Jota Castro

Uplands Gallery
Level 1/12 Waratah Place Melbourne, August 2005
The opening scene of Luchino Visconti’s 1954 film Senso famously opens in the Venice opera house with a scene from Verdi’s Il Trovatore. Death occurs on stage. The audience of occupying Austrians and fervent Italian patriots clash, but there are collaborators among them. The distance between opera and life is diminished.

Castro concentrates his video camera on a beautiful singer performing in a traditional salon setting. Elegance and passion in the performance; malice and irony in the text.

The Presidenzia Italiana, Berlusconi, is in fact heir to the collaboration of Mussolini and Hitler and the trasformismo that has marked Italian politics for at least two centuries.
Margaret Plant
Austrian soldiers at the Italian opera in Visconti's Senso,
see Lowe's comment


Blogger geoff lowe said...

This review is so complex and clear!
I recently saw that part of Senso just last week
It was in a Martin Scorsese narration about how Italian films had influenced him growing up in NY
the clip showed the disturbance of a people about who owns their country
What I like the best about Jota Castro's work is how he uses the obvious
like Bush coming out of an oil barrel
Bush recently said something like "The problem with the French is that they don't have a word for 'entrepreneur.'"
He makes a challenge with stupidity
Political art is usually about having to say something extra to add value to transform everyday thoughts into art
Castro makes what we already know, the obvious, appear like a shock

8:33 AM  

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