"Mutamenti.Le metamorfosi sintetiche by fuse* and Francesca Pasquali is the title of the project curated
by Federica Patti for the fifth edition of das - dialoghi artistici sperimentali [experimental artistic dialogues] with the launch of a double exhibition marked by a widespread, immersive and varied experience that involves the different spaces of the Corporate Museum and focuses on the idea of the changeability, transience, evolution that notions, images, media, technologies and cultural elements implement over time, incessantly, just like the transformation processes that take place in nature.
The heart of the exhibition project develops at CUBO in Porta Europa with Artificial Botany by fuse*, a video installation accompanied by a series of prints made according to different methods, open air interventions in direct visual dialogue with ancient and original artefacts.
Before the invention of photography, botanical illustrations and herbaria were the only way to visually archive the world's many varieties of plants and to understand their essence before natural evolution led to their subsequent metamorphosis. These images have been used by physicists, pharmacists and botanists for the identification, analysis and classification of species, but also by generations of students, as a system for depicting reality. Although they are no longer scientifically relevant, they have nevertheless become a historical, artistic and cultural heritage, a source of inspiration for paying homage to life and nature using different tools and methods, even if many of the plants no longer exist.
Creations by the leading artists in this genre - including Maria Sibylla Merian (Amsterdam, 17th century) and Marianne North (London, 19th century) - have thus become the learning material for a particular algorithmic system capable of recreating new images with morphological elements that are extremely similar to the original ones, but with unprecedented and previously unseen details and characteristics. The oldest and best known herbaria include that of Ulisse Aldrovandi (Bologna, 16th century): begun in 1551, today completely digitalised in high resolution and available online, and still a global benchmark of a forma mentis and of a method.
Marking 500 years since the scholar's birth, CUBO Unipol has collaborated with Orto Botanico and Erbario di Bologna with a series of special appointments and activities, and by exhibiting an original example of a painted herbarium kept by the University Library of Bologna, next to the digital creations of fuse*.