Cassata Drone

Dates:      20 June - 20 September, 2018
Location:  Via Malta 21 (Piazza Borsa), 90133 Palermo, Sicily, Italy

"Cassata Drone" (#CD; #CassataDrone) is an independent exhibition involving RAQS Media Collective, Maria D Rapicavoli and Stefano Cagol in a historical building attic, leaning because of a WWII bomb. CD is conceived by g. olmo stuppia and curated by Giovanni Rendina.

The exhibition is open from the 20th of June to the 20th of September 2018 (opening June 14th and private visits from June 15th to 19th) in Palermo where the three artists will be interacting with one room, while each transforming them into three different immersive installations. Cassata Drone problematizes Sicilian linguistic and culinary tradition (cassata, from the Arabic quas ’at) in relation to its geopolitical and military culture, from the post-war period to the pre- sent (drone). On the one hand, Sicilian Cassata becomes the focus for a visual investigation of decoration, taste and language. Cassata siciliana is a traditional sweet from all areas of Sicily, born in Palermo. Cassata consists of round sponge cake moistened with fruit juices or liqueur and layered with ricotta cheese and candieds (which are also cannoli’s filling). On the other, the word Drone opens a space for transforming the presence of military devices (Frontex, Hawk Drone, Predator Drone, MUOS) into aesthetic forms, making Sicily a natural strategic “aircraft carrier” in the Mediterranean Sea.

For "Cassata Drone" MDR (Maria D. Rapicavoli) has realized a site specific installation, Crooked Incline, using white porcelain sculptural elements. Shaped like plumb lines, they are suspended from the ceiling. This work is inspired by a historical event that modified the building hosting the exhibition. Dropped in 1943 by the Allied Forces, a bomb deformed the building bending it on one side. The perceivable incline produces a slight disorientation to whom access the space. Her installation is based on this sense of instability and displacement caused by the structure. MDR’s intervention transforms the exhibition space into an airspace. The ceramics position reproduces tactical air zones from a military Sicily map where only military drones can fly.


Manifesta 12

Dates:                6 June - 4 November, 2018

TV Previews:     14 June, 2018

Press Previews: 15 June - 16 June, 2018

Location:           Teartro Garibaldi, Palermo, Sicily, Italy


Manifesta 12 is the twelveth edition of the European Nomadic Biennial, founded in the early 1990s as a European biennial of contemporary art striving to enhance artistic and cultural exchanges after the end of Cold War. Manifesta is run by its original founder, Dutch historian Hedwig Fijen, and managed by a permanent team of international specialists. 

Article 11 (2018) is a project by Tania Bruguera in collaboration with Francesco Cinquerrui, Francesco D’Amore, Sveva D’Antonio, Giuseppe Firrincielli, Corrado Gugliotta, Maddalena Migliore, Gianfranco Di Pietro, Guglielmo Manenti, Pino Pardo, Maria Domenica Rapicavoli, Alessandra Saviotti, Velentina Terranova (Movimento No Muos). 

Documents selected by Tania Bruguera from the activists’ archives narrate a story of an ongoing battle near the small town of Niscemi in southeastern Sicily, where the United States Navy has implemented a new global communication system called MUOS (Mobile User Objective System).  It operates as a global cellular service provider to support war from a distance, coordinating and controlling US drones and unmanned aircraft. The base station in Sicily is one of four; the others are in Hawaii, Australia and Virginia. The location for the three gigantic parabolic antennas in Niscemi was chosen very strategically: in the middle of the last cork forest in Sicily, hidden amongst hills. Since 2009 the inhabitants of the area have been fighting against the MUOS because of the antennas’ harmful effects on human health and the environment.

MDR is participating with her work M.U.O.S., Construction Site (2013), and HF (3-30MHz) (2013). M.U.O.S., Construction Site (2013) is one of three large size photo providing an overview of different stages during the construction of the MUOS (Mobile User Objective System) – a controversial system of satellite communications at ultra-high dangerous frequency built on the Niscemi (SIcily) US Naval Radio Transmitter Facility (NRTF) base. HF (3-30MHz) (2013) is a photograph of the Naval Radio Transmitter Facility (NRTF) Niscemi established in the south-central part of Sicily. 26 of the 46 trasmitters antennas are HF transmitters (High Frequency, electromagnetic waves between 3 and 30 MHz).