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Time Line
a retrospective of Roberto Paci Dalò

opening: Monday, November 5, 2012, at 19:00

from November 6 to December 3, 2012
hours: 10:00 – 13:00, 14:00 – 18:00 Monday to Friday | Saturday and Sunday by appointment
venue: Marsèlleria, Via Paullo 12/A, Milan | t + 39 02 76394920


The Monday Performances, at 19:30

November 5
Roberto Lucanero | opening
November 12 Everydayjohncage (Andrea Felli, Roberto Paci Dalò, Leonardo Sonnoli)
November 19 The Shanghai Night

Visual artist, composer/musician, and director, Roberto Paci Dalò (http://robertopacidalo.com) presents on the three floors of Marsèlleria Time Line, a retrospective exhibition—enriched by some never-before-seen works—in which drawings, sounds, sculptures, and videos are installed so as to create a comprehensive, “total” work intimately tied to the type of hosting venue.
Through light, projection, and sound the spaces of Marsèlleria are interconnected, to create a single, large immersive environment.
Beginning with handwritten pages, the show presents itself like an electric field. A place activated by history and by people. A two-way radio station, a device that creates vibrations, flashes, lightning, shadows, falls, losses between inside and outside. A suspended state where more than one time is encountered (in short, a multiple time line).

Roberto Paci Dalò, active for years on the international scene, creates his work starting with sound and drawing, then expanding to sculpture, installation, music, film, performance, and collaborative projects, between institution, the independent scene, and pop culture.
Art, science, and nature are the key words of his oeuvre. A pioneer in the use of Internet and in integrating analogical and digital technologies, his work areas include: radio transmission, telematic networks, persistence of classical tradition in contemporaneity, psicoacoustics, robotics, cybernetics, man-machine interaction, real-time sound-image elaboration, soundscapes (acoustic city portraits), cartography. In defining his own work Paci Dalò coined the definitions: media dramaturgy and theatre of listening.
He frequently creates his works in various fields, further investigating different aspects of perception of the same material. Thus scene and music works often become radio pieces or interactive sound/video installations and online projects.

In addition to customary venues (galleries, museums, theaters...), site-specific practices are one of the most important characteristics of his work: experiencing places to transform them, often with the people who live them (including ghosts in ghost towns). Relationship with people is therefore important to establish bonds that—though stemming from artistic practice—may also transcend by creating collaboration and participation on various levels. Among his geographic references, some areas of the world (and their cultures) such as Armenia and Georgia (Transcaucasia, in general), Mitteleuropa, North American deserts, Jerusalem.
His systematic visits to sites of worship (in particular Armenian and Orthodox Christian churches, synagogues, and mosques) are part of his practice, while a particular relationship with the Hebrew universe acts as a constant counterpoint to his oeuvre.

There are two main external contributions that will enrich the show:
in collaboration with Arthub Asia and SH Contemporary, a space within the exhibition in which the works by Yu Xiaolu, Yu Xueou, Qin Mei, SunMengxuan will be presented; a corner dedicated to SoundOhm by die Schachtel, an independent record label, present throughout the entire period of the show, with records and books dedicated to sound art and connections with visual art.

Time Line is dedicated to John Cage: on display is his mesostic dedicated to Paci Dalò and never presented in public before.

Time Line is a co-production Marsèlleria and Giardini Pensili.


Roberto Paci Dalò’s artistic investigation is so dense, layered, and never truly repetitive that divulging it without any hierarchical or above all chronological order is perhaps the only way possible in presenting it.

That’s why Time Line is an impeccable title: it reflects the compositive thinking of a survey itinerary in a complex space like Marsèlleria, but it also represents an excellent model of enjoyment.

It’s a journey in the flow of time of Roberto Paci Dalò, and it’s the best way possible to look at and listen to his exhibition.

For him, it is an ordering principle (perhaps even an architecture for future memory), but for us it is an indispensable suggestion: what counts is what we receive, without being obliged to take everything forcedly; sounds and images freely circulate in space and are destined to resurface, sooner or later.

There’s a formidable but also perverse aspect for an artist who chooses to work above all with sound: it resides in knowing well that probably the audience will bring away with it only a part of the whole. Something that will resound like an impression, like the memory of a sensation. In fact, even if it bursts into emotion, listening will nonetheless be partial and completely subjective, absolutely impossible to reproduce in its entirety, and nothing will be in any way recordable (or photographable). Roberto Paci Dalò knows this very well and rightly so he extends this condition of perceiving to the totality of his oeuvre. It is no coincidence that he refuses to present his own videos on monitors: their edges would risk entrapping something that by its very nature is evanescent and destined to freely wander, both in the physical and mental spheres.

Thus in Time Line we find drawings—which precede works that might take place—books, sculptures, installations, videos, but a single large figure that includes and gathers an unfolding of seemingly disparate means and languages: radio.

Probably, radio is Roberto Paci Dalò’s great obsession. It is the medium he has always turned to and with increasing continuity, and is both physically distributed and evoked in the exhibition space.

But over time—the time of an artistic biography and the time of the audience who encounters it in the form of a work—an entirely new game takes place. In time, the program is open and infinite, and subject to any hypothesis or means of listening and interpretation.

In all likelihood, the clangor, noise, voices, and sounds of all that and all those who came before us still linger in the atmosphere: events, people, animals. They move, reverberate, and bounce off like an echo, even though we still aren’t able to catch all of them. And maybe there will never be a way to do so.

But if the atmosphere is the museum of memory—of the entire world’s memory—then a radio is the only instrument that will ever allow us to do so.

Roberto Paci Dalò gives life to sound and image compositions. Be they flows of consciousness, visions, narrations, or dust poised in possible worlds, there’s one thing that may liken them all: they are irradiated, spread, transmitted. And inevitably destined to cross the ether world for eternity.

–  Andrea Lissoni

Roberto Paci Dalò has presented his works in traditional venues (Kunsthalle Vienna, Venice Biennale, Ars Electronica Linz, Opera of Vienna, etc.), as well as in unusual sites: the Adriatic shore, with fifteen kilometers of sound diffusion (Publiphono); the Charterhouse of San Martino, one of the most important Neapolitan baroque churches (L'assedio delle ceneri); a building of industrial archeology at Graz (the rave Trance Bakxai); a former Canadian Masonic lodge (Western Front Vancouver, Local & Long Distance); an opera theater in Rimini, closed in 1943 and reopened for only two nights (De bello Gallico); armored cars from World War II (Deutsch-Russisches Museum Berlin-Karlshorst, Schwarzes Licht); a Ventennio architecture icon (Palazzo della Civiltà del lavoro Rome-EUR, Metamorfosi); web (creation in 1995 of Radio Lada, one of the first web radios).
He has collaborated with artists from various disciplines: musicians (Kronos Quartet, Philip Jeck, Terry Riley, Scanner, Tenores di Bitti, Robert Lippok, Massive Attack, Almamegretta, David Moss); writers (Predrag Matvejevic', Gabriele Frasca); visual artists (Maurizio Cattelan, Hermann Nitsch, Robert Adrian X); philosophers (Giorgio Agamben); graphic designers (Leonardo Sonnoli); photographers (Roberto Masotti, Guido Guidi); actors (Umberto Orsini, Arnoldo Foà, Anna Bonaiuto, Sandro Lombardi). He also produces albums and books on a regular basis.
He recently created Ye Shanghai, a musical-visual performance for SH Contemporary 2012 and produced by Davide Quadrio, in collaboration with Francesca Girelli (Arthub Asia), in an enormous building donated by the Soviet Union to China in 1955; and the project Kol bpm (with Delilah Gutman) for the Verucchio Festival, curated by Ludovico Einaudi.
Underway (December 2012) is a solo show, LUFTKRIEG, at the Galerie Mario Mazzoli in Berlin.

For all 2012 Roberto Paci Dalò conceived, with Andrea Felli and Leonardo Sonnoli, Everydayjohncage, a daily project, dedicated to John Cage.
From January 1 to December 31, 2012 a viral system distributes every day in a public space of Rimini as well as in private places fragments and materials related to John Cage. A newspaper (Corriere Romagna) publishes every day for the entire year a phrase by John Cage, while a radio (Radio Icaro) broadcasts an audio commercial every day. Phrases and materials by Cage are published online each day, and over the year a series of projects that work precisely upon Cage’s viral penetration in the city take place. Live performances are also presented in other cities. He lives and works in Rimini and Berlin.

Marsèlleria, a venue in Milan open to different forms of expression: "a creative platform dedicated to people who share the desire to express themselves". In Milan, in the area of Porta Vittoria, it presents itself as a setting free from established codes, compatible with the most varied fields of intervention. http://www.marselleria.com

Press kit and images in high and low res available at


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