This artist’s book gathers childhood memories, some lived experiences and personal reflections on the family histories and relations, and the ways in which they interweave with geographical locations.
"I've gathered so many books (….), all about the family. This is all washing over me like a waterfall. I can't figure out the genealogy, the chronology flows like currents that wind around each other at different rates. (…). And now I'm recognizing that I'm part of this tribe, this family of writers writing about our tribe."
These sentences can be found in Simone Forti's new publication, The Bear in the Mirror – a wonderful collection of stories, prose-poems, drawings, photos, letters, notes and memories.
Simone Forti dives into the (his)stories of her family and of the woollen mills they once owned, trying to put all the myths and fragments of information into some kind of perspective.
She takes us on a mind-provoking, mesmerizing journey through time and place, from December 1938 till the present moment, from Italy to Los Angeles.
Along the journey we find ourselves in different cities and in the woods, where we meet her family, bears, dogs and spiders.
and choreographer Simone Forti (born 1935 in Florence, Italy) has been a leading figure in the development of contemporary performance over more than fifty years. Artist, choreographer, dancer, writer, Forti has dedicated herself to the research of a kinesthetic awareness, always engaging with experimentation and improvisation. Investigating the relationship between object and body, through animal studies, news animations and land portraits, she reconfigured the concept of performance and dance. Forti emigrated from Italy with her family via Switzerland to Los Angeles in 1938, where she subsequently studied for four years with choreographer Anna Halprin and has since spent most of her life. She joined the experimental downtown art scene in New York during the emergence of performance art, process-based work and Minimal Art
and spent a fruitful time in Rome in the late 1960s, where she used the spaces of L'Attico to study and perform. Her work is seen as a precursor of the famous Judson Dance Theater—a group of artists experimenting with dance, including Trisha Brown
, Steve Paxton, and Yvonne Rainer
—and Minimal Art, although she prefers to be referred simply as a "movement artist."
Forti has worked with artists like Dan Graham
, Robert Whitman, Allan Kaprow
and Claes Oldenburg
and composers like Charlemagne Palestine
, Peter Van Riper, and La Monte Young