Following sort of a tradition by now, the new year begins through a workshop led by our amazing teacher Ruudt Peters. This year’s theme, as might be obvious through the images, was RED (last year it was DREAM), selected not for socialist reasons but as red is the color of the Chinese New Year and below is a short explanation of its reasons.
According to the legend, in ancient China, Nian (“Nyan”), a man-eating beasts from the mountains, could infiltrate houses silently to prey on humans. People later learned that Nian was sensitive to loud noises and the color red, so they scared it away through explosions, fireworks and the liberal use of the red. So “Guo Nian” actually means “Surviving the Nian”. These customs led to the first New Year celebrations. So this year Alchimia celebrated a sort of Chinese New Year, Ruudt Peters in fact has just come back from a three months trip to China.
For 3 days, and divided in couples, the students have been drawing, painting and making collages through the red colour while also being dressed in red. They also had to find red objects and reflect on a space on their body to give substance to their red dreams.
The whole workshop ended through a ‘ceremony’ in the magnificent Piazza della Signoria, when a number of colourful balloons have been launched in the sky.
‘What are you promoting?’ was the audience’s continuous question.
Nothing really, art in it’s own right while having fun, was the continuous answer…