Marinella Senatore’s work is defined by the multidisciplinarity she acquires thanks to the various areas of interest she has studied over time, such as visual arts, music and cinematography. This complex education clearly influences her diverse artistic practice, which includes mediums like video art, photography, performance, installation, sculpture and painting. Using her strong points and starting from her fascination with the concept of participation, the artist develops a form of participatory art that experiments with the creative power of different groups, and builds dialogues between historical or cultural structures to bring about social changes. The basis of her artistic practice is the social connection itself, emphasizing the power of art to facilitate individual emancipation.
Many of Marinella Senatore’s works use phrases or words taken from songs, poems, manifestos or readings – most of them associated with protest movements. These come from the extensive archive she has built up over time with the intention of empowering people and instilling the ability to build better communities in them. Such texts also appear on the works produced for the Chronic Desire exhibition. Forms of protest: Memory and celebration consists of a series of large-scale works, five velvet flags embroidered on both sides hanging vertically or horizontally in the space of the “Corneliu Mikloși” Public Transport Museum. They explore forms of protest from around the world and recover both the traditional craft of sewing and the solemn tradition of the flags raised during parades and sacred processions.
The double-sided embroidered flags are also used by the artist in her participatory projects. To make them, Senatore relies on the collaboration with local artisans who share mottos such as: “We rise by lifting others” (Robert G. Ingersoll), “Dance First, Think Later” (Samuel Beckett), “Be a builder of unguilt”, “Liking yourself”, “Shine”, “Courage” or “Reclaim your right to have a life free of self-doubt”. The phrases, mottos or words that appear on the flags are chosen in such a way that they can be universal(ised), conveying strength and dignity to all people. A visual component is added to the texts. On the works displayed in the “Corneliu Mikloși” Public Transport Museum we see both human figures (most of them borrowed from the artist’s immediate reality) and various symbols. Some of the recurring elements represent light, which fascinates the artist as a most relevant component of our society and the source of all life. Light allows us to see the world around us by distinguishing details, colours or movement. Without light, there would be no art.
On looking at the artist’s works, we realise Senatore is constantly inspired by communities, their actions and creations. Her approach always acknowledges the surrounding context, where artworks become functional structures and create a new ambience through the use of multiple media. This is also the reason why the artist often involves the members of the audience as a way of rethinking the collective action, eventually changing both the traditional role of the artist as the sole creator of the work of art, and that of the audience, which she transforms from a passive into a fully active one.