Unlived

A video project by  the artist Fiamma Montezemolo 

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The European economic “crisis” of recent years, especially in Greece, Spain, and Italy, had an impact on the general conception of labor, in particular the middle class’. This video builds on the work of the psychoanalyst Adam Phillips who explains how all of us lead two parallel lives: the one we are actively living, and the one we feel we should have had or might yet have. As hard as we try to exist in the moment, the unlived life is a strong presence in us. We coexist with the myth of our own potential, of what might be or might have been. In this 8-channel video installation, the artist follows the line traced by her interlocutors’ desire for a second working life, present in many of us and seldom actualized.  Starting with an art historian and the problems related to her profession in contemporary Italy, the interviewee’s desire for a second life lead us to a second interlocutor and monitor screen, a cook. The cook in turn takes us to journalist, and so on, serially with 6 other interlocutors. This chain of work, actualized or desired, concludes with two possible outcomes:  workers whose desire was actualized and who lead two simultaneous working lives; unemployed workers who choose another option of life (suicide) as a result of their inability to find work in times of crisis.

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