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exhibition expanded: simone forti

On the occasion of our current exhibition project L'orecchio di Dionisio, featuring sound works by Miroslaw Balka, Simone Forti, and Marcello Maloberti, we are pleased to present a series of viewing rooms expanding on these artists. The first Exhibition Expanded online presentation is devoted to LA-based artist, choreographer, dancer, and writer Simone Forti (Florence, 1935), who is present in via A. Stradella 7 with her experimental sound piece Face Tunes (1967). We look forward to welcoming you to the gallery to experience the work through September 18; scroll down to discover this viewing room's focus on Forti's relationship to music and sound.

In occasione del progetto espositivo L'orecchio di Dionisio, che si compone di opere sonore di Miroslaw Balka, Simone Forti e Marcello Maloberti, siamo lieti di presentare una sequenza di viewing rooms che espandono il focus su questi artisti. La prima presentazione online Exhibition Expanded è dedicata all'artista, coreografa, danzatrice e scrittrice basata a Los Angeles Simone Forti (Firenze, 1935), che presenta in via A. Stradella 7 la sperimentazione sonora Face Tunes (1967). Siamo lieti di accogliervi in galleria fino al 18 settembre; per approfondire il rapporto di Forti con la musica e il suono, vi invitiamo a esplorare la viewing room.

simone forti

Face Tunes

1967

Installation view of L'orecchio di Dionisio, 2020

Galleria Raffaella Cortese, via A. Stradella 7, Milan

simone forti

Face Tunes

1967

Installation view of L'orecchio di Dionisio, 2020

Galleria Raffaella Cortese, via A. Stradella 7, Milan

simone forti

Face Tunes

1967

Installation view of L'orecchio di Dionisio, 2020

Galleria Raffaella Cortese, via A. Stradella 7, Milan

“Face Tunes” is a piece of music played from a score. The score is a set of outlines of seven profiles of faces traced on a long roll of paper. One straight line runs along the middle of the entire scroll. This is the zero line. The profiles face upwards, the throat of one followed by the forehead of another. The bridge of each nose sits on the zero line. The score is rolled on rollers turned by a motor, and the seven faces pass by, from left to right, at about one per minute. Attached to the end of the slide whistle is a stick that reaches down to the score. The player holds the whistle parallel to the score and plays it while tracing the profiles with the stick as the faces roll by. Simultaneously, a continuous tone is being played on the tape recorder. This constant pitch has been recorded from the slide whistle, as is the zero pitch. It is the pitch the slide whistle should be making when the stick is touching the zero line. Since the profiles are traced in higher and lower pitches, these are always in contrast with the zero pitch, except for the periodic moments of convergence.
From Simone Forti, Handbook in Motion: An Account of an Ongoing Personal Discourse and Its Manifestations in Dance, 1974.

simone forti

Face Tunes

1967

simone forti

Face Tunes

1967

 

In 2012 Simone Forti participated in the exhibition Moments. A History of Performance in 10 Acts at the ZKM | Center for Arts and Media in Karlsruhe, Germany. As part of the public program related to the show, Forti was invited to do a talk where she spoke about her relation to Anna Halprin and Judson Dance Theater as well as Face Tunes, the work presented in the exhibition. At the end of the lecture the artist demonstrates the use of the modified slide whistle to read the score and perform the sound experimentation.

Nel 2012 Simone Forti ha partecipato alla mostra Moments. A History of Performance in 10 Acts allo ZKM | Center for Arts and Media a Karlsruhe, Germania. Nell’ambito del programma pubblico in occasione della mostra, Forti è stata invitata a una conversazione in cui ha raccontato del suo rapporto con Anna Halprin e il Judson Dance Theater, nonché di Face Tunes, presentato in mostra. Alla fine dell’incontro, Forti dimostra l’uso del flauto a coulisse, modificato appositamente per la lettura dello spartito, azione fulcro della sperimentazione sonora.

simone forti

Artist talk at ZKM, Karlsruhe, 2012

Video © ZKM | Center for Arts and Media Karlsruhe

simone forti

Al Di Là

2018

Album artwork

In 2018 Tashi Wada​ issued Al Di Là, the first full-length collection of Simone Forti’s recorded works, on his imprint Saltern. The album highlights Forti’s use of her voice, folk songs, handmade instruments, and physical space in sound pieces ranging from the early ‘60s to mid-80s. The limited edition CD and digital album are available on Bandcamp.

Nel 2018 Tashi Wada ha pubblicato Al Di Là , la prima raccolta integrale delle opere sonore di Simone Forti, con la propria etichetta Saltern. L’album sottolinea l’uso che Forti fa della voce, di canzoni popolari, di strumenti fatti a mano e dello spazio fisico in lavori sonori che vanno dai primi anni ’60 a metà degli anni ’80. Il CD in edizione limitata e l’album digitale sono disponibili su Bandcamp.

 

In a recent interview published on BOMB, Forti discussed her works related to music and sound with Tashi Wada. The expansive conversation touches on key moments in Simone’s life and practice, click here to read the full article.

In un’intervista recentemente pubblicata su BOMB, Forti parla con Tashi Wada di suoi lavori che si legano alla musica e al suono. La lunga conversazione ripercorre alcuni momenti chiave della vita e della pratica artistica di Simone, clica qui per leggere l’articolo completo.

 

Tashi Wada​: Regarding that idea of momentum and trajectory, it feels to me that your sound works are directed but not really composed. Something gets it going and drives it on, but the materials are left to be themselves. This might relate to the Dance Constructions. You set up circumstances, but within them it’s open-ended.
Simone Forti: I’m not directing dancers to make this or that movement. Instead I’m keeping them from falling into zombie mode and keeping things from getting too interesting. I make it clear what kind of presence I’m looking for—and one clue for them is being aware of interesting compositional things happening without trying to make those interesting compositional things happen. It now occurs to me that sound may be another arbitrary object, an element I’ve brought in or that has just happened. So there hasn’t been a series of a certain kind of exploration of sound, but rather almost arbitrary ideas that came up, like Face Tunes (1967).
TW: In comparison to the rest of the pieces on Al Di Là, Face Tunes, in which you transcribe outlines of facial profiles into melodies, is interesting because it almost exists in a more conceptual space, as far as the sound goes and what the audience is hearing or experiencing.
SF: I had traced a series of faces in profile onto a scroll, which rolled by as I followed the lines with a stylus attached to a slide whistle. Originally the audience didn’t even know these were tracings of faces. They were repetitive units that were similar but different.

 

Throughout her decades-long career exploring movement and dance, Forti has collaborated with a number of musicians and composers, including La Monte Young and Marian Zazeela, who are featured in one of the parts of Bottom (1973) as well as Yoshi Wada, Tashi’s father. Simone Forti’s work with American composer and artist Charlemagne Palestine is among her most celebrated.

Durante la decennale carriera di esplorazione del movimento e della danza, Forti ha collaborato con numerosi musicisti e compositori, tra cui La Monte Young e Marian Zazeela, che sono presenti in una delle parti di Bottom (1973) e Yoshi Wada, il padre di Tashi. La collaborazione di Simone Forti con il compositore e artista americano Charlemagne Palestine rimane tra le più celebrate.

simone forti

Illuminations

1972

Ink on paper (Set of 2)

27,9 × 21,6 cm each

 

After meeting Palestine at CalArts in 1970, the two began collaborating on Illuminations, a series of performances based on the use of a common language between Forti’s circular motions and Palestine’s melodies. In conjunction with the choreography, Forti made a series of drawings in 1972 based on circles and numerology that functioned as scores for her and Palestine’s performances. Exploring the concept of improvisation and the dynamics of the circle, including centrifugal and centripetal forces, the drawings illustrate the duality of mental process and movement.

Dopo aver conosciuto Palestine alla CalArts nel 1970, i due iniziarono a collaborare a Illuminations, una serie di performance basate sull’uso di un linguaggio comune tra i movimenti circolari di Forti e le melodie di Palestine. Contemporaneamente alla coreografia, Forti realizzò una serie di disegni nel 1972 basati sui cerchi e la numerologia che facevano da spartiti per le sue azioni e per la musica di Palestine. Esplorando il concetto di improvvisazione e le dinamiche del cerchio, comprese le forze centrifughe e centripete, i disegni illustrano la dualità di processo mentale e movimento fisico.

simone forti

Illuminations

1972

Vegetable ink and graphite on vellum (Set of 4)

33 × 26,7 × 3,8 cm framed each

simone forti

Illuminations

1972

Vegetable ink and graphite on vellum (Set of 4)

33 × 26,7 × 3,8 cm framed each

simone forti

Illuminations

1972

Vegetable ink and graphite on vellum (Set of 4)

33 × 26,7 × 3,8 cm framed each

simone forti

Illuminations

1972

Vegetable ink and graphite on vellum (Set of 4)

33 × 26,7 × 3,8 cm framed each

simone forti

Vicino al Cuore / Close to the Heart

2019

Installation view at ICA Milano

Photo: Filippo Armellin

 

In 2016 Simone Forti and Charlemagne Palestine used Vleeshal Markt as a rehearsal space to work on a new version of their Illuminations series, which was performed there on April 2 and April 3. Both Forti and Palestine had performed in Middelburg before: Forti in 1980, when she participated in the interdisciplinary arts festival ‘Forum’, and Charlemagne Palestine on several occasions, including a solo show at Vleeshal in 1979 as well as various other concerts in Middelburg.

Nel 2016 Simone Forti e Charlemagne Palestine hanno occupato lo spazio del Vleeshal Markt per le prove di nuova versione della serie Illuminations, sviluppata insieme sin dagli anni ’70, e che hanno messo in scena nello spazio di architettura gotica il 2 e il 3 aprile. Sia Forti che Palestine si erano esibiti a Middelburg già decenni prima: Forti nel 1980, quando partecipò al festival interdisciplinare d’arte “Forum”, e Charlemagne Palestine in diverse occasioni, tra cui una mostra personale a Vleeshal nel 1979 e in numerosi concerti.

simone forti & charlemagne palestine

Illuminations (Night)

Performance at Vleeshal Markt, Middelsburg, Netherlands

April 2, 2016

simone forti & charlemagne palestine

Illuminations (Day)

Performance at Vleeshal Markt, Middelsburg, Netherlands

April 3, 2016

Following Simone Forti’s 2016 solo show Here It Comes at Vleeshal, in 2018 Vleeshal and Koenig Books published The Bear in the Mirror, a collection of Forti’s stories, prose-poems, drawings, photos, letters, notes, and memories. The artist’s book has now been translated in Italian; L’orso allo specchio was published by Kunstverein Publishing and Vleeshal, and produced by Kunstverein Milano with the support of Galleria Raffaella Cortese and Fondazione ICA, Milano in 2020. Click here to learn more about the Italian edition.

A seguito della mostra personale di Simone Forti Here It Comes al Vleeshal (2016), nel 2018 Vleeshal e Koenig Books hanno pubblicato The Bear in the Mirror, una raccolta di storie, poesie in prosa, disegni, foto, lettere, note e ricordi di Forti. Il libro dell’artista è stato ora tradotto in italiano: L’orso allo specchio è stato pubblicato da Kunstverein Publishing e Vleeshal, la versione italiana è stata prodotta da Kunstverein Milano con il supporto di Galleria Raffaella Cortese e Fondazione ICA, Milano nel 2020. Clicca qui per maggiori informazioni sul libro.

simone forti

L'orso allo specchio

2020

simone forti

L'orso allo specchio

2020

simone forti

L'orso allo specchio

2020

simone forti

L'orso allo specchio

2020

 

L’orecchio di Dionisio, our exhibition of sound works by Miroslaw Balka, Simone Forti, and Marcello Maloberti is on view at the gallery through September 18, 2020. We look forward to welcoming you, please contact galleria@raffaellacortese.com to make an appointment.

L’orecchio di Dionisio, il progetto espositivo con opere sonore di Miroslaw Balka, Simone Forti e Marcello Maloberti è in corso in galleria fino al 18 settembre 2020. Vi aspettiamo e vi invitiamo a scrivere a galleria@raffaellacortese.com per prendere appuntamento.