Arts Of The Working Class Logo

IF BODY: Living Fragments

Festival Locales

  • Event
  • Jun 18 2024 | 12:00 AM h - 12:00 AM h

From 18 June to 12 October 2024 in Rome.

LOCALES presents If Body 2024, a visual and performance art program curated by Sara Alberani, Marta Federici, and Chiara Siravo (LOCALES), which extends across the city of Rome, focusing on the body both as artistic language and methodological starting point for experience-based, participatory learning.

The title draws inspiration from a note in Lauren Berlant’s Cruel Optimism where, in the appendix of the book, the author explores the potentials of the body starting from an “if” which evokes the infinite shapes and possibilities that come with corporeality as a site of affect, resistance, and struggle. The program comprises six newly produced, site-specific events, which include exhibitions, installations, moments of collective learning, and performances, involving artists from the national and international panorama. Following the first edition, which took place in Rome during the summer of 2023, this second iteration of If Body brings workshops, urban walks, and participative activities into focus, further expanding LOCALES’ commitment to collective forms of engaging with art.

If Body 2024 is born out of an urge to react to the risk of annihilation generated by violence, forms of oppression, and the failures of so-called civilization. In this scenario of material and symbolic destruction, which threatens the existence of communal life as well as relational experiences in the present, the body becomes a territory of constant hardship, lacerated by pain and profound unease. The subtitle of the program, Living Fragments, picks up on the words of Lebanese poet and artist Etel Adnan who, in a 1990 letter to her friend, the writer Fawwaz Traboulsi, reflects on the difficulties in imagining an individual or collective future. She writes: “I tell myself that we are terrorists, not terrorists in the political and ordinary sense of the word, but because we carry inside of our bodies – like explosives – all the deep troubles that befall our countries (...) We are the scribes of a scattered self, living fragments as if the parts of the self were writing down the bits and ends of perception never complete.”

In adhering to a relinquishment of wholeness as a strategy of openness towards all that which is outside or other to the self, Living Fragments seeks to investigate the potentials of this state of fragmentation as a condition from which to begin anew: to envision new systems through which to organize meaning and new ways of being in the world that recognize the different forms of trauma and loss that bodies experience. If Body in fact works with the belief that the body—understood both as individual and as a body of bodies—intersects everything, and everything intersects the body: in and around it are scattered fragments born out of overlapping temporalities and geographies. Living Fragments is thus an attempt to gather these traces and give voice to a network of bodies who are, in different ways, attempting to gather the ghosts of unacknowledged or unborn pasts that live, fragment-like in the material present.

Each project presented in the program investigates the value of personal experience, the tensions between history and memory, the ideologically manipulative nature of grand narratives, epistemic violence, and systems of codification. These inquiries experiment with collective practice and explore art as a potential vehicle to open up spaces for sharing and collaboration, critical thinking, and action. The invited artists draw from and employ fragments as the building blocks of alternative forms of communication and archiving, mutual learning practices, and knowledge production: subversions that are geared towards unmasking as well as undoing the violent and inadequate hegemonies intent on perpetually devouring the seeds of plurality and possibility. Temporal and spatial hierarchies are questioned and rearranged, brought closer to affect, in an effort to reclaim control of knowledge, of the economic and the political, as well as over sensory perception, on the part of the bodies that experience it.

All events are open to all and free of charge.

Events' Calendar:

18 – 19 June 2024, 14:30 – 18:00
The Community Whistling Choir
Workshop by Aliaskar Abarkas
Biblioteca Casanatense, Via di Sant’Ignazio, 52, Rome

26 June – 7 September 2024
Storage Almost Full: the Clouds Have Fallen
Solo exhibition by Soukaina Abrour
Opening 26 June, 18:00 – 21:00
Lateral Roma, Via Ferdinando Ughelli, 28, Rome

27 June, 17:30 – 19:00
A Collection in Turmoil III – Infrastruttura
Talk with Sheherazade Mahassini, Adelita Husni Bey,
and Giulia Beatrice
Museo delle Civiltà, Piazza Guglielmo Marconi, 14, Rome

06 – 07 September 2024
Sound Installation by Aliaskar Abarkas
Short Theatre Festival, Pelanda (Mattatoio)
Piazza Orazio Giustiniani, 4, Rome

11 – 13 September 2024
A Collection in Turmoil III – Vulnerable Infrastructure
Workshop by Adelita Husni Bey
Museo delle Civiltà, Piazza Guglielmo Marconi, 14, Rome

14 September 2024
School of Intrusions
Itinerary workshop by Noor Abed e Lara Khaldi
Short Theatre Festival, Quartiere Testaccio (several places), Rome

12 October 2024
Performance by Emily Jacir and Michael Rakowitz

For more info visit:





To improve our website for you, please allow a cookie from Google Analytics to be set.

Basic cookies that are necessary for the correct function of the website are always set.

The cookie settings can be changed at any time on the Date Privacy page.