BLACK MED

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BLACK MED
BLACK MED
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THE MEDITERRANEAN, OR WHERE AFRICA DOES (NOT) MEET ITALY

The Black Mediterranean is a transnational site of globalization. Black is the color–or rather, non-color–in which all shades merge, that which the sea assumes during the crossings pursued by the million migrants who have ‘burnt’ it in the past three decades. The metaphor of ‘burning’, indicating crossing, is used in colloquial speech by North Africans, who, since the early 1980s, have traversed the Mediterranean with the hope of finding upon its European shores the potential to work, to participate in democracy, and establish better life conditions for themselves and their families. Besides its literal meaning, the Arabic verb haraqa (‘to burn’) is used in Mediterranean Africa, from Morocco to Egypt, in a number of colloquial locutions, always indicating some experience of transgression. In Arabic, to ‘burn’ a norm, a law, or even a red light (one says ‘hargt l-feu rouge’), one is in fact breaking rules, trespassing norms, infringing laws. Similarly, harraga (literally, ‘those who burn’) are aware of the harg−namely the burning, or crossing, of the Mediterranean−as an act of transgression.

Alessandra Di Maio

BENEATH THE SKY, ON THE SEA: INTO THE BLUES

Against the colonising spirit of the algorithm seeking ‘to tear speech out of history’, music from below, from the despised depths of the Occidental archive, holds out another promise, sustains another space. Bodies, cultures and histories are here altogether less recognised but also less fixed. On the move, in process, such sounds return us to our senses, reach into memories, sustain desires, futures. The sham of rational neutrality is subverted. For music sustains, while simultaneously sabotaging, the bridge between the algorithm and the mystery of language. In the cut, in the beat, in the interval sustained in sound, an abstract universalism is breached, and another more complicated and inconclusive world can be heard and felt.

Iain Chambers

About

Black Med is an ongoing platform initiated by Invernomuto in 2018. The Mediterranean sea, once understood as a fluid entity aiding the formation of networks and exchange, is now the scenario of a humanitarian crisis and heated geopolitical dispute. Black Med aims at intercepting the trajectories that sounds trace passing through this protean area, as migration routes leave sonic trails that, in the words of Iain Chambers, “resist representation, and propose an affective economy [that is] intrinsically diasporic.”

The core of the project is an algorithm able to play with the tracks and to broadcast an endless stream. The archive consists of music and sounds selected by Invernomuto and a network of contributors that were invited at different stages since the inception of the project. Moreover, the system is open and anyone can upload new sounds into it: the goal is to have a growing archive, a Black Med magma, which evolves constantly.

OUTER RHYTHMS ⋈ CLUB FUNCTIONAL ⋈ VERNACULAR ⋈ GROOVES ⋈ MODERN STRUCTURES ⋈ SEASCAPE ⋈ FIELDWORKS ⋈ SOCIAL MUSIC

Invernomuto, Black Med, POMPEII, installation view at Parco archeologico di Pompei, Pompeii, 2021. Ph: Giulio Boem
Invernomuto, Green Med, installation view at The Green Parrot, Barcelona, 2021. Ph: Roberto Ruiz
Invernomuto, Black Med, Београд, Beograd, installation view at 58th October Salon-Belgrade Biennial 2021, Belgrade, 2021
Invernomuto, Black Med, Chapter IV, performance part of Meetings on Art, La Biennale di Venezia - Biennale Arte 2019, Venice, 2019, courtesy Delfina Foundation and Arts Council England. Ph: Marco Franceschin
Invernomuto, Black Med, Chapter I, performance at Cinema Galleggiante, Venice, 2021, in collaboration with TBA21–Academy. Ph: Riccardo Banfi
Invernomuto, Black Med, Chapter II, set up, performance at Dansem Festival, Marseille, 2018
Invernomuto, Black Med, talk with Alessandra Di Maio and Iain Chambers at Manifesta 12, Palermo, 2018. Ph: Cave Studio
Invernomuto, Mediterranean Sea Water, Not Suitable for Drinking, inkjet print, PVC mirror, 50x75, 2018, courtesy of the artists and Pinksummer, Genova

Project supported by the Italian Council (7th Edition, 2019), program to promote Italian contemporary art in the world by the Directorate-General for Contemporary Creativity of the Italian Ministry of Culture.

DISCLAIMER: all the visual materials contained in this website are deliberately selected and edited by the artists. All texts are authored by the artists and Mattia Capelletti unless explicitly stated. Their purpose is to contextualize the music within the broader research framework of Black Med, and their scope is inexhaustive. If you are the owner or producer of any of the materials used and would like it removed, report omissions, inaccuracies, offensive or misrepresentative content please contact [email protected]

A PROJECT BY:

Invernomuto

DESIGN:

La Colonia Studio

MUSIC SOFTWARE PROGRAMMING, SOUND DESIGN:

Luca Mucci

AUDIO SOFTWARE ENGINEERING:

Fotis Kutsukos

TEXTS:

Mattia Capelletti, Invernomuto

EDITING & DATA ENTRY:

Matteo Duccoli

PROOF READING:

Robert Girardin

SUPPORTED BY:

Fondazione Morra Greco (Naples), Pompeii Commitment

THANKS TO:

Alessia Volpe, Pinksummer (Genoa), The Green Parrot (Barcelona), Centre d’Art Contemporain Genève (Geneva), Black Med contributors: Kareem Lotfy, Donato Epiro, Paul Gilroy, Lamin Fofana, Rabih Beaini, Discostan, DJ Ryna, Daniele Baldelli, Bill Kouligas, Ma’an Abu Taleb, Webhelp, Deena Abdelwahed, MSYLMA, Palm Wine, Leila Bencharnia, DJ Rupture, Iain Chambers, Stathis Gourgouris, DJ Pery, Ayesha Hameed, Reem Shadid, Daniel Blanga Gubbay and many more to come.

INFO & CONTACTS:

invernomuto.info