Venezia Anno Zero


Andrea Morucchio Short Movie
Fondazione Archivio Cini, Venezia.  
September 1 - November 12, 2020 
Venezia Anno Zero is a 13-minute short film by Andrea Morucchio that documents by video Venice during the 2020 Spring lockdown period caused by the Corona virus. 

VAZ is made through a selection of short clips taken from about thirty hours of footage. The soundtrack, developed by a contemporary musician Claudio Rocchetti, brings together original filming sounds with specially created original music. 

The beauty and spirit of the lagoon city emerge from the moment when all the activities linked to the mono-economy based on the exploitation of mass tourism cease. The chaos and crowding in the calli, campi and canals, the filth and rubbish abandoned everywhere, the pollution of the air and water in the lagoon, the out-of-control bars and restaurants, the shops overflowing with cheap products for tourists.... . all this suddenly disappeared, allowing the city to manifest a poignant and metaphysical beauty. These moments of suspension allowed those who had the opportunity to cross the 'calli' and 'campi' to live an experience that it is no exaggeration to describe as dreamlike or even cathartic. An unprecedented beauty and charm in the history of the lagoon city has re-emerged as a result of an epoch-making event on an international scale that has suddenly wiped out the deleterious effects of those who administered Venice in recent decades.
In my artistic career, which began exactly 20 years ago, I have already tackled themes related to my city: the installation Le Nostre Idee Vinceranno at Museo Mocenigo in 2002, or the public art intervent Pulse Red at Punta della Dogana in 2004 and Pulse Red as video installation at Fontego dei Tedeschi in 2009; but it is with the installation project The Rape of Venice in 2015 for the MUVE Contemporaneo exhibition for the Venice Biennale, which clearly addressed the theme of the city's decline and its inevitable end if the tendency to exploit it in the harshest way was not drastically reversed.
A final consideration on the title Venezia Anno Zero: it is clearly an evocative quotation of Rossellini's neo-realistic masterpiece Germania Anno Zero, whose shots are not only poetic but express a vision of the soul of the city and its remaining inhabitants from which it is hoped a virtuous path can be started that reverses the self-destructive trend that has characterised Venice's history in recent years. 

Although I have a lot of experience with photography, I used video in this case. Filming, video tracking shots and related recordings of sounds such as seagulls screeching, pigeons cooing, water lapping or voices and music coming from the houses can express the feelings in this situation more than photography.
The Venezia Anno Zero short film was awarded a prize at the 17th edition of the Francesco Pasinetti video competition presented during the 2020 Venice Film Festival by the >>> Veneto Region.

A selection of twenty images is part of >>> Ocean Archive, a digital platform that fosters synergy between art, science and politics to make visible, identifiable and understandable a range of perspectives to address the planet's climate crisis.

Participation with a series of photographic triptychs extrapolated from the videos in a group exhibition >>> In My Town organised by the Centro Fotografico Cagliari and curated by Roberta Vanali, with the participation of Italian photographers who documented/interpreted their cities during the lockdown.

>>> In Time Magazine, published by Linea d'acqua presents an exceptional glossy paper insert with a selection of images extrapolated from the short with a text by historian and writer Alberto Toso Fei.
The continued imposition of lockdown periods in Italy until Spring 2021 meant that Morucchio continued to shoot in Venice, thus gathering enough material to more fully develop the >>> Venezia Anno Zero Project