VIR Viafarini-in-residence
VIR Viafarini-in-residence

11/12/2022 - 22/12/2022

Viafarini, Milan IT

Curated by Giulio Verago

ph. Emanuele Sosio Galante

Embarrassment makes you blush,
attraction causes butterflies in the stomach, fear causes a cold sweat, anxiety makes salivation slow down.

Although invisibly, it is actually apparent how the body, emotions and feelings are closely linked. Psychosomatic science considers them as a single reality in continuous dialogue and interaction to the point that in certain cases they cause physiological reactions that sometimes give rise to a disease with its own characteristics and mode of development. The body speaks to us, giving voice to what our mind cannot accept or communicate freely, turning it into physical malaise and thus generating psychosomatic symptoms. In today's hectic society, it is now common for an individual to subject his or her body to a state of emergency for very long periods of time and to unexpressed or unresolved emotions, such as anxiety states dragged out over the years, difficulties in dealing with anger or old grudges: the lack of time does not allow us to process our feelings, somatizing them into physical symptoms that we blindly trivialize and underestimate.

Thus, through the projects I don't know how to play with my balance in Via Farini 35 and My gut (brain) feelings on-a-chip in Via Giulio Cesare Procaccini 4 (Fabbrica del Vapore), Camilla Gurgone shows and reveals these unconscious worlds, focusing especially on disorders related to the gut- gut axis, that is, the architects of those psychophysical discomforts we perceive daily.

I don't know how to play with my balance uses a playful object such as the Hula Hoop (the use of which focuses mainly in the area between the pelvis and the intestine while also requiring a strong mental concentration) to activate in the viewer conflicting emotions capable of destabilizing one's emotional status. The fragility of the balance between the gut and the brain is accentated by the artist by creating painted concrete Hula Hoops, then placing them in electronic installations and unstable situations: a pulley holds in tension two circles connected to a mechanism that is activated every

time someone in the audience changes mood; a circle incessantly spins on itself causing an anxious relaxation; a performer sways quietly until her Hula Hoop shatters into a thousand pieces.

In Fabbrica del Vapore, Gurgone takes a more scientific approach to these issues, starting with "organs-on-a-chip," clusters of cells grown in chips in vitro that make it possible to study the interactions of different organs with each other and the diseases that can result. In 2021, researchers at MIT Boston developed a chip capable of connecting the brain, liver and colon to analyze the gut-brain axis and the influence of the gut microbiota on it.

My gut (brain) feelings on-a-chip consists of three chips reproduced in aluminum, each of them placed on an electric heating pia- cer, while the cellular microfluids normally used in such devices are replaced with a mixture of water and thermochromic paint (capable of changing color with temperature). The artist, being able to control the installation remotely, whenever something or someone causes her an 'emotion between happiness, anxiety or anger, she activates the heat to one of the plates, allowing the viewer to see her own emotional mutation in real time.

Hey, i see you lost your smile, 2022.
Painted concrete, iron, electronic system.
400 x 270 x 50 cm.

Relaxation technique, 2022.

Painted concrete, metal, electronic system.

70 x 198 x 14 cm.

I don't know how to play with my balance, 2022.
Performance, December 13, 2022.

Painted concrete, iron. Variable dimensions.

I set myself up, 2022.
Painted concrete, iron.

70 x 70 x 2 cm.

My gut (brain) feelings on-a-chip, 2022.

Aluminum, thermochromic paint, heating plates, smart sockets.

110 x 95 x 90 cm.

Part of archival works placed in Fabbrica del vapore, Milan.