Vanitas Vanitatum is a collection of five digital editions by Francesca Fini.
Men cannot see their reflection in running water, but only in stagnant water - Chuang Tzu
In a game of Chinese boxes of senses and signs, in a semantic nightmare, the painter who ideally paints a shipwreck is trapped in a picture that is swallowed up by the waves, in a deep blue illuminated only by the chemical magic of a pack of jellyfish.
Vanitas vanitatum, et omnia vanitas (from Latin: the vanity of vanities, and all is vanity), is a famous biblical passage taken from Ecclesiastes, often cited to affirm the emptiness of earthly concerns and the ephemeral character of the joys and glories achieved in this world.
This concept is the true substance of the so-called memento mori in Art history, where an hourglass glittering in the dark, a wreath of withered flowers, a skull resting on a philosophy book, a flickering candle next to a window, they remind us of the fragility of the human condition.
Starting from this principle, Fini put into practice her technique of fake found-footage, through the processing of impossible moving images, created manipulating materials that belong to pre-cinematographic cultures.
Paintings and portraits of the past come to life, gathered by the creative time machine that collects artefacts and fragments over the centuries, then digitally recomposing them in a contemporary three-dimensional landscape.
The five videos in this collection (three of which are in vertical format) reflect this concept in content but also in their structure: they are perfect, non-linear loops, where it is difficult to establish where is the beginning and where the end.