Archivio Series - Small books designed and packaged by the Archivio Vincenzo Agnetti with the aim of documenting the artist's work, highlighting the most visionary and contemporary aspects of his artistic research. Agnetti worked by crossing different disciplines: painting, sculpture, criticism, epistemology, technology, literature with a political and poetic sensitivity that has shaped his path. The relationship between work and research was crucial for the artist who combined critical and theoretical aspects with the poetry of his paintings. Therefore each volume starts off from the works exhibited in the preparations made in the “Machiavelli 30” Archive.
Archivio 06 is the accompanying book to the exhibition organised by the Archivio Vincenzo Agnetti dedicated to one of Vincenzo Agnetti's most interesting works, La Macchina drogata. Developed in 1967 as a static theatre, La Macchina drogata is an Olivetti Divisumma 14 calculator modified by the artist: by typing in normal mathematical operations, instead of numerical results it produces words that, although meaningless, serve as support for intonation. The machine, which has an intrinsic polysemic value, triggers a process, a precursor of artificial intelligence, that transforms it into the artist-author of everything it produces, with unexpected and ever-changing results. The drug referred to in the title is language in its basic formulation, the letters of the alphabet: a sort of psychedelia of paradoxical programming is achieved.
This sixth volume has the ambition of providing a glimpse of the whole operation, although it could not be comprehensive for many reasons, including the difficulty of rendering the staging of the static theatre in the archives. There are critical points here relating to the various meanings that La Macchina drogata entails, both of the critique of language, of political criticism, and of the problems related to randomness and the relationship with technology.
The volume is accompanied by images from the period, photographs of the installation and of the works currently on display.