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Index

1.- Exhibition credits ................................................................................................... 3

2.- Presentation .......................................................................................................... 4

3.- Exhibition texts ....................................................................................................... 9

4.- Film Dietro il buio ................................................................................................. 19

5.- Claudio Magris ................................................................................................................. 20

6.- CV of the curator ........................................................................................................... 21

7.- General information ............................................................................................ 22




                                                                                                                                          2
1.- EXHIBITION CREDITS

«LA TRIESTE DE MAGRIS» is a production of the Centre de Cultura Contemporània de
Barcelona (CCCB), with the sponsorship of Gas Natural Fenosa and El País. It will run at
the CCCB from 9 March to 17 July 2011

Curator
Giorgio Pressburger

Space Design
Paola Navone, Rune Ricciardelli and Giulia Minozzi (Otto Studio, Milano)

Coordination
Liliana Antoniucci and Mònica Ibàñez

Documentation
Liliana Antoniucci
With the collaboration of Alessia Biasatto, Carlota Broggi and Candela Carrera

Graphic Desing
Cromazoo (Milà)

Photography
Alessandro Paderni, Eye Udine, Monika Bulaj

Film “Dietro il buio”
Director: Giorgio Pressburger
Screenplay: Giorgio Pressburger and Paolo Magris
Productor: Sine Sole Cinema (Gorizia) and CCCB
Executive Productor: Mattia Vecchi
Main Actress: Sarah Maestri
Actor: Gabriele Geri
Photography: Giovanni Ziberna
Audio: Carlo Missidenti

 Audiovisuals
Laura de Bonis
Wiht the collaboration of Laura Torres and Adriana Conde

Audiovisual “La Bora”
Neus Ballús

The Danube
Design
Dora D. Pawlowsky iand Estudi Roseta i Oihana
Music: Xavier Maristany




                                                                                       3
2.- PRESENTATION


The CCCB presents the exhibition “The Trieste of Magris” from 9 March to 17 July
2011. It is a production of the Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona with the
sponsorship of Gas Natural Fenosa and El País newspaper.

Picking up the thread of the “Cities and their Writers” series that the CCCB began a few
years ago, this exhibition is an invitation to discover the city of Trieste, guided by the
Trieste-born writer Claudio Magris and his books.

Trieste is a border city, a mix of languages and cultures: Italian, Germanic and Slavic. Its
unique geopolitical location has marked its character throughout its history, up until
the present day.

This Italian city is known and renowned for having been the birthplace or home of
some of the foremost writers and intellectuals of recent centuries: Italo Svevo,
Umberto Saba, Rainer Maria Rilke, Scipio Slataper, James Joyce…

In this exhibition, Claudio Magris is the leading thread and point of connection with his
city. Magris’s extraordinary and complex texts often refer to Trieste, its personages,
both anonymous and famous, to the history of the city and to the writer’s own
memories. The exhibition curator, Italian theatre director Giorgio Pressburger, a good
friend of Magris and, like him, Trieste-born, has stepped into Magris’s body of work to
bring it to life. The result is the exhibition “THE TRIESTE OF MAGRIS”, now presented
at the CCCB, designed by Paola Navone (Otto Studio, Milan).

Visitors need all five senses to find their way round the exhibition. They will feel the
force of the bora, Trieste’s wind, feel the stones of the Karst Plateau and sense the
Adriatic Sea, be surprised by the clamour of war and listen to Triestine songs. They can
sit in the famous Caffè San Marco and enter the well-known Antiquaria bookshop, and
follow the Danube, in the form of an evocation of its course through Central Europe, in
a reading of excerpts from Magris’s famous book of the same name.

The show includes a whole range of materials, from audiovisual installations, original
objects and paintings to readings of literary passages and even a film, Dietro il buio
(Behind the Darkness), specially produced on the basis of Magris’s text, Lei dunque
capirà.




                                                                                           4
LAYOUT OF THE EXHIBITION

0.- Introduction
1.- The bora
2.- The Karst
3.- Nowhere
4.- The house
5.- The exhibition
6.- Marco Cavallo
7.- Piazza Unità
8.- Italo Svevo
9.- Caffè San Marco
10.- Antiquaria bookshop
11.- La Risiera
12.- The Danube
13.- Psychoanalysis
14.- Religions
15.- Behind the Darkness
16.- Secular immigrants
17.- Dawn and dusk
18.- Nowhere, no when


0 – Introduction
This space welcomes visitors and introduces them to the world they are about to
enter: that of a highly singular city and its relation with some of Europe’s foremost
writers, including its representative par excellence, Claudio Magris.

1 – The bora
This is the wind that blows in Trieste and the surrounding area. The bora rises in the
Julian Alps and blows down from the mountains towards the sea at speeds of up to
119 mph.

2 – The Karst
Here visitors will find stones from the Karst, brought specially for the exhibition from
the mountains around Trieste. They are stones that have been worn by the water on
the original limestone and dolomite ground of the place. The Karst is where the people
of Trieste go on Sundays and the setting for historic events associated with World War I.

3 – Nowhere
Trieste, 200 years ago, was the laboratory for a new Europe, which today we term
“multiethnic”, with no internal boundaries between its different peoples. As a result of
this ethnic mix, more than one artist and thinker has referred to this city as “nowhere”.




                                                                                        5
4 – The house
This space reproduces the living room in the house of Claudio Magris. It contains his
everyday objects, his life from childhood to adulthood, the way he worked almost in
symbiosis with Marisa Madieri, his lifelong companion.

5 – The exhibition
On show are drawings by Vito Timmel, the Trieste-born painter who lived in the first
half of the 20th century and died in the city’s psychiatric hospital city at the end of
World War II. The drawings were made while he was in hospital; as he completed
them, Timmel passed them on to his friend Sofianopulo, who was looking after him.
The play by Claudio Magris, La mostra, is based on the life of this artist, though it is
also about Trieste and Magris himself.

6 – Marco Cavallo
In the 1970s, the Venetian psychiatrist Franco Basaglia, then director of the San
Giovanni Psychiatric Hospital in Trieste, revolutionized the world of modern psychiatry.
He was responsible for introducing a new conception of mental illness, and new
methods and therapies for treating patients.
One day in February 1973, the Marco Cavallo, a blue horse thought up by the patients
at San Giovanni Hospital, walked out of the psychiatric centre and entered the city of
Trieste. By means of this action, encouraged by the Mayor of Trieste, Michele Zanetti,
the writer Giuliano Scabia and Basaglia’s collaborators, the patients regained a place in
society.

7 – Piazza Unità
Trieste is home to what was one of the most representative squares in Italy in the early
20th century: the Piazza Unità, or Square of the Unity of Italy. Here, the city people
come together and meet at the Caffè degli Spechi, against the backdrop of the sea.

8 – Italo Svevo
The family of the writer Svevo came from a small village in Transylvania. In Trieste, he
married the daughter of a manufacturer of a boat varnish, for whom he worked until
the end of his life.
This factory, which still exists, gave him many ideas for his best-known work, La
coscienza di Zeno, which today is known worldwide. He owes much of his fame to his
Irish friend, James Joyce. Joyce lived in Trieste for 14 years and became good friends
with Svevo.
This part of the exhibition deals with Svevo, James Joyce’s years in Trieste and the
friendship between the two writers.

9 – Caffè San Marco
The most famous café in Trieste is the place where some of Magris’s best-known books
were thought out and written. The space recreates the Caffè San Marco, the décor of
which remains practically unchanged since it opened in 1914, and invites visitors to
take a break and browse through Magris’s books.


                                                                                        6
7
10 – The Antiquaria bookshop
This space is dedicated to Umberto Saba, one of the greatest Italian poets of the 20th
century. It includes a reproduction of the Antiquaria bookshop, owned by Saba. It also
includes a text by Claudio Magris about the poet’s private life, excerpts from a film
inspired by Saba’s posthumous novel (Ernesto) and a poetry reading given by Magris
himself.

11 – La Risiera
In 1913, in a neighbourhood of Trieste called San Sabba, a construction was built for
cleaning and preparing rice for human consumption. Thirty years later, after
modifications carried out by the Nazis, it became a transit camp on the way to the
crematoria of the Third Reich in Germany and Poland, and later into a camp with its
own crematorium.
Today, La Risiera is a national monument. Visitors can see the cells where prisoners
were tortured, detained, dissolved in acid or reduced to ashes, and the remains of the
crematoria that the Nazis blew up when they retreated, to destroy any evidence.

12 – The Danube
Claudio Magris’s master work, one of the fundamental books of 20th-century culture,
bears the name of central Europe’s main river: the Danube. This book follows the
history and culture of Mitteleuropa, along the twists and turns of the river. From its
uncertain source to its mouth, it flows through cities, regions and countries, but also
history and histories, past and present, real characters and collective myths, great
works in the European canon and oral legend and popular anecdote.

13 – Psychoanalysis
The first Italian city where psychoanalysis became known and was introduced into the
praxis of city life was Trieste. From there, the practice spread throughout the country.
The founder of psychoanalysis, Sigmund Freud, had a particularly devoted and active
disciple, Trieste-born Edoardo Weiss, who attended the first sessions of the Vienna
Psychoanalytic Society. When Weiss returned to Trieste, he devoted his entire life to
psychoanalysis. His patients included many Triestine artists and intellectuals, such as
Arturo Nathan and Umberto Saba.

14 – Religions
Trieste is a city of absolute religious tolerance. Catholic, Protestant, Adventist,
Orthodox, Jewish, Muslim, Jehovah’s Witnesses and Buddhist—people of every
religious persuasion live there. There are nine different cemeteries, temples and
churches for all these confessions.

15 – Behind the darkness
Dietro il buio, made specially for the exhibition, is an adaptation of Claudio Magris’s
monologue Lei dunque capirà. It is a highly personal text that he wrote in memory of
his life partner, the writer Marisa Madieri. The film is a co-production by an Italian film
production company and the CCCB.


                                                                                         8
9
16 – Secular immigrants
This part of the exhibition documents the arrival of Italians who emigrated from Istria
in 1954, when the city became part of Yugoslavia, and deals with the Slovene minority
in Trieste.

17 – Dawn and dusk
A stage set reproduces the sky of Trieste at dusk and at dawn, created by the interplay
of light.

18 – Nowhere, no when
Trieste has once again become nowhere in particular. It is a mix of many different
places. Where are we? China? Africa? Japan? Serbia, Romania, Albania? The exhibition
closes with an allusion to the Trieste of today, a real cosmopolitan mix that manages
not to lose its own particular identity.




                                                                                     10
3.-EXHIBITION TEXTS


Introduction

The funicular tramway runs from the centre of Trieste to the little village called
Opicina, from where the entire city can be viewed along with the gulf opening out over
the Adriatic sea, Slovenia and part of Friuli. Trieste is situated between the sea, the
mountains (the famous Karst) and the start of Eastern Europe, the huge oriental world,
across Asia, to China.

Trieste has become a legend because it was birthplace or home to some of the most
famous writers of the last two centuries: Stendhal, Italo Svevo, James Joyce, and
Rainer Maria Rilke to name just a few. And also because Claudio Magris was born there
and lives there.

Furthermore, there are musicians, painters and architects who have shared Trieste’s
particular atmosphere, history, and life, the tradition of its cafés, of bathing in the sea,
of its theatres. One only has to think of this city in the mid-18th century, when
representatives of many European peoples established themselves there, some to
carry out trading activities, or to set up small or large factories, or alternatively
dockyards, and others to find work, or a place where a certain spirit of freedom
reigned. Trieste was the melting pot where multi-ethnic European society, which has
still not reached maturity today, was experienced for the first time.

However in the real city it is important to be alert to one characteristic of Trieste: the
famous bora wind that gushes from the mountain to the Adriatic sea. Trieste is also
famous for its gulf, for its sea water, for the stones of the Karst, for its air and for the
splendour of its ever-changing and always new sky.


The bora

The bora is a wind, a natural phenomenon unique to Trieste and a few other places in
the surrounding region. The people of Trieste like the bora’s happy blustering and, if it
doesn’t blow enough in the winter, they feel that they miss it.

Instructions for walking when the bora is blowing:

Pedestrians should walk quickly and hold on to the ropes. If not, the wind may blow
them into the sea, into the middle of the road, and to other places which they had no
intention of visiting.

The bora is born in the Julian Alps and gusts down from the mountains towards the
sea. It whips up the sea and leads boats astray.


                                                                                          11
It is an intermittent wind: it blows in gusts called refoli, followed by intervals of calm
with no wind at all.

In Trieste, in autumn and winter, the bora blows on one day in every four.

Bora chiara: with a clear sky. Bora scura: with a cloudy sky.

10 March 2010: the bora reached speeds of 116 miles per hour, taking with it roofs,
uprooting trees and dragging away cars.

In Trieste, on days when the bora blows, ropes are put up in the streets so that people
can hold on to them.


The Karst

The stones that you can see here have been brought from the Triestine Karst, from the
hilltops and mountains that surround Trieste. They are stones that are worked, jaded,
perforated by the water in the original lime soil and in the dolomitic soil of this place.

The Karst is the place where inhabitants of Trieste, of all ages, go on Sundays to walk
or hike. And they love these rocks and these forests almost as much as they love the
sea.

Water and stone. The Karst is one of the strangest, most interesting and most
mysterious landscapes on earth. The limestone rocks dissolved by water eventually
form cavities, caverns and chasms that form part of the legend of this formation. But
there are also rivers that run towards the underground depths and then emerge many
miles further down.

During the First World War, terrible and bloody battles took place on the Karst. In one
of these battles, the Italo-Croatian poet Scipio Slataper, author of a great poem in
prose titled Il mio Carso, was killed. His letters to three lady friends, all in love with
him, have long formed part of the legend of this young man who died for Italy, for the
great myth of this country.

Another particularity of the Triestine Karst are the foibas (foibe, from the Latin fovea,
‘cavity’ or ‘pit’). These broad, deep fissures in the Karstic terrain were sites of
execution of many Triestians at the end of the Second World War, when citizens
suspected or accused of being fascists were thrown into them alive by Tito’s Partisans.

In recent years, the Karst has been a point for the transit of clandestine immigrants
(many of them Africans), transported by smugglers at night and often abandoned
completely alone in the midst of the forest.




                                                                                        12
The nowhere

Two hundred years ago Trieste was the melting pot of a new Europe that today would
receive the name of “multi-ethnic”: without interior frontiers between the different
peoples. Because of this ethnic mix, more than one artist and one thinker have called
this city the nowhere.

Effectively, visitors over the last two centuries have had to make an effort to
understand where they were. In Italy? In Austria? In Bohemia? In Greece? In Turkey?
They had no certainty or immediate clues. Initially that could disorient them somewhat
but, after the initial uncertainty, it was also the place’s main charm. Not being from
anywhere: having no frontiers, no prejudices, no enemies: remaining suspended in this
nowhere (Jan Morris), in this non luogo (Claudio Magris), in this limbo where
everything was possible.

In this limbo, thanks precisely to the possibilities of this mixture, a major culture was
born, one of the most interesting in Europe. The events of the 20th century, little by
little, annulled this aspect of the history of Trieste and transformed the city into the
contrary of what it had been: it became a place of racism (it was here that Mussolini
proclaimed the Racial Laws of 1938), of bloody combats, of hatred, denunciations and
everything that the worst of instincts dictate to humankind.

Today Trieste is fortunately no longer like that. Furthermore, on several occasions it
has ranked as Italy’s first city in terms of quality of life.


The house

The reading and critical examination of a literary work always lead to an encounter
between human beings: between the reader, the author and the characters. It is not
only readers who read books, but books also read their readers, scrutinising life,
events, thoughts and feelings. In our view, the true essence of literature is this mutual
implication, this reciprocal understanding between human beings. In this regard,
seeing the belongings that a human life, that of the author, leaves us, makes effective
what a book does in abstract: establishment of a dialogue.

Focusing intently on the life of Claudio Magris, on his everyday objects, on his history
from childhood to adulthood, on his way of working – almost in symbiosis with his
wife, Marisa Madieri, also a highly regarded author – all this, will continue the dialogue
begun through his books. Magris’s works have been published in many languages, in
the most diverse of countries: his dialogue is with a large number of people, as is the
case with all great writers.




                                                                                        13
La mostra

The drawings of an artist who was well known in Trieste, who lived there during the
first half of the 20th century and died at the city’s famous psychiatric hospital in 1949,
are rather surprising and moving. Vito Timmel produced his drawings day after day,
during the time he was hospitalised, and he released them as he drew them for his
friend, Sofianopulo, who looked after him.

Claudio Magris wrote a play for theatre with the title La mostra (originally conceived as
an opera libretto for composer Fabio Nieder) in which he talks about Trieste, the
history of the city, Vito Timmel and himself. “It is my most autobiographical work”,
wrote Magris, and effectively Timmel and he were united by the fact that both lost
their wives at a young age. In truly moving and poignant scenes, the main character of
the play – which is set in the psychiatric hospital – produces, as best he can, a
summary of his life. He does it in an unconnected, fragmented way, as his mental
instability allows him.


Marco Cavallo

The work of Venetian psychiatrist Franco Basaglia, who was director of the San
Giovanni Psychiatric Hospital in Trieste, represented an important moment in the
history of Italy and of Europe. It introduced into our Western culture a new conception
of mental illnesses, of illness in general and of the attitude towards this aspect of life
of the individual and of the human community.

Basaglia promoted an important renovation of both asylums and psychiatric
treatments, which no longer envisaged the forced admission of patients but rather
their care in hospital structures and the offering of different therapies. In addition,
numerous social and cultural activities were introduced, such as theatre, painting and
general animation workshops.

Thus, in the 1970s, the psychiatric hospital in Trieste was a centre for the development
of new ideas and revolutionary actions. The mayor at the time, Michele Zanetti, the
writer Giuliano Scabia (who directed the construction of Marco Cavallo), and the
collaborators of Basaglia breathed life into a global movement.

A symbol of this liberation was the famous Marco Cavallo, designed by patients in
memory of a little horse that distributed bedclothes to the wards. An entire retinue of
them accompanied it down to the centre of the city, like a new Trojan horse, with
which the patients, after thousands of years of segregation and ill-treatment, would
reconquer a place among human beings.




                                                                                        14
Piazza Unità

Trieste is home to what was one of the most representative squares in Italy in the early
20th century: the Pizza Unità, or Unity of Italy Square. Here water, stone and fire (the
sky always changing between calm and flaming), meet in a simple yet simultaneously
complicated synthesis. Here, on Sundays, city residents gather together to chat for a
while and enjoy, at the Caffé degli Spechi, the happy flight of the pigeons that,
sometimes, pose peacefully on the tables lined up outside the premises. The noise of
the sea, the chatting of the people, the songs, envelop the square in an atmosphere
that takes one away of normal everyday existence.

But historical events also take place here, some pleasant and others unpleasant, often
like life itself. Here, on windy days, the bora throws people around with no chance of
resistance. But the sea is what dominates the square even at night. An ingenious
architect, fifteen years ago, organised for this area of stone to be flanked by blue
lampposts fixed to the ground which, with their light, seem to unite the square with
the Adriatic: life with its liquid matrix.


Italo Svevo

The family of writer Italo Svevo came from a small village in Transylvania: Kipsa Mica,
or in Hungarian Kiskapus. They were called Schmitz – Italo Svevo is the pseudonym
that was used by Hector Schmitz: Italo because he wrote in Italian, Svevo because he
had studied in Germany and in Austria, in the German language. In Trieste he married
the daughter of a wealthy industrial producer of antifouling varnishes for boats. He
worked for this company, La Veneziani, until the end of his life.

This factory, which still exists, gave him a lot of ideas to write his most famous work: La
coscienza di Zeno, which today is known worldwide and is one of the basic works of
20th-century literature. A novel that is the confession of the protagonist, written, in
the story, upon the orders of a professor of psychoanalysis (professor S.). Sigmund
Freud? Or perhaps the Triestine psychoanalyst Edoardo Weiss who we will be meeting
later?


Caffè San Marco

The Caffè San Marco is the most famous café of all the historical cafés of Trieste. The
decor of the premises has been maintained practically intact from the year in which it
was inaugurated, 1914, and until a few years ago, in the coffee lounge, it was possible
to see the medallions painted by Vito Timmel. This cafe is the place where some of
Magris’s most famous books have been conceived and written, as well as his play La
mostra, whose protagonist is the painter Timmel.



                                                                                         15
A city may be the father (or the mother) of a great writer, just as he (or she) may be
the father or mother of a city, in a certain era. We can think of Goldoni and Venice, or
Dante and Florence, Pasolini and Rome, and, also now, of Magris and Trieste. The dark
wood furniture, the golden friezes, the table at which Magris writes and which in other
eras was sat at by writer Giorgio Voghera, now form a part of this city, just like the
bora, the sea and the sky. In literature there are paternal authors, who take the reader
by the hand (Leo Tolstoy, Thomas Mann) and filial writers (Franz Kafka, Heinrich von
Kleist), but in the relationship between writers and their city, both are both things.


Libreria Antiquaria

Umberto Saba was the son of a Jewish woman called Felicita Rachele Coen, the relative
of a world-renowned rabbi called Shadal (Samuel David Luzzato), and of Italian
craftsman Ugo Edoardo Poli.

For forty years Saba was the owner of the Libreria Antiquaria, the “black and dark
cavern” that fed him, with more or less dignity, during all those years and which is still
open to the public today.

Saba’s prose and poetry, with their musicality and simplicity, their proximity to the
“warm life” represent the maximum linguistic achievements of Italian, a language that
until a hundred years ago was only used by a tiny part of the inhabitants of the
peninsula, who communicated with each other only in dialect. This language, the
Tuscan language of the 13th century, chosen as the official and literary language in the
16th century, with Saba becomes the language of everyone, not only of a small ruling
class.

This is the revolutionary achievement of a poet born on the margins of a kingdom and
this is the destiny and the great landmark of frontier literature, in which any individual
choice (linguistic, of thinking, political, social) becomes a symbol. The plain, solar and
often painful language of the poet Umberto Saba, friend of poets and artists, is the
language of suffering and of love for life.


La Risiera

In 1913, in a neighbourhood of Trieste called San Sabba, an establishment was built
designed for cleaning and preparing rice for consumption. There is still an idyllic image
of the place in existence. Some thirty years later, with the modifications carried out by
the Nazis, it became a transit camp en route to the crematory ovens of the Third Reich
in Germany and Poland, and later, the only extermination and elimination camp, with
its own crematory furnace, in Italy.

Today it is a national monument. Visitors can see the cells of torture, detention, death
and dissolution in acid, reduction of bodies to ashes (when they retreated, the Nazis
blew up crematory furnaces so as to destroy any evidence). Many signatures and

                                                                                        16
inscriptions were left on the walls of the cells, messages to families, to survivors, but
the victorious Anglo-American military had then quickly erased. No trace was left for
posterity.

No more words can be said here. Images are also like words. Are monuments of this
kind useful? Do they serve as a warning? Only compassion and reflection remain.


The Danube

The Danube, which seems so far away from here, is one of the largest rivers i Europe.
Along its course towns, capitals and villages have been born, constructed by different
cultures who alternated in that central, eastern and southern part of our continent,
and gave rise to what receives the name of “Danubian civilisation”. This part of the
world, since the time it was a colony and place for exile from ancient Rome, has had an
increasingly important function in history: wars have taken place here that have
littered it with dead and ashes, and to mention some, both of the world wars of the
20th century, the most cruel and ferocious of all time, began precisely in that area. The
modern world was also born, to a great extent, here: modern sciences such as biology,
physics, medicine and communication began and were developed in these lands to
later be exported worldwide.

The famous Mitteleuropa or Central Europe founded its imperial domain there, the
Habsburgs reigned there for seven centuries and extended their power halfway around
Europe to Spain. But the culture and praxis of the “Communist bloc countries” also had
their domain and their testing bed there. They arrived in the hands of a great military
power, that of the Soviet Union. Like the empires of the reigning lineages, of the
Communist society, all that remains are the ashes, the marks of the crumbling, the
marks of the fleeting duration of the historic events.

The great book by Claudio Magris, one of the fundamental books of 20th century
culture, bears the name of the main river of central Europe: Danube. This book, which
tours the twists and turns of time, summarises the history of that civilisation, the book
itself is like a river.

Twenty years have passed since the publication of Magris’s Danube. In this time lapse
Danubian culture and the river itself have changed: the collapse of the authentic Soviet
empire, the poisoning and momentary disappearance of the utopia of a fair and caring
society, without exploitation, have left behind their ruins and miasmas, but also the
possibility of the formulation of a new world. Which? We do not yet know.


Psychoanalysis


The first Italian city where psychoanalysis was known and accepted, and introduced
into the praxis of civilian life, was Trieste. From there, this practice expanded and
spread throughout the entire country. The founder of psychoanalysis, Sigmund Freud,

                                                                                       17
had as a particularly devoted and active disciple Triestine resident Edoardo Weiss. A
member of the Viennese Psychoanalytical Association – which had its origin in the
Wednesday Society founded by Freud in 1902 – he was co-founder of the Italian
Psychoanalysis Society in 1932.



After graduating in Vienna in 1914, Weiss returned to Trieste and dedicated his whole
life to this science-nonscience, to this deep assumption of responsibility towards
patients, people who were ill and abandoned by the asylums system

Psychoanalysis, which invited patients to seek the sources of their suffering,
represented a genuine revolution in the life of the Western culture. Its practice, more
over, was hindered by the great dictatorships of the 20th century using all means, from
prohibition to personal annihilation.
The true great novel on the bourgeoisie of the 20th century was written by the first
psychoanalysts, mainly among others, by Freud and Ferenczi.



Religions

Trieste is a city of absolute religious tolerance. Catholics, evangelists, Adventists,
Orthodox, Jews, Muslims, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Buddhists, Hindus, animists and
atheists all live there. There are nine different cemeteries, temples and churches for all
these confessions.

The entire 19th century rolled by with the greatest tolerance possible thanks, in part,
to the edict passed by Joseph II of Habsburg at the end of the 18th century. The
tolerance edict implied the recognition of and respect for all religions. Very few
countries in Europe or indeed worldwide have carried out this experiment successfully.
Trieste is proud of having done so. Unfortunately however, it was in this city that the
promulgation of the racial laws was publicly announced in 1938 and the crematorium
furnace of the Risiera of San Sabba was built here.

However the vocation of the people of Trieste, by history and by nature, is not racist at
all. The dark pages of the Second World War, the multisecular persecution of the
Slovenians, and later of Jews and people of other confessions, and the Foibe
massacres, do not belong to the spirit of the people of Trieste.


Behind the darkness

Dietro il buio, a film made for this exhibition, is freely inspired by the theatrical
monologue by Claudio Magris titled Lei dunque capirà.

A single character addresses an entity that does not appear onscreen, the president,
Mr. President. The character, a woman, is at a rest home from which there is no

                                                                                        18
return. However, only in her case, she has been given a discharge. She can return to
the world. Who requested authorisation? Probably the “husband” of this woman, an
uneasy poet who carries within a thirst for the truth. She will explain to the president
how, despite the extraordinary permit she has been granted, she has decided to
remain here forever, while her husband returns to life. The woman confesses that she
would not have been able to bear her husband’s anguish and the very impossibility of
satisfying his thirst for the truth

Magris’s text is an emotive and painful confession about his life seen with the eyes,
intelligence and feelings of the person that he loved and who is no longer alive. There
is a vague shadow of the ancient myth of Orpheus, but this is not just a modern
version of it; it goes far beyond that: here we find the story of a terribly moving life
experience and the greatness of a poet.

Secular immigrants

The furniture and clothes of the Italians of Istria, piled up in warehouses and still intact
today, have something about them sinisterly reminiscent of the gargantuan
installations of French-Ukrainian painter Christian Boltansky. That clothing belonged to
the Italians who emigrated from Istria in 1954, after the London Memorandum of
Understanding signed by Italy, Yugoslavia, Great Britain and the United States. These
people feared riots and reprisals of an ethnic-racial or political type. They fled en
masse from lands that now belong to Slovenia and Croatia. Who are the Istrians? What
are their traditions? What was Istria like before and what is it like now?

Moreover, the Slovenian national minority in Trieste, today integrated into the social
context of the city, has suffered persecution and exclusion at different moments in its
history. In 1920, in the heart of Trieste, their “People’s House”, the Narodni dom, was
torched by the Fascists and, in Nazi times, many Slovenians died at the Risiera in San
Sabba.

Works such as those of the Istrian writers Marisa Madieri and Fulvio Tomizza, which
reflect the exodus from their community, as well as Slovenian writers Boris Pahor,
Srecko Kosovel, Alojz Rebula, and the composer Pavle Merkù, form part of the cultural
representation of this multi-ethnic soul that is unique to Trieste.

Sunrise and sunset

The sky of Trieste at sunset or sunrise emits special glows difficult to distinguish from
each other. For this reason, in this city, time too is a strange non-time. What time am I
at now? In the 14th century? In the 18th? During the era of Habsburg domination, or
of Anglo-American or Yugoslavian domination, or at a time in which it is difficult to
know anything about the time? The glow of the dawn and the sunset cannot be
distinguished from each other. We might just as well be at the dawn of this city as at
the twilight of this city. Dawns and twilights have alternated in the destiny of Trieste.
Even now there is a calm, resigned, and simultaneously active wait, full of hope after
the new united Europe and the abolition of borders. This alternation of the end and
the beginning make the existence of Trieste a continually new possibility. Magris also

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talks   about   this.




                  20
No where, no when

In Trieste many diverse populations are mixed again. Where are we? In China? In
Africa? In Japan? In Serbia, in Romania or in Albania? Ah, Trieste! Trieste, where
everything ends and everything begins again, where even time is a non-time, because
you don’t know what time you are living in, whether snippets of the past, a
fragmentary present or alternatively a future in which the “here” could be a distant
reality that embraces the entire globe. We are not only at the frontier where diverse
cultures converge, but in a place where one can even study, among other subjects,
astrophysics, whether the universe is infinite or whether it has some limit. It is also for
this reason that this beautiful city on the Adriatic, so different from other beautiful
Mediterranean cities, has become a mythical legend. But not with the distance and the
abstraction of legends, but with an everyday, agitated and full “warm life” (Umberto
Saba).
Have you not seen the city yet? Then do think about making this trip.




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4.- FILM DIETRO IL BUIO


Dietro il buio, a film by Giorgio Pressburger made for th exhibition LA TRIESTE DE
MAGRIS, is freely inspired by the theatrical monologue by Claudio Magris titled Lei
dunque capirà.

A single character addresses an entity that does not appear onscreen, the president,
Mr. President. The character, a woman, is at a rest home from which there is no
return. However, only in her case, she has been given a discharge. She can return to
the world. Who requested authorisation? Probably the “husband” of this woman, an
uneasy poet who carries within a thirst for the truth. She will explain to the president
how, despite the extraordinary permit she has been granted, she has decided to
remain here forever, while her husband returns to life. The woman confesses that she
would not have been able to bear her husband’s anguish and the very impossibility of
satisfying his thirst for the truth.

Magris’s text is an emotive and painful confession about his life seen with the eyes,
intelligence and feelings of the person that he loved and who is no longer alive. There
is a vague shadow of the ancient myth of Orpheus, but this is not just a modern
version of it; it goes far beyond that: here we find the story of a terribly moving life
experience and the greatness of a poet.


Fact Sheet

Director: Giorgio Pressburger
Screenplay: Giorgio Pressburger and Paolo Magris
Productor: Sine Sole Cinema (Gorizia) and CCCB
Executive Productor: Mattia Vecchi
Main Actress: Sarah Maestri
Actor: Gabriele Geri
Photography: Giovanni Ziberna
Audio: Carlo Missidenti

2011
70’




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5.- CLAUDIO MAGRIS


Writer, professor of German Literature at the University of Trieste


Born in Trieste on 10 April 1939, Magris has lectured in German literature at the
universities of Turin, Trieste and some other German universities. he has also taught
European literature at the Collège de France and has given a number of conference
series and master classes at universities in several countries around the world. He is a
member of a number of academies. He's been a regular columnist for the Corriere
della sera for 43 years now and has collaborated with many other Italian and European
publications.



Magris has received eight degrees honoris causa from different universities around the
world, including the Complutense in Madrid (2006) and has been awarded many
literary awards, including France’s Best foreign book award - Prix du meilleur livre
étranger (1990), the Strega Prize (1997), the Erasmum Prize (2001), the Kingdom of
Redonda Award (2003), the Prince of Asturias Award (2004), the Austrian State Prize
for European Literature (2005), the Kythera Award (2007); the Terenci Moix lifetime
achievement award (Barcelona, 2008); the Walter-Hallstein Prize (2008), and the Peace
Prize of the German Book Trade (2009).



His most essential titles comprise the following: Il mito absburgico nella letteratura
austriaca moderna, 1963; Lontano da dove. Joseph Roth e la tradizione ebraico-
orientale, 1971; Itaca e oltre, 1982; L'anello di Clarisse, 1984; Illazioni su una sciabola,
1984-1986-1992; Danubio, 1986; Stadelmann, 1988; Il Conde, 1993; Le Voci, 1994-
1996; Microcosmi, 1997; Utopia e disincanto, 1999; La mostra, 2001; Essere già stati,
2001; Alla cieca, 2005; L’infinito viaggiare, 2005; Lei dunque capirà, 2006; La storia non
è finita. Etica, politica, laicità, 2006, and Alfabeti, 2008.




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6.- CURATOR


GIORGIO PRESSBURGER (Budapest, 1937)

At the age of 19, Giorgio Pressburger fled to Italy with his brother. He settled in Rome
where he received a grant to study at the National Academy of Dramatic Art,
graduating as a theatre director. He later joined the Experimental Cinema Centre. After
qualifying, the writer Andrea Camilleri introduced him to working on culture
programmes on the radio, marking the start of his lengthy research into sound. At the
Phonology Studio in Milan, he worked with foremost music researchers Bruno
Maderna and Luciano Berio.

He started Biology studies at Rome University. His work for the theatre began in
Naples, Bologna, Rome and Trieste, mainly directing 19th- and 20th-century classics,
and in musical theatre he has contributed to the programmes of leading Italian and
European venues, staging works by contemporary composers such as György Ligeti,
Franco Donatoni and Giacomo Manzoni. His own works of prose theatre have also
been performed.

He works on Italian television (RAI), producing films and versions for television of
works by authors such as Strindberg, Büchner and Pasolini, and has made various
industrial films.

Since 1986, he has written 13 novels and books of short stories, published by Marietti,
Rizzoli, Einaudi and Bompiani. Several of his books have been translated into English.
He has won many of the most coveted literary prizes (Viareggio, Campiello, etc.). His
books have been translated into 15 languages.




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7.- GENERAL INFORMATION


Dates
From 9 March to 17 July 2011

Times
Tuesday to Sunday and public holidays: 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Thursdays: 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Closed on Mondays except public holidays

Please note: on 24, 25 and 26 March, Kosmopolis, and 16, 17, 18 and 19 June, Sónar
and SonarKids. The exhibition forms part of the festival enclosures. On these days, the
opening times and admission fees will be the same as for the festivals.

Guided visits

In Catalan, Sundays at 11.30 a.m., and in Spanish, Saturdays at 11.30 a.m.

From Tuesday to Friday, at 6 p.m., the exhibition is presented in 10 minutes (in Catalan
on Wednesdays and Fridays, and in Spanish on Tuesdays and Thursdays).



Group visits

Please arrange in advance by calling 93 306 41 35 (Tuesday to Friday, from 10 a.m. to 1
p.m.) or by email: SEducatiu@cccb.org.


Admission
Regular: 5 € / Combined entry to two exhibitions: 7 €
Concessions: 3 € for under-25s, senior citizens, large families and group visits, and for
everyone all day Wednesday and on Thursdays from 8 to 10 p.m. / Combined entry for
concessions 5 €
Free admission for under-16s, Friends of the CCCB, senior citizens in possession of a
Targeta Rosa, the unwaged and on Sundays from 3 to 8 p.m.




                  Press Service of the CCCB · Mònica Muñoz / Irene Ruiz
                     93 306 41 23 · www.cccb.org · premsa@cccb.org


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