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TROPIC OF CAPRICORN (article first published : 2003-09-24)

The Durban Art Gallery is hosting an exhibition by Italian artist Luisella Carretta until the end of October.

Luisella Carretta's exhibition is being brought to the Durban Art Gallery by the Consulate of Italy as a diplomatic exchange between the port cities of Genoa and Durban and will be part of the Celebrate eThekwini Festival.

Her work is particularly relevant to the Durban museums (where the Art and Natural Science museums are increasing their collaborations) as she draws upon the natural environment for her installations. She has worked on the themes of birds, bees and bats and completed her first drawings of the flight of birds in 1973 where she registered the arrival and departures of house martins from their nests; she reproduced actual flight paths with notes on observations using media such as drawing, photography, text, maps and installation.

Her materials consist of leaves, sand, bark, cotton ribbons, and body performances. She similarly worked on how humans move in space observing paths people take and their behavioural patterns documenting and recording them like the flight of birds and bees.

The results give data on choices of transgression or conformity, naturalness or artificiality in relation to codified paths, functions and the environment. She currently collaborates closely with a new generation of ornithologists and entomologists and in 1986 was invited to take part in the Venice Biennale in the Arte e Biologica section.

As her work is particularly concerned with movement and the traces left behind it was considered appropriate to invite local choreographer Jay Pather to create a short dance piece for the opening event.

The exhibition closes on October 26.




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