Et in terra Pacis is a visual artwork conceived in the form of experimental film and video installation. The film tells three stories that have crossed from 1960 to today a symbolic place in the history of the Salento territory: the Immigration Identification center Regina Pacis. An emblematic and metaphorical place, born in the 1960s as a summer colony for children, became the largest Italian cpt in 1998, then the center of judicial scandals for the violence suffered by the refugees and today it is a ruined ecomostro that is being prepared to become a five star resort.
The place will be interpreted by Luca Coclite, visual artist, from an original idea conceived by him and the movie-maker Mattia Epifani. The project that will be called “Hall” is produced by Ramdom with the support of SIAE | Sillumina – Copia privata per i giovani, per la cultura e MIBACT.
The former reception center for refugees Regina Pacis is located in the south east part of the Salento peninsula, on the Adriatic coast, in the seaside resort of San Foca. The building looks like a huge box of cement corroded by the wind of the tramontana and the sea breeze, a gray casermon in contrast to the maritime environment that surrounds it, a detention facility with sea view. Throughout its history, Regina Pacis, there have been many things. It was built in the late 1960s, designed to be a summer children’s colony in the Lecce province, the colony closes in the mid-1980s. In 1998 it became a refugee center, the largest in Italy, the c.p. closes in 2006. After ten years in ruins, today is preparing to be transformed into an extra luxury hotel. This place seems to embody itself with its history and that of men who have crossed and lived the history of the land of Salento with its transformations. A contradictory and frontier place that, like the Salentino territory, from 1960 to today, has experienced a profound metamorphosis marked by different moments and phases of its history: the era of tradition and the popular dimension (now lost), the years immigration (from the Balkans and North Africa) and the era of mass tourism.
Regina Pacis is a place of passage, a dwelling of temporary stories, a ‘transforming thing’ that camelically assumes in every age the form and function the present entrusts to it. As a modern cement fortress, the ‘place’ is traced back to the stories of women and men who have lived it, remaining in their concreteness indifferent to their destinies.
THREE HISTORICAL PERIODIC
The former reception center Regina Pacis is a three-faced place, a building that has since its inception given rise to three different forms and social functions, all of which can be attributed to living. There are several people who lived, the children of the 1960s, the migrants in the 1990s and probably the tourists who will live in the future when the facility will be converted into a 5 star hotel.
PRESENTATION AND INSTALLATION OF THE PROJECT
The reflection will be on the theme of welcome, according to its different meanings: tourist reception as a result of the (most often fictitious) relationships the tourist has with the whole local system, the reception system on the territory intended for asylum seekers, refugees and recipients of subsidiary protection.
The concepts of sharing and contradiction, as well as the concept of place intended as guardians of memories, conflict and contamination, will be analyzed. The result will be a multimedia display where the three realities will touch the screen boundary, seamlessly and will talk to the spectator in an immersive way. The structure that will contain the videos, images and objects selected by the artist will constitute a constellation where matter and immateriality are part of the same scenario.