The 15th edition of Il Rumore del Lutto (The Sound of Mourning) is set to be held from October 8 to November 7 of this year in Parma. A cultural project established in the Italian city in 2007, conceived by Maria Angela Gelati and Marco Pipitone with the aim of creating a space for meeting, dialogue and reflection on the themes of life and death, addressed through interdisciplinary dialogue and covering various areas.
As part of the event, the Order of Architects, Planners, Landscape Architects and Conservators of Parma, in collaboration with AMA (Accademia Mendrisio Alumni) and curated by Francesco Di Gregorio and Eleonora Caggiati, have organised an interesting dialogue set to take place on October 9 between two important protagonists of the international cultural scene: photographer Letizia Battaglia and architect Mario Botta. The two professionals have been asked to discuss and talk about the role of mourning and of the sacred in their artistic experience: Letizia Battaglia through her black and white photographs, precious testimonies of the search for a truth beyond the violence imposed by the mafia and Mario Botta who has made the sacred the primary matrix of many of his architectural projects.
Letizia Battaglia has been directing the photographic team of the “L’Ora” newspaper in Palermo, her hometown, since 1974. Her shots of children, women, celebrations and moments of mourning, always captured in black and white, are essential documents for gaining awareness and informing public opinion of crimes committed by the mafia.
The central subject of her shots is not actually the Mafia, but above all the city of Palermo, narrated through its inhabitants, in poverty and in splendour. Events and moments of mourning related to the Mafia, but also the looks of children, of women, streets, funerals and celebrations, the daily life of a city characterised by a thousand contradictions. Captured in a respectful and solemn black and white that pushes us to look inside ourselves and gain awareness of what has been and what is, yet without cynicism and without smothering out the freedom of sight and hope.
The secular sacredness of Letizia Battaglia’s images will be accompanied by the narrative of the sacred in Mario Botta’s architectures. The architect, originally from Mendrisio, in Switzerland, and author of the Piazzale della Pace, Giardino della Pilotta redevelopment project in Parma, has created works involving different types of buildings, including many religious structures.
"The architecture of the sacred – explains architect Mario Botta – gives shape to silence, to the "unspoken", invites meditation is a place filled with symbolic and metaphorical meaning capable of evoking something beyond the "finite"." Indeed, in the architect’s compositional research, the design of sacred places becomes an ideal context to reflect on certain invariable characteristics of architecture such as gravity, matter, limit and light, as well as to try to understand the basic principles of designing living spaces.
Conference: VISIONI DEL SACRO - Dialogo tra Letizia Battaglia e Mario Botta
Date: October 9, 2021
Curated by Francesco Di Gregorio and Eleonora Caggiati.
Location: Auditorium del Palazzo del Governatore, piazza Garibaldi, Parma - Italy
Photos: Letizia Battaglia, Pino Musi, Shobha
Il Rumore del Lutto
Date: October 8 – November 7, 2021
01_Letizia Battaglia_Photo by Shobha
02_Felicia Bartolotta Impastato_Madre di Giuseppe Impastato_Cinisi 2001_Courtesy Letizia Battaglia Galleria Francesco Pantaleone
04_San Carlino_Lago di Lugano 1999_Mario Botta_Photo by Pino Musi