In January of 1968 a violent earthquake hit a vast area of Western Sicily between the provinces of Agrigento, Trapani and Palermo. The village of Gibellina, among the worst-hit by the quake, was almost completely destroyed.
A few years later Gibellina was rebuilt a few miles away and the Mayor, Ludovico Corrao, called for the help of internationally known architects, urbanists and artists. Invited by Corrao, Alberto Burri refused to intervene in the “new” Gibellina but proposed a gigantic Land Art installation that would completely cover the ruins of the old village destroyed by the earthquake: the Grande Cretto. T
he work was built between 1984 and 1989 but it was never completed. This year, on the occasion of Alberto Burri’s 100th anniversary which will culminate on October 10th with a retrospective at the Guggenheim in New York, the Grande Cretto was finally completed according to the original project.
AUDIOGHOST 68 is an opera for lights, sounds and a thousand actors specially created for Alberto Burri’s Grande Cretto by Anglo-Italian musician Robert Del Naja and Italian artist Giancarlo Neri on the occasion of the great Italian artist’s 100th birth anniversary.
One thousand white fireflies move and dance in the night in all directions inside the “veins” of the Cretto, their moving light sculpting the dark shapes of the Cretto’s islands and forming a great luminous mosaic in constant evolution.
In the air, coming from who knows where, are the sounds and voices of a long-gone era, that year 1968 that changed the world for a long moment but that here, in Gibellina, like a true Apocalypse, marked the end of it.
Alberto Burri’s Grande Cretto, remembering but also hiding the tragic event under concrete, represents a return to life through art. We would like to pay homage to this great piece, and to the great artist who created it, with a “collective” work that would further underscore its greatness: tonight, it will take a thousand of us.
Robert Del Naja and Giancarlo Neri
More about AudioGhost68...
...in the Italian English-written Nero Magazine:
AUDIOGHOST68 by Robert Del Naja and Giancarlo Neri at Cretto di Burri in Gibellina
NERO è una rivista trimestrale di cultura contemporanea – distribuita in Europa e negli Stati Uniti – e una casa editrice specializzata in libri d’artista, edizioni, e cataloghi per conto di musei, fondazioni e collezioni private. NERO si occupa anche della cura, direzione artistica e consulenza di progetti culturali e artistici.