A painting thrown among the hams at the supermarket: singular protest in Ischia

Singular protest in Ischia against the government's disregard for culture: a painting ends up among the hams in a supermarket.

Singular protest in Ischia against the government’s lack of interest in art and culture. Today Salvatore Iacono, an activist and founder of the open-air gallery Ischia Street Art based on the Campania island, went to the Decò maxistore on Via D’Ambra in Forio, placing two paintings by artist Mimmo Di Caterino among the groceries on sale at the supermarket: one in the fruit and vegetable department, the other among hams and salami in the fresh department.

The canvases (50x40 cm), wrapped in cellophane, priced and discounted, in addition to bearing the words Saldi, are accompanied by a caption that serves as a data sheet, bearing the slogan C’è anche l’Arte (title of the intervention), followed by the hashtags #recoveryfund and #recoveryplan. This the reference to the current economic-financial situation in which the globalized world finds itself, especially art and culture, which were completely sidelined and almost forgotten by the government and the public during the Covid-19 emergency. Especially, Iacono argues, art galleries are suffering the effects of the crisis and the months of closures imposed by the numerous and now nonsensical DPCMs, which have been going on since March last year and which give no respite or hope to culture and especially to the art world.

Iacono therefore intends to denounce “the lack, on the part of the State, of actions aimed at protecting a sector that is among the hardest hit at this historical moment, with specific reference to cultural associations and/or foundations, categories that cannot enjoy any of the expected Ristoro and therefore no form of support.” In 2020, Iacono explains, “the events sector suffered quite extensive damage: the cancellation of public and private events, with the consequent closure of museums and art galleries, caused enormous economic losses and the total standstill of a sector that no one is considering at the institutional level and for which, unlike in other areas, there are no refunds and compensation.” In short, according to Iacono, art “art, all too much devalued and increasingly downgraded, is self-displaying on the shelves, putting itself up for sale, indeed selling out, in the same way as any over-the-counter product.... Because even art is starving.”

Salvatore Iacono is not new to this kind of intervention, through performances of social denunciation and, since the first lockdown, he has continued his personal battle in defense of the entire sector of Italian art galleries, without letting government constraints stop him, conceiving and bringing on stage new models of art fruition. From the first poster art interventions made with Street Art File Print from May to August 2020, through the various exhibitions-non/exhibitions starring Mimmo Di Caterino (from Lockdown/Social to the most recent Social Distancing trilogy), to the latest installation(Oxygene by Michele Penna), made last December in the six municipalities of the island.

Pictured: the painting amid the hams.

A painting thrown among the hams at the supermarket: singular protest in Ischia
A painting thrown among the hams at the supermarket: singular protest in Ischia

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