Words and things that light up the stage
Dire Luce (Saying Light) expresses, since its inception, the challenge of assigning words to describe manifestations of lighting; the same suggested definition marks the urgency, and at the same time the stop, in front of the defining of the "things" that concern it. It is a crucial issue that demands a historical and aesthetic approach to the research on and practices of lighting. On the one hand, lighting connotes fluidity and elusiveness, and on the other hand, it connotes materiality; contemporary discussions about the phenomenon of lighting are situated between these two poles: Material and Immaterial, Visible and Invisible, Presence and Absence.
We believe that this fluid ambiguity is reflected in the fluidity of the language used to describe it. But in concrete terms, is it possible to turn this indecisiveness into an object of study by trying to "clarify" the intricacies of the terminology used in the artistic field, with particular attention to the performing arts?
We are convinced that by analyzing, contextualizing and comparing definitions of devices, techniques, and “effects,” of the professionals, and of the design dynamics, it is possible to “illuminate” essential problems regarding the poetics and the artistic and dramaturgical conceptions of lighting, in the fertile dialogue amongst different artistic discourses. The aim of the DIRE LUCE project is therefore a worksite aimed at drawing up a vocabulary of light and its practices in the Performing Arts field. The project practically built a database conceived to host a "lexicon of light" that allows research and comparison of words and expressions linked to this universe.