La Tombe Des Hommes-Scorpiones is an artist’s book by Nicola Pecoraro made in collaboration with Emilio Prini, one of the protagonists of Arte Povera.
35 years lie between them, however, it is not noticeable whilst looking at the book. In 2009 Nicola had a residency in Nice at the museum Villa Arson. One day, in the library, he stumbled into a catalogue of Emilio Prini. The only monographic catalogue ever published since 1967 – the year he took part in the seminal exhibition Arte Povera – IM Spazio. An unacknowledged catalogue by the acknowledged ligurian artist, the richest among the poveristi. The publication documents the only solo show of Prini, hosted by a public institution (Fermi in Dogana, Ancienne Douane, Strasbourg, 1995/96). After photocopying completely, Pecoraro contributed to every page by drawing, adding geometrical patterns, cartoons and scanned personal or found pictures through an associative process. This process has consequently changed the original sequence of the pages to create a new form. A long distance dialogue which developed itself entirely on a iconographical level. The draft has been presented like this to Prini. Through a cut and thrust made of the selection of the images, clippings, adjustments, doubts and second thoughts, the book has undergone at least five drafts to reach this final result. With his proverbially serious and sophisticated, poetical and scientific sense of irony, Emilio decided to define his intervention as an illustrator. Despite the images are many, the cover says “illustration by emilio prini”, the substantive is in the singular as if to consider this multitude as one big image, a singular act. From a monologue the project evolved into a tight conversation. Prini played with his images as if they were words, through an associative process at times immediate and at times more analytical. Nevertheless his motto says “I don’t have programs, I fumble”.
La Tombe Des Hommes-Scorpiones is a book on book, an homage to one of the most enigmatic and influential artists working nowadays, a long distance dialogue between two artists of different generations.