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Dear Lluis,

And so I am writing to you, having just emerged from the long apnoea of the film, to share a few thoughts with you.  First of all, I hope that LA VEDUTA LUMINOSA  conveys to you and gives to you what it gives to me.

As you well know, the approach to working on the film was very instinctual. As usual, we went ahead without giving ourselves too many explanations. And I want to start by thanking you for welcoming this gesture; perhaps this is also why we found each other again. I can only admire your way of listening without prearranging anything, of waiting to discover things without imposing an anticipatory discourse. There is always a moment after the continuous and incessant animal movement, when a desire to understand arrives with some urgency.

Throughout the making of the film and in the most difficult moments, I always had the impression that everything was already done. It was very tiring work, wanting to mean something without meaning anything. But then a question arises: What are we doing, why all this energy, this incessant play of life, inside and outside the framework of the film, to ultimately find ourselves in the oppositional suspension of cinema? Also, because the art of cinema and the business of film rarely go together, they are mutually suspicious. Today we find ourselves in an era in which an artistic cinema seems absent, overshadowed by a landscaped saturated by commercial content. This absence, however, opens up challenging paths that also permit great potential. One (the film) requires concreteness, accountability, acting and reacting forces in support of a finished object, while the other (the cinema) stands in a zone free of constraints, where the concrete elements that trace that indefinite breath, denying the circumscribed zone of the film, continuously crowd in and overlap. It rarely happens that they are as one, perhaps never in any one film, but exist as the sum of the individual parts, in their mutual, incessant, irreducible and in some ways exceptional canto. A canto that is in tune with the continuous and motionless motion of the limitless; and every day it remains bewildered by an ending that never finds the source, the origin of that canto and that life.

We have felt and smelled it in the forest, that something impossible to understand: the immediate life that escapes us while we try to contain it.

We have told ourselves many times that this impossible challenge is the calling. In the world everything passes and leaves hardly a trace. In the word „hardly” we see the spring source. And we have felt and smelled it in the forest, that something impossible to understand: the immediate life that escapes us while we try to contain it. And this escape, which sings of a very concrete abstract presence, is precisely an art, the art of fugue.

A suspension in this constant call of the movement of things, neither visible nor invisible, but only tuned to that canto which escapes the usual movement of parts. And how Hölderlin sang it. Neither on earth nor in heaven.

And so we walk in the company of Hölderlin. But after this dispersal, once we have returned from the forest, we still find ourselves in the asphyxiated aphasia of the city, where the only singing is a swarm of chatter, in which we also participate. We hear the strident echo of a distance that is now so close as to continually reminds us of certain parts of the film’s path.

I would like to be so bold as to say that our film, in which there are no wigs or 19th century clothes, is a portrait very close to Hölderlinian openness, underlining even more, were it still necessary, that the real portrait is not about resemblance but about bringing out and condensing all the fleeting passage in a point, as virtual and distant as possible. And what better way to make a portrait of Hölderlin/Scardanelli, the last phase of a work and a journey that is so important to us.

I am also reminded of Pascal’s words, which come close to serving as a reading of the film, without wanting to imply... „the heart has its reasons, which reason knows nothing, and this can be ascertained in a thousand things.”

In LA VEDUTA LUMINOSA  we dealt with the Hölderlin who accepts the absence of attraction to the divine fire and observes the forced turning of humans toward a nature that is no longer a divine home.

Our Hölderlin tries to remain present in this suspended space, in this double reversal: an interspace, occupied neither by the betrayal and disappearance

of God, nor by the betrayal of man. But exactly what is meant by the betrayal of man? I believe that by betrayal it is likely that we mean this twisting towards the only measurable datum and order. Today we are in the most advanced phase of this turning, in which all the aspects of a certain old age of humans reside, who in their fall, flee into the safe call for scientific and technological dogma. That is why, even more so, we feel the need for this standing between the two ends.

For it is precisely this mutual turning of the two orders, this distance, that succeeds in making one feel and possess the other dimension. As he says, you only really get close to what is foreign, while what is near will never be near.

I am also reminded of Pascal’s words, which come close to serving as a reading of the film, without wanting to imply ... „the heart has its reasons, which reason knows nothing, and this can be ascertained in a thousand things.”

Perhaps this is also why it was possible to work on a plane of the image that does not highlight the geometry and the measurable order on a surface plane. This clarifies the need to construct, as you noted, an optical machine that would put the movement of the photons back into circulation, depriving them of the linear rebound towards the camera. An attempt to create a space of suspended light, to see simultaneously this recto and verso, these two parts, like the very same prison, in which one no longer knows who confines and imprisons the other, that part which is imprisoned.

And so our film.

A very simple story, a very simple meeting (of love), between someone who has failed because he is overwhelmed by the impossibility of controlling images with words (Mr Emmer), and someone who is trying to bring out a datum in the magic of the visible, with a work of organization and construction (the young Catarina). A frightened and fascinated approach engendered by their turning their backs on each other.

A different way of being, of being present in the transparency of the zoo, the car, the forest. Almost opposing positions.

And so perhaps the space and distance between the word and the image tell us once again that this brief work of ours makes sense and corresponds to a need: to maintain this distance, this non-correspondence as much as possible, despite the fact that the image-word seems to triumph as a unicum.

All these words to share in extreme synthesis a thought: that of continuing to constitute this dimension of being, suspended in this interspace between the two overturned and betrayed worlds, but also for this reason, always very close.


With affectionate greetings,

Fabrizio Ferraro

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