Created as part of a weeks residence under the tutelage of Jens Barth at the Palazzo Zenobia, Venice, 2016.
Venice is a city living through simulation, exemplified by its bells; both church bells and door bells. The city is littered with beautiful doorbells: golden, shaped like lions or flanked by copper flowers they line the walkways and surround the piazzas in the same way they have since the eighteenth century.
Though they represent function they do not invite it. If one looks closely there is no evidence of use, no finger prints and little wear and tear. It is unlikely you will ever see one of them in use. Similarly, the church bells ring for no discernible reason. In 2012 Venetians won a battle with the church to reduce the ringing of the bells which were ‘disrupting weekend lie-ins, waking up sleeping babes and setting off howling dogs’.Though they are rung in moderation now they still seem to be omnipresent. Rather than calling people to church, however, they seem to work in the same way as atmospheric music in the queue for rides at Disneyland, an artifice intended to illicit a certain feeling in the listener.
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