonomy?”.
S: Hi Gregorio!
G: Hi Sara.
S: Do you wear a watch?
G: No. I’m allergic to time, and the phone too.
S: And do you like photography?
G: I almost never let people photograph me.
S: How long does your day last? At what time do you start?
G: When the light wakes me! I wake up with the sunrise and when the sunset comes I go to sleep.
The shepherds agreed to the terms in which their words are being used.