PIZZA carries on with the tour across the Italian independent spots for the arts. These places exist: they live, evolve, ferment, simmer and make their voice heard in the artistic situation, which is quite stiff and dusty in this country. We succeeded in meeting BOCS team, thanks to the help of Artissima Lido, a section dedicated to the artist-run spaces by Christian Frosi, Renato Leotta and Diego Perrone. This is what they told us.
Space Thirteen: BOCS
How did you conceive your space?
The first work had the title of Muri Di Carta (Paper Walls), a virtual community made up of young Sicilian artists that was thought to be for the web only. It was 2001, Giuseppe Lana and Claudio Cocuzza, the first one was an artist and the second one a graphic designer, started their career: they organized exhibitions for emerging artists at local spaces, then the cured show exhibitions for the social centre Auro, which took place into an unoccupied and cleaned up space. The need for independence and deliberation led them to create the cultural association beBOCS.
We wanted to give a space different from the others, a specific site, and a raw holder. Here it is Bocs, 90 square metres of space opened in 2008.
Where do we find this place?
The showroom is in 150, via Grimaldi in the San Cristoforo district, a though area in the east suburbs.
BOCS is situated into the historical docks of Catania which is slowly improving thanks to the appearance of several realities in the world of contemporary arts.
Who does animate it?
Besides Giuseppe Lana as the artistic director and Claudio Cocuzza as the technical director, there are many people who are interacting with the project. The support artists and the public that follow the association’s activities are very important.
What is the philosophy behind it?
The association supports the artists by giving them the chance to improve their research. Collaborating with a territory means entering in local relationships as well. From the first event, a little group of neighbours has shown quite timidly and politely, ready to be infected. There was a serene and relaxed atmosphere. That’s the reason why, thanks to BOCS, many neighborours have a daily contact with art. Some of them have even become the protagonists of a project by Giuseppe Lana on the occasion of an event: kids and adults from the district have given life to “Progetto Grimaldi [meno 1]”, one of them, Zio Pietro, has taken part with a video to Artissima Lido 2011 in Turin.
What is the schedule for 2012?
The association produces 5 projects per year. 2012 has been inaugurated by Sebastiano Mortellaro, an artist from Syracuse, with the project “Agorà” cured by Giusy Diana. In March a four-handed work by Stefania Zocco and Annamaria Di Giacomo cured by Alessandra Ferlito. In April we started a new experience with both BOCS and other Sicilian realities. Besides achieving projects with over 30 years old Sicilian artists, from this year on we will supervise the youngest artists’ works we will find interesting. The first of these projects is “Twins”, an exhibition about the “double”. The exhibition is about two couples of twin artists. During the summer, we will continue with BOCS/origini, a cycle of International residencies in Sicilian provinces. For this second experience, we have picked up Canicattì as a location, a small town near Agrigento, and have sent there Lisa Wade, an America artist. Afterwards, BOCS will be the interpreter of “Orlando”, a project cured by Luca Francesconi. Adalberto Abbate and Maria Domenica Rapicavoli will close the year.
Do you have any wish?
BOCS is the result of the need to create a reference point, a space for the arts that might involve everybody, both experts and public. The aim is contributing to the artistic and cultural growth of the place we live in. BOCS is a “tiny space” for the contemporary arts that aspire to originate new transformations through a “big network”, which might help changing the external perception of our territory.
Translation credit: Chiara Ferrara