CIPHERS, ENCAMPMENTS, PLUGS
Fritz, who studied at the Architectural Institute of Venice a long time ago, asks an excellent question: is it Venice's incapacity (I'd say disinclination?) to be imprinted by the current moment in any [infra]structural way that makes it so open to contemporary art, architecture, film? So that it becomes a better cipher for what's new? Its permeability always defined it, organically, as a place receptive to what was other to itself—at least until it was plugged by industrially oriented infill and by the latest chapter of monumental humanoid folly: concrete floodgates sunken to imprint the mudflats with Berlusconi's name, soon-to-be Atlantis of obsolescence.
Further talk over dinner about ancient Rome as a place characterized architectonically by domestic encampments, and thus the paradox of current xenophobic outrage over encampments of Rom in this place. By Y-talyans, as Emilio Villa would call them.
Also, a friend checks the time via his cellphone and I am seized with the realization that I haven't witnessed this gesture in three whole days outside of America: a gesture normally expressing the tic to eschew live encounter for the digitized feeds of someone/where other.