LIVEBOAT - Chapter 5 

You poor wretch,
why do you put Earthshaker Poseidon
in such a furious temper, so that he
keeps stirring up all this trouble for you?
No matter what he wants, he won’t drown you.
It seems to me you’ve got a clever mind,
so do just what I say. Take off these clothes,
and jump out of the raft. Drift with the winds.
But paddle with your hands, and try to reach
the land of the Phaeacians, where Fate says
you will find a shelter. Come on, take this veil–
it’s from the gods—and tie it round your chest.
Then there’s no fear you’ll suffer anything
or drown. But when your hand can grab the shore,
then take it off and throw it far from land
into the winedark sea again and turn away.
Homer, The Odyssey, Book Five

LIVEBOAT - Chapter 5 is a project that was conceived in 2014 and has been exhibited on several occasions:

48 Stunden Neukölln Kunst- und Kulturfestival, Berlin, Germany, 2015

Zürcher Theater Spektakel, Zurich, Switzerland, 2023

TodaysArt Festival, Scheveningse Pier, The Hague, The Netherlands, 2015

Am Fluss Festival, Dresden, Germany, 2016

LIVEBOAT - Chapter 5 

LIVEBOAT — Chapter 5 addresses the ongoing refugee tragedy at our borders and offers space for communication and dialogue. After a long odyssey, an oversized lifeboat runs ashore at Tempelhof Airport. Inside the boat, multilingual extracts from Homer’s Odyssey are intertwined into a sound carpet.

"The idea for the 'Liveboat - Chapter Five' project emerged in December 2014 when an alarming number of boats, carrying people fleeing wars and seeking refuge, reached the shores of Lampedusa in Italy or sank shortly before reaching land. The widespread indifference in the face of this tragedy triggered in me a deep need to denounce the events without resorting to pathetic declarations. Thus, I chose to draw inspiration from Book Five of Homer's Odyssey. In the second part of this chapter, Odysseus begins an attempt to go back 'home' on a self-made raft. However, a merciless storm destroys his raft, and he must swim for two nights and days to reach the coast and save his life. This timeless epic illustrates, in its universality, the humanity behind these facts.
During this period, I received an invitation from Martin Steffens, director of the "48 Stunden Neukölln" art and culture festival in Berlin, to present a new work. Situated adjacent to the former Tempelhof airport, the Neukölln district inspired a vision: landing an oversized inflatable boat at the runway's edge, blending Homer's verses with spatial poetry. As part of the composition, Book Five of the Odyssey was simultaneously reproduced in eight different languages within the installation".
Marco Canevacci

Sound design: Marco Barotti
Photos: Arntzen Goetz, Serlenga, Canevacci

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