Afa on the beach

Courtesy of the artist and 63rd-77th STEPS.
Courtesy of the artist and 63rd-77th STEPS.

63rd-77th Steps – Art Project Staircase – is a project space founded and run by artist Fabio Santacroce. The name refers to the final part of a multi-floor staircase (the area between the 63rd and the 77th steps) inside a building dating from the beginning of the XX century in “Quartiere Libertà”, a popular and multicultural district in Bari, Italy. The first site-specific exhibition hosted at the beginning of 2014 was by Amalia Ulman, followed by Ilja Karilampi, Renaud Jerez, Daniel Keller, Lucia Leuci, Airbnb Pavilion and the group show Always Brian (ti amo). The project space curates also online projects including the ones by Riccardo Benassi, Sol Calero, Massimo Grimaldi and Daniele Milvio.

Courtesy of the artist and 63rd-77th STEPS.
Courtesy of the artist and 63rd-77th STEPS.

63rd-77th Steps – Art Project Staircase – organizes off-site projects such as the group shows Afa and the current one Afa 2, with Michael Assiff, Rosa Ciano, Liz Craft, Maja Cule, Ditte Gantriis, Uffe Isolotto, Bradford Kessler, Spencer Longo, Lucia Leuci, Pentti Monkkonen, Rolf Nowotny, Fabio Santacroce and Ilya Smirnov. Afa 2 is on view until August 12, in the evenings between 7 and 9pm at Pane & Pomodoro Beach of Corso Trieste, Bari (Italy). The artists involved produced images to be printed on microfiber towels which were installed on the beach, under the reference of a little story about the breadcrumbs’ conquest by an ant in an apartment. The story reflects a local’s neo-realistic overlook on common, graceless summer life at the seaside.

Courtesy of the artist and 63rd-77th STEPS.
Courtesy of the artist and 63rd-77th STEPS.

“Bari, 20 July 2015 – Only one survived. It was not the usual lucky one but the most voracious and yet the most timid. It seemed dazed, rusty but fair. It advanced jerkily, up and down. The silence, diluted with boiling air, thundered in its dry stomach and inflated the few breadcrumbs torn away from the recently disinfected earthenware floor.
The air also bumped against the high mosquito nets, seeping painfully through the thick metallic meshes while the fat children, dressed of love and deception, were not able to catch, silently, down in the courtyard. Probably there had been no time, effort and intuition to educate them at the essentiality of the warm summer silence.

Courtesy of the artist and 63rd-77th STEPS.
Courtesy of the artist and 63rd-77th STEPS.

And every noise from outside sounded also as a roar in the stomach of the little ant that could contain, at most, only three crumbs of that authoritarian bread. 
This needed, in fact, to be monitored and dragged away frantically before the time when, even the asphalt became crumbly. How heavy is usually a dry breadcrumb that falls mistakenly on the ground? And potentially, in the impact, how many micro crumbs does it fractionate into? 
In any case, no one was in the apartment that afternoon, maybe they were all on the beach to roast their thick skins along with the unpunished lies. Meanwhile the fatty rice salad was earning flavor in the fridge.”

63rd-77th Steps

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