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CASCINA MACONDO’S CULTURAL POLICIES
reading, writing, orthoepic accentuation, haiku poetics,
raku ceramics, dance, theatre, integration, contamination,
handicap, dowelled didactics, wabi-sabi, utopia


Cascina Macondo organizes many events directed to the achievement
of the objectives listed in this Cultural Project



one hundred years of solitude


Cascina Macondo is Anna and Pietro’s home. In some premises it hosts the cultural association “Cascina Macondo”, set up in 1993 by a group of artists proposing musical performances, readings, poetry in the streets. But our history, our passion for reading-aloud, writing, philosophy, ceramics dates back to many years before, to the seventies, to the university period, when in a small furnished room in Turin, Via Madama Cristina n. 25, we printed with a cyclostyle the monthly poetry and literature magazine “LA TENDA”. As year passed by Cascina Macondo specialized in the art of teaching and training. Working with teen students, we often discover we already worked with them when they attended nursery school or primary school. Our peculiar experience is exactly transversal didactics. With many experimented and experimental projects, with read-aloud, creative writing, clay manipulation, Haiku poetics, dance, theatre, music, the good cultural contaminations, experimentation, research, we want to stimulate contacts, thought, creativity, personal growth, communication, comparison, the ferment of ideas, the awareness of commonplaces.
Children, teens, men, women, disabled, elderly people, strangers, in a climate of simplicity meet at Cascina Macondo and work. We act in all the national territory. Since 2003 also internationally, with Haicom (Haiku International Community Cascina Macondo), with Rakuhaiku Ceramics, with African Expression Dance. Thank you to Gabriel Garcia Marquez: he gave to mankind One hundred years of solitude, whose village “Macondo” we inspired to, when we gave the name to our Cascina (farmstead).


1)    reading aloud – discovering expressive and communicative potentials of voice, we comes to a major awareness of our “inner physicalness”. Voice is seen as a “creature” that can be lovingly educated. To transform into a sound and a voice the magic sign of writing. To discover the value of difference, to learn to love it. To give others our winning voice. To promote the practice of creative reading aloud in every social and cultural ambit, as an instrument of learning, culture, socialization. To stimulate the pleasure of meeting and listening, discovering again the beauty of an ancient collective ritual. link


2)    writing – practicing creative writing it is possible to understand the best qualities of a writer: “being able to see” and “being able to hear”, without prejudice, being permeated by reality and by the world. To stimulate intellectual curiosity, knowledge, self-discipline, to observe the details, essentiality, containment, awareness, simplicity. To stimulate the interest for what others write and so to enter into relation and to accept comparison. To diffuse the practice of writing following Natalie Goldberg words: “may writing teach us to live, and may living teach us to write.” link


3)   linear orthoepic accentuation - through the Editorial Series managed by Cascina Macondo on behalf of Edizioni Angolo Manzoni, to diffuse editorial products with linear orthoepic accentuation, promoting the birth of a new professional figure in the editorial world. Orthoepic writing realizes a kind of “solidarity pact” with children’s world, remembering us every moment that that world, of which every adult is responsible, lives and grows up at our side in a parallel way. To render a service to our Italian language, wishing it to become the common heritage of a wider and more aware community. Precision can help us to acquire better and in a deeper way the language we speak.
Click here:  http://www.youtube.com/user/haiku575/videos
(you will hear a voice pronouncing the open and closed sounds of the vowels “e” and “o” of the Italian language. Listen to them a couple of times carefully, and you will learn at once)
Click here: (to know more on linear orthoepic accentuation)



4)     haiku poetics – to measure ourselves with Haiku means to observe the world with careful eyes. It forces us to get free from overtones, from useless and superfluous words. It pushes us to “look” and, above all, to “catch” the essence of something we see, the substance of an experience, the core of an emotion. It is a poetry of simplicity, containment, deep concentration, essentiality, beauty. A great school of life and reflection. To diffuse the practice of Haiku Poetry in Italy and abroad, believing that Haiku composition is an extraordinary instrument of education to listening, able to activate also processes of collaboration and solidarity. link


5)    HAICOM (Haiku International Community Cascina Macondo) – international community linked by the common interest in Haiku poetics with all its implications of poetic and philosophic practice. It is a close net of contacts, with the aim to pass over the differences, the dissimilarities, the origins, to come to sharing, solidarity, cultural exchange, cultural contamination, in a wabi-sabi spirit. The instruments to realize this community are the International Haiku Contest in Italian, organized every year, the participation to international conventions organized by other Haijin communities, the study, the updating, the research of formal aspects of haiku poetics, public readings, the organization of meetings and conventions, the diffusion of haiku in schools, the courses for teachers and many other initiatives. link


6)     poetry – to make other people know other kinds of poetic compositions: the MISURALE, remembering us how people are, after all, distant and separated entities, the FUCI, a collection of Haiku in a sequence (collective poetry), the CORBELLO, the TAWANI, the ORTOHAIKU, the HAIKU TOMBOLATO, the HAIKU ANAREPLICO, the GIANUHAIKU, the POESIA NOMOGNOMICA, and other kinds explored by Cascina Macondo to stimulate and create
poetic sensitiveness, thought, humanism. link


7)     rakuhaiku and ceramics – we have been experimenting Raku ceramics in Cascina Macondo’s workshops for fifteen years. Three Rakuhaiku bowls, fired the day of the prize-giving, are the prizes for the first three winners of the International Haiku Contest in Italian, organized by Cascina Macondo every year. Rakuhaiku is a Cascina Macondo’s typical handmade object; it is the result of an experimentation strictly linked with Haiku poetics. It is a bowl, a panel, a handmade object. A Haiku, interpreted with the art of Raku ceramics, sets up a very particular kind of Haiga (coupling of a haiku with an image). The image coupled with the Haiku is the tridimensional image of the handmade object itself, with its shapes, its spots of colour, its craquelé effects, its enamels, its ritual. In the production of Rakuhaiku bowls are involved the aesthetic rules of Haiku poetry (simplicity, essentiality,..) , the aesthetic rules of Raku ceramics (uniqueness, essentiality, handmade object,..) and the aesthetic rules of wabi-sabi. The artist hand-manufacturer is in ideal and deep contact with the Haijin to transform the Haiku he/she produced in a little artistic object of great value, unique and unrepeatable. It is a passage: the haiku is reinterpreted, revisited, transformed by the ceramist’s freedom, vision, sensitiveness, in shape, colour, object. link


8)     dance, theatre, tanomi – the gesture and parts of a gesture put into a sequence in the “Dancing Body” become links of a chain that transforms in artistic language. “Tanòmi” is a Sanskrit word meaning “dance” “to arrange in a chain”. The seminars periodically organized by Cascina Macondo, conducted by highly qualified teachers, tackle, investigate, explore, experiment the universe of elements connected with Dance: plasticity, essentiality, detail, precision, rhythm, music, space, synchrony, sequence, direction, organization, silence, voice, breath, posture , proxemics, sensuality, maieutics, art of dancing, sensitiveness, mental attitude, setting, symbolism, didactics, awareness, creativity, fantasy, style, contaminations, to pursue a deep awareness of the Dancing and Performing Body.


The smell and the colour of wisteria
seem
far from the moon


(Yosa Buson)



9)   handicap – the thread recovered - Cascina Macondo completed twenty years of experience in consultations and multimatters laboratories to manipulate clay, creative writing, synesthetic aloud-reading, diction, dance and percussions, poetry, voice, listening, for handicapped and slightly disabled people, children, teens, adults, families. Courses that are realized and conducted with great passion, creative didactics, great love for the resources and the expressive possibilities that handicap and disability possess of their own. Many initiatives are explicitly scheduled to allow the so-called “normal” people to integrate with handicap, making them discover the beauty that the “differently able” produce with their verbal language nearly oneiric, their spontaneity, the extraordinary freshness of their words arranged in a row like pearls, moving and capturing, naturally unwinding poetry. The poetry and the highly imaginative world expressed by handicap are a treasure and a richness so nice and important that normality really deprives itself of great emotions not discovering, knowing and mixing with it. link


10)   dowelled didactics –today teaching still means the most of times to rob students of the joy to discover the world by themselves” (Pietro Tartamella). To diffuse the DOWELLED DIDACTICS, a Cascina Macondo’s model of education and teaching, whose fundamental principles discover again the ancient concept of “education” (ex-dùcere, to lead outside) in which the teacher has the role of EDUCATOR, of a person helping students to discover their talents and to display them. To diffuse the concept that TEACHING  is a complex and important ART. Some principles of Cascina Macondo’s dowelled didactics are: the equation “lesson=well being”, multisensory, experimentation, analysis, hypothesis, verification, intuition, deduction, logic, stimulating analytical line of reasoning (backwards) and concise reasoning (projected ahead), the didactic rhythm, the sense of group and collectivity, communication, self-esteem, precision, curiosity, interest, passion, creativity,.. (Courses in schools, training for teachers) link


11)    integration, interculturality, contamination - starting from the observation that the “cultural identity” is not fixed and stationary, but rather a “process in becoming”, feeding itself with contributions and contaminations and evolving, modifying and reshaping itself continuously, Cascina Macondo intends to favour and organize training and creativity courses where all the cultures meet with equal dignity. To diffuse the concepts of CULTURAL CONTAMINATION and CULTURAL IDENTITY that, reciprocally permeating each other and “acting one another” always produce a “new state” (transitory) in habits, ideas, thoughts, actions. link


12)    wabi-sabi – to diffuse WABI-SABI aesthetics, as Leonard Koren shows. Wabi-Sabi is the beauty of imperfect, temporary, unfinished things. It is the beauty of humble and modest things. It is the beauty of unusual things. Mud, paper, bamboo are wabi-sabi and their intrinsic qualities are superior to gold, silver, diamonds. In wabi-sabi there is no concept of “precious”. An object is wabi-sabi only when it is appreciated for what it is, discovering its “intimacy”. Wabi-sabi things are small and dense, sober and cosy, as if they were making a sign to us to come closer, to touch them. They make us become aware of a reduced psychological distance between us and the things. Wabi-sabi places are small, secluded, intimate, they make reflection easier. Cascina Macondo aims at wrapping every initiative, from didactics to haiku contest, from ceramics to aloud-reading, from dance to theatre, in a wabi-sabi atmosphere. link



UTOPIA

A serious project of cultural policies contemplates, among its objectives, also a utopia. The function of utopia is to create a status of “tension” towards an ideal place and time, in the future, far; it keeps the dream alive, helps not to feel empty, as normally happens, when the targets, little by little, are reached. It makes us feel forerunners, to give a sense to our actions, to keep energy and hope alive. Cascina Macondo’s cultural project contemplates four utopias. We are aware that they are utopias.


13)    utopia n° 1 – in politics the use of unanimous voting
To diffuse in everyday life the practice of “alternating couples” voting and, in the future, to diffuse in politics the system of “unanimous” voting used by American Natives. But, thinking well about it, the idea of a “unanimous voting” is a utopia just like the concept of “democracy” is a utopia in our western world. To be ruled by majority (the half + 1 of the voters) seems always right and democratic to us all. The contradiction is that we are confronted with a “dictatorship of the majority” and we do not perceive it, either. The word “democracy”, so often used, makes us believe that it real. Because everybody uses it, it seems that it really exists. The concept of “unanimous voting” is never used in everyday speeches, on TV, by politicians; the perception of its utopia seems a greater utopia. But the “unanimous voting” is a utopia just like the concept of democracy is a utopia. link


14)    utopia n° 2 – interstitial philosophy
To give body to Epicure’s thought: “Don’t philosophize for fun, but seriously, because we do not need to seem sane, but rather to be really sane.” The traditional icon of a philosopher is the one of a man walking along the boulevards, or with a bookcase at his back, sometimes with a pipe. Maybe it’s true for the professional philosopher. But common people philosophize in many other ways: when they are on the toilet bowl, when they take children to school, when they drive the car to go to work, or when they throw lime on the wall with a trowel; only sometimes when they walk along a boulevard or on a deserted beach. Our utopia is to imagine that the pure philosophic speculation can be an everyday practice and a real pleasure also for common people. Not to start from pre-established ideas, not to invent rules and principles and then to pack into the world. But to discover rules and principles coming from the reality of the world. To set at zero ideas and concepts accumulated during our lifetime. To start again. To doubt of everything.
Don’t take anything for granted. To find out prejudice. To drag commonplace out. To go back, if possible, to mechanisms that generated them and made them penetrate us so deeply that we are not able to recognize them anymore. Aware of the error that surrounds us and wrap us up as the air we breath, to recognize sincerely how every point of view is important and useful not to be deceived by error and by our very words. link


15)    utopia n. 3 - the “dellevatore” (the remover)
Jan Skàcel used to say: “Poets do not invent poems, poetry is somewhere back there, it is there since a very long time. The poet only discovers it”.
Michelangelo used to say: “A sculptor only has to remove what is superfluous from a block of marble. His wonderful statue is there already, hidden in the block of shapeless marble. The sculptor only has to discover it, to remove the superfluous marble. Sculpture is the art of removing.”
Experimentation can open new paths, can make us understand other aspects of “communication”, of “reality”, of “poetry”. Experimentation shows us the possibility to abandon the great chimera to be the centre of universe. It pushes us to “observe” the world, to “see” it in its essence, to make up with it. It is thanks to the considerations of some authors, the study in depth and understanding of their considerations, the way of thinking of American Natives and of many other “primitive” cultures, our practice of poetry, of writing, of creativity, our experience, that we discovered the poetry and beauty of handicap. Poetry already exists! Supporting this consideration, we look for “places” (real or mental) in which poetry hides. Poet has the task to find it and bring it to light. A new universe of “ways” to discover “poetry” opens. The “poet” is a “dellevatore” (remover), showing us things that were hidden, veiled. link


16)    utopìa n. 4 – the “recublenza” (art of recovery)
The “Recublènza” is the art of recovery. It investigates on things sank into oblivion that, after analysis demonstrating their usefulness for man’s growth, are brought back to light and practice again. Its reason for existence comes from the observation that historically, and even more in our times, the “progress” goes on and establishes above all with economic boosts. The haste ruling progress prevents us from “seeing” all the mechanisms acting in this process. The Recublenza is interested in this changes, trying, with its in-depth analysis, to understand what is “earned” and what is “lost” with the arrival of new products and habits having an impact on life.
The diachronic recublenza investigates on past things fell into disuse. Temporal line.
The synchronic recublenza investigates on contemporary things. Geographic line.
The ponderal recublenza investigates on new things, trying to find a balance with old things. Decision line or Choice line.
Cascina Macondo, where the Recublènza was born, works at present to recover practices like orthoepic writing in books and magazines – the vision, from the children, of movies beginning from  the second part – the playing down of reading comics starting from the end from the children - the use in politics of the concept of unanimity of American Natives. link



CASCINA MACONDO – ASSOCIAZIONE DI PROMOZIONE SOCIALE
MusicartheatreAssociatedCultures
National Centre to Promote Creative Reading Aloud and Haiku Poetics
Borgata Madonna della Rovere, 4 - 10020 Riva Presso Chieri (TO) – Italia
tel/fax    +39 (0)11.94 68 397 – mobile +39 328 4262 517
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