« La vetrina della collezione di sabbia era la meno appariscente ma pure la più misteriosa, quella che sembrava aver più cose da dire, pur attraverso l'opaco silenzio imprigionato nel vetro delle ampolle. »

(en. The showcase of the collection of sand was the least glitzy but also the most

mysterious, it looked like having more to say, despite the imprisoned silence inside the opaque glass of ampoules).


« C'è una persona che fa collezione di sabbia. Viaggia per il mondo, e quando arriva a una spiaggia marina, alle rive d'un fiume o d'un lago, a un deserto, a una landa, raccoglie una manciata d'arena e se la porta con sé. Al ritorno, l'attendono allineati in lunghi scaffali centinaia di flaconi di vetro entro i quali la fine sabbia grigia del Balaton, quella bianchissima del Golfo del Siam, quella rossa che il corso del Gambia deposita giù per il Senegal, dispiegano la loro non vasta gamma di colori sfumati, rivelano un'uniformità da superficie lunare, pur attraverso le differenze di granulosità e consistenza, dal ghiaino bianco e nero del Caspio che sembra ancora inzuppato d'acqua salata, ai minutissimi sassolini di Maratea, bianchi e neri anch'essi, alla sottile farina bianca punteggiata di chiocciole viola di Turtle Bay, vicino a Malindi nel Kenia.

In un'esposizione di collezioni strane che c'è stata di recente a Parigi - collezioni di campani da mucche, di giochi di tombola, di capsule di bottiglie, di fischietti di terracotta, di biglietti ferroviari, di trottole, d'involucri di rotoli di carta igienica, di distintivi collaborazionisti dell'occupazione, di rane imbalsamate -, la vetrina della collezione di sabbia era la meno appariscente ma pure la più misteriosa, quella che sembrava aver più cose da dire, pur attraverso l'opaco silenzio imprigionato nel vetro delle ampolle. »


Italo Calvino, “La Collezione di Sabbia”

I asked myself many times a few questions: “What is an Archive?”, “What are we considering  as archive in our daily lives? “Where are they hiding?”, “How can they take shape today, in our historical and social context?”

An archive by definition is “a collection of historical records, or the physical place they are located. Archives contain primary source documents that have accumulated over the course of an individual or organization’s lifetime, and are kept to show the function of an organization.

In general, archives consist of records that have been selected for permanent or long-term preservation on grounds of their enduring cultural, historical, or evidentiary value”.

Also: “The archive [...] arises spontaneously as sedimentation of practical, administrative and legal documentary. It is therefore constituted by a complex of documents, bound together by a mutually original link,  which is necessary and determines each document.”

For this reasons they affects and are influenced one anothers “. The site that provides to contain this accumulation is called Archive.


Within Ar.Ri.Vi. I met this old wooden cabinet. It had some drawers and above them some classificatory label were placed.

“That’s an Archive”, I thought.

An old piece of furniture from a cellar, in which musical scores, records and whatnot were stored. It was Something that,maybe, went beyond the music or any archival and classificatory criteria.  We are not able to know it at all.


Probably, the practice of Archiving is something that belongs to us unconsciously. In every corner of our life or our memory is  an archive is hidden. What is changing are their forms and how they can manifest themselves today. Sometimes they reason, classify and order in our place. Sometimes we govern them, sometimes we suffer them.


I decided so that I would take possession of this old archive through the instruments of my actual time, i.e. the spirit of my time and what belongs to me: his physical imposingness and

structure becomes lighter through the digitization of itself as a website. It will allow to access to its drawers within I will put what I decide to store, following its labels and letting me guide by them through the web.


To be in dialogue with the forms of the past through our present tools to build  new ways of recovering memory for the future.


This is my new definition of the Archive now.

2010

Website (offline), Archive Cabinet


in the frame of

Mash Up, sul concetto di Archivio.


View of the Installation at AR.RI.VI - Archivio Ricerca Visiva, MilanoLa_Vetrina_della_Collezione_di_Sabbia.....html