Last week marked the opening of the second part of CONNEXXION, the Widespread Festival of Contemporary Art curated by Livia Savorelli and promoted by Associazione Culturale Arteam with the patronage of the Municipality of Savona, a candidate city for Italian Capital of Culture 2027. In this phase, twelve artists created site-specific installations or performances in symbolic places throughout the city.

The first location was the Monument to the Resistance, a significant site inaugurated by Sandro Pertini in 1974. Situated in an area where streets are named after the men and women of the Savonese Resistance, the festival began here on April 20th with the performance "Bandite" by Silvia Margaria. This performance, created in collaboration with ANPI and the "A Campanassa" Association, and involving the participation of the flag-wavers of the Palio Castell'Alfero Committee, was inspired by the commemoration rites of the fallen of the Resistance.

The second location was the former Carcere Sant’Agostino, a space that has been repurposed through urban regeneration efforts and was chosen by Savorelli for its significance in reflecting on the concepts of freedom, memory, and identity. Here, a group of artists including Alessio Barchitta, Rocco Dubbini, Armida Gandini, Federica Gonnelli, Lorenzo Gnata, Monica Gorini, Carla Iacono, Gianni Moretti, Giulia Nelli, and Filippo Riniolo, each selected a cell to explore their reflections on these themes.

The prison cell played by Armida Gandini is titled The number 34 and the number 27. In an environment where the color red prevails, red as the color of the Resistance but also of urgency, the inspiration is given by literature. The installation, in fact, includes a sound where a voice tells a story made up of many stories using quotes taken from various books, thus comparing interpretations and experiences coming from different contexts to arrive at a more complex perception of reality than just the plurality of feelings can give back. The starting book is The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumàs and the names of Edmond Dantès and Abbot Faria are replaced by two numbers, 34 and 27, as happens to prisoners who are deprived of their name and identified with a number. From the cell a red rope comes out, invading the corridor as an attempt to get out and create a connection with the outside.

The cell played by Monica Gorini is a lush garden that, in some way wants to recall the imagination of the prisoners who imagine new scenarios of freedom. “The installation welcomes, envelops, transforms through the engagement of the senses, stimulated in a perceptive interconnection which at times presents a synesthetic aspect. Sensory interconnections end up becoming mental and emotional interconnections in a reversal of the premises: darkness: guiding light, overwhelm - strength of ideas, general instability - conscious balance". The installation, created using eco-sustainable materials, was made possible thanks to the collaboration of two important technical partners: the Dino Zoli Textile company from Forlì supplied the fabrics with which the tactile elements were created, while the olfactory dimension was curated by Christopher Dicas Haute Parfumerie. The latter has created five ad hoc formulations: Secret Garden Symphony (based on 69 Le Parfum with other notes): an harmonious blend of grapefruit and lavender, enriched with notes of cardamom, pink and basil, blends with cedarwood, vanilla and oak moss to create a sense of mystery and poetry; Deep Forest Elixir (based on Christopher DiCas Le Parfum): with notes of bergamot and cedar blended with jasmine, geranium bourbon, and peppermint, this fragrance captures the depth and magic of a hidden forest, complemented by petrol, vanilla, and oak moss; Whispering Woods Elixir: the refreshing aroma of bergamot and peppermint intertwines with night flower, jasmine, and bourbon geranium, while cedar, benzoin, and vanilla add a touch of warmth and mystery; Herbal Harmony Symphony: a symphony of lemon, petitgrain and lavender blends with rosemary, geranium bourbon and elemi, creating a herbal harmony enriched with cedar, benzoin and vanilla; Enchanted Forest Sonata: an enveloping composition of bergamot, mandarin, and basil blends with night flower, jasmine, and cardamom, while tobacco, leather, and oak moss add depth and charm to this enchanted forest. creating olfactory suggestions typical of a fresh floral field and lushness that relaxes the senses and invites positive thoughts.

Filippo Riniolo presents, in the chapel of the former prison, the performance Selezioni, which draws inspiration from the terrible episode of the selection in Auschwitz, narrated by Primo Levi in ​​If This Is a Man: Faced with a Nazi officer, the prisoners ran while he lastly, in a few moments, decided their fate by simply moving the card given to him to the right or left. It was a banal act of bureaucracy that drew the line between life and death to balance the inhumane accounts of the camp.

Last space, the Priamàr Fortress, where the monumental work by Davide Dormino entitled Semi was set up, a quote from the Greek poet Dinos Christianopoulos who passed away in 2020: «They tried to bury us; they didn't know that we were seeds»—will take shape through 49 letters approximately 80 cm high and will occupy a space of 7 x 7 metres. The work that gives shape to a very powerful and always current statement, linked to resistance in a universal sense.