Parma is invaded by wolves: the new work by the Cracking Art collective

29 yellow wolves and 1 gray wolf in the Piazzale della Pace in front of the Pilotta, right in the center of Parma: this is the new installation by the Cracking Art collective, which was created on the occasion of Parma Italian Capital of Culture 2020+21.

Twenty-nine yellow w olves and one gray wolf invade Parma’s historic center: this is the unreleased installation Tempo di Lupi (Time of Wolves ) by the Cracking Art collective, created on the occasion of Parma Capital of Culture 2021, as part of the PARMA 360 Festival of Contemporary Creativity. The work was placed inside the stretch of water in Piazzale della Pace, in front of the Pilotta complex. Later, the yellow wolves will be moved inside Parma Station in a triple installation that will involve the areas of the second floor of the Travellers’ Space, the Mezzanine and the Basement.

The yellow wolves refer to Giallo Parma, the historic color that characterized the facades of the city’s houses to evoke the domestic and protective dimension of the place, while the gray wolf is a symbolic reference to the Apennine gray wolf (canis lupus italicus) that inhabits the mountainous and hilly territories of the Tuscan-Emilian Apennines and that is increasingly approaching population centers. With this work, Cracking Art intends to bring to life a wish for coexistence between humans and wild life, with a view to a more widespread understanding of the mechanisms of a nature that attracts us but in front of which we are frightened and uncertain when we recognize in her a potential danger.

The wolf is an inhabitant of woods and forests, of natural places to be protected, and is an animal that is part of the cultural history of Italy through representations handed down to the present day since the time of the Etruscans. At this moment in history, wolves are regaining territories abandoned by man and are once again becoming protagonists of our lives.

“The expression ’Wolf weather,’” says the movement, “is used when the weather is not favorable but one is still inclined to act and move, just as wolves do who never hibernate and face the difficulties of the winter months. The past months have been marked by great difficulties and the return to a peaceful environment still seems uncertain. So it is wolf time, time to act together and coordinated for the good and survival of the group.”

The name of the group, formed in 1993, refers to the English verb “to crack,” which describes the act of cracking, breaking, breaking, giving way, collapsing. “Cracking” is the process used to turn petroleum into naphtha, the basis for thousands of synthetic products such as plastics. For the Cracking Art artists, it is the moment when the natural permutes into artificial, the organic into synthetic, and it is this process that they intend to represent through their art. Their works, made of regenerated plastic, are intended to inspire reflections on the importance and environmental impact of the regeneration of materials, choosing a mode of expression that combines the logic of the group with that of individual investigation and is expressed through engaging performative actions, in which colorful and decidedly outsized animals invade the most varied places, from the spaces properly dedicated to art to those of everyday life.

And on the occasion of Parma Italian Capital of Culture 2020+21, Cracking Art intends to revive the knowledge of a tradition that encapsulates the cultural and environmental history of our country, tying together nature and culture in a new balance that takes into account the mutual need for harmony for the common good.

Parma is invaded by wolves: the new work by the Cracking Art collective
Parma is invaded by wolves: the new work by the Cracking Art collective

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