#Giffoni54: festival poster depicting “The illusion of Distance” unveiled

The Illusion of Distance, the illusion of looking at each other and for each other, and then the certainty of being a part of each other’s existence, of finding one another to overturn visions and explain them through emotions. #Giffoni54 is a universal story, an endless love story that breaks down distances and gives space to what is normally forgotten, ignored, left out. A story that rejects paradox, that does not stop or stall but rather runs towards the other, towards those who have lost the meaning of their journey.

From July 19 to 28, The Illusion of Distance will be Giffoni’s main focus, and it will be interpreted in every possible form and space. The theme was chosen to point to the dangers of the sense of isolation that creeps into the lives of the new generations with the fear of the other, the different, the distant, with the illusion of being separated, and is felt as an absolutely significant topic by the 5,000+ jurors who will be gathering in Giffoni from more than 30 countries around the world. The theme is an invitation to re-trace common paths, to discover the invisible bonds that exist despite apparent divisions and to create new ones in order to prove how incredibly close and inextricably united we all are. But how close are we? The picture that portrays and highlights this year’s theme is a triumph of emotions, lines, colors, places crossed and places imagined. A perfect connection, the result of an absolute value, the representation of different yet never distant souls talking to each other and communicating, observing, feeling. Two figures with no gender or ethnicity suspended in a dreamlike setting beyond space and time, an ideal non-place in which everyone can find themselves and which everyone can envision: this is the main feature of the poster of #Giffoni54, which is the product of the ideas, creativity and sensibility of a collective of eleven artists – Bianca Costanzo, Chiara Ferrante, Diana De Stefano, Elisa Patafio, Emma Graziani, Giulia Minella, Giusy Lambiasi, Leandro Forte, Marica Mastromarino, Simone Castelluccio, Venera Leone – who, from April 16 to 20, took part in the first edition of Giffoni Shock!, a revolution in artistic expression, a gateway to the future, a haven for dreamers and a springboard for talent.

The poster portrays the simple story of people who drift apart, often ignore each other, forget about each other, part ways, but who, in the depths of the dark ground, as immense as the sky, as vast as the ocean, realize that their roots are inextricably bonded. Despite the fact that we often take opposite, even clashing directions, despite the fact that each path potentially holds unseen twists and turns, despite indifference, conflicts, misunderstandings and misconceptions, connection is inevitable. This is the message that Giffoni is setting out to share, highlight, spread.

The Giffoni artistic collective is a residential workshop group consisting of artists from all over Italy. A hub that engages new generations in collaborative artistic activities within a creative and cultural transformation space. Painters, illustrators, photographers, actors, musicians, composers, writers and digital artists have teamed up to give life to art works aimed at telling the story of Giffoni’s theme and activities with a brand new language, and they will continue to do so during the Festival in an interdisciplinary dialogue that will foster new creative paths by transcending traditional artistic boundaries.

The chosen theme is also deeply topical: “I’d like to emphasize one feature in particular of our beautiful and complex image dedicated to ‘The Illusion of Distance’, that is, the roots that hark back to a secret guarded by trees, which we may have forgotten”, explains artistic director Luca Apolito. “Seemingly isolated on the surface, the two figures are united by an underground net of roots. This system allows them to connect, exchange resources, offer mutual support, an ecosystem of cooperation that defies our perception of a natural world made of separate individualities. Similarly, we are all linked by invisible networks of history, traditions, experiences, languages and beliefs. Though not visible, our cultural roots are just as real and vital. And just as plant roots communicate with each other even though they belong to different species, our cultural roots have been communicating since ancient times even though they belong to different cultures. The illusion lies in perceiving our cultures and histories as separate and distant, while they are actually intertwined”.

“This model of collaborative activities allows people to share, connect and grow together through experimentation. In times of social change and cultural revolution such as ours, art and creativity play a fundamental role, fueling imagination, narrating transformations and generating essential energy for positive evolutions”, explains managing director Jacopo Gubitosi. “The goal of the artistic collective is to interconnect the daily lives of the new generations and thus produce a global impact, in the name of what has always been Giffoni’s mission, which is to write a new artistic-professional narrative, linking distant lives and cultivating the beauty and values of society in the most unexpected places through cinema, literature, theater, advertising graphics up to involving all the languages of new media. Therefore, Giffoni once again stands as an invaluable showcase for new generations”.                                                                         

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