March 22, 2013


Considering the intensity of a poem like the Four Quartets, it is not obviously easy to include its meaning inside an artwork, and it's even more difficult to describe the processes, the procedures and the researches necessary for the creation of the audio-visual project that is 4/Quarti.

After the exhausting attempt to reproduce an audio-visual message equivalent to the poem, starting from its merely literary part, it is needed to accept immediately the impossibility to find a perfectly clear correspondence of the handled elements, the recalled contexts and the typical features of a poetical text. For this reason the "homage" was based only on a few contents exposed by Eliot, trying to make a synthesis of them that would have highlighted the sensory perception of the verses and manly showed what the literary language itself was unable to express through the syntax. Many components already cleverly used in the poem are duplicated in the audio-visual work, emphasizing the symbolic clues.

“The extreme complexity of the Eliotian symbolism rotates around a fundamental quadripartition in seasons and natural elements: I – Spring, Air; II – Summer, Earth; III – Autumn, Water; IV – Winter, Fire.” (A. Tonelli)

This quadripartition, besides to be present in the project, is stressed by the addition of chromatic sensations connected to each season and natural element; basically, the relationships between the symbolic components and the visual perception of the scenes are created thanks to colours. A colour is associated to every quarter: green (I), yellow (II), blue (III) and red (IV).

Moreover the four sequences develop a cyclical structure as a metaphor of man life, starting with the representation of death and old age in the first quarter and ending with childhood and birth in the fourth part. A further symbolic bond of the Eliotian poem has a religious nature that is punctually expressed in the video through the evocative recall to sacred contexts. The religious concepts linked to the four visual sequences are: redemption (I), sacrifice (II), eucharist (III) and sin (IV).

All these parallelisms give shape to a dialogue among mystic elements of nature, man and religion in which is debated an existential and anthropological impoverishment of the human being in the presence of life. It is represented philosophically as a journey that leads to a destination of resolution and wisdom where to find stillness.

Finally, there is the last important aspect connected to the occurrence of sensory perceptions: the set-up of key-scenes that show some audio-visual elements related to the five senses has established an informative relationship with the phenomenon of the synchronized audio-visual communication, getting close as much as possible to a cross-modal stimulation. Therefore clear references to the sight (I), the touch (II), the hearing (III) and the taste (IV) have been included in the project.

In order to emphasize the perceptual emotions and the cryptic characteristics contained in Eliot poem, the verbal component has been totally excluded from the video to avoid an attention shifting towards the poetical structure. Nevertheless the human voice is present inside the communicational context and completely dominates it in different fragments.

In this sense, the video wants to perform a real communicative experience of the Eliotian imagination and create a complete perceptional interaction thanks to a peculiar style of the audio-visual expression that uses images and sounds of natural landscapes, animals and people.

Anyway, in order to ease the comprehension of the work, verses of the text of the Four Quartets are linked below because they are helpful for observing the analogies between the audio-visual project and the poem.

Four Quartets Poem
Directed by Alex Calò
Music composed by Alex Calò
All Rights Reserved

March 18, 2013

The Control Removal

The idea was developed at the end of December 2012 in order to create information and entertainment talking about current social issues closely related to the Digital culture. The advent of Internet, and of all the recent technologies, has led to a new way of learning, creating and relating to the global market. New ways mean new problems, indeed the innovative tools have produced more opportunities and advantages but even, at the same time, different dilemmas. Therefore the six short videos can be defined as brief web documentaries that deal with education and entertainment industry, above all music industry. During every video historical information are provided in order to give a wide idea of the topic, with a little bit of humour and different interviews by experts or well-experienced people in that subject.

Why the Control Removal?

I've analyzed with accuracy this quote: “If you want to tell people the truth, make them laugh, otherwise they'll kill you.” So I asked to myself, why would people refuse the truth? There're a lot of components in the today's drama, in first place the lack of information makes the hesitation coming up. When people have not clear informative data they're not capable to catch the reality of facts. The best example of that, it's been used describing the political context by Victor Hugo when he wrote about Napoleon III that "2+2=5". 

We have also a secondary version of the truth made by insistence in the lie; "If you repeat a lie often enough, it becomes the truth", and that was essentially the nazi propaganda made by Joseph Goebbels during the WWII. For those who forgot what happened in Germany, the Nazist Party was elected by democratic vote. 

And there's another point: is there anything like a unique truth? The word itself is ambigous, multifaceted, and related to many other concepts called "fundaments of the truth". They are essentially based on reality, but: is it a subjective or objective reality? Maybe truth is not the right element of comparison. 

So, why is today harder than ever capturing the reality? Probably, cause we've lost the thought, the integrity of our thinking process inside a schematic aloof mechanism of society. "Don't think, just do it!" And inside this big box we lose the control of our lives.

Finally we have the worst factor of the human behaviour: sloth! There's a great quote from the italian author Ennio Flaiano saying: "If you admit that the shit - just one time - is not so bad, after you will eat it two-three times a day". So we don't see a lack of truth actually, but a lack of coherence and honesty in the receiver of the message. Perhaps, there will be always a sense of immorality in the human nature but without the criticism of observers, it has won even before the start, the lie just won.

Directing & Editing by Alex Calò
Intro music for "The Control Removal" composed by Alex Calò
All Rights Reserved