AFTER Pokémon (15 years later)
fifteen years earlier
“When in 2000, Gallery Analix (Geneva) asked me to do a new show with them, "Pokémon Stadium" had just launched for Nintendo 64. Pokémon's presence was for me some short of Manifesto and so I decide to make a Pokémon exhibition. I re-drawn and printed a number of Pokémon and then enlarged them using my Vibracolour on Super-glossy paper technique. In Geneva, Pokémon were met by the art world with total indifference, even embarrassment.
Who or better "what" was writing that "Manifesto" and what was stated on it wasn't completely clear back then. To me, it seamed written directly from "the computer world" and as with a few other "special" videogames like "Doom" & "SuperMario", its message was somehow existential. Now, 16 years later, in a world where our computer is no more kept "by the hand" -as with a Playstation controller- neither it seats on our lap as with a laptop, now that its glued on our palm (a tablet) and has become a third-palm for us (instead of a third-eye), it all makes sense.. Pokémon and certain other videogame creatures were indeed a manifesto but it wasn't the generic "Computer World" promoting it, it was put forward instead by one of its more mysterious creations that was just coming of age: "Pokémon" was the Manifesto of the Animated Cartoon
and in Milan
In 2001 I tempted showing Pokémon again, this time at Antonio Colombo Gallery in Milan. Again, nobody seamed to care. "I'll send my son to see this show"-an big Italian collector said-"maybe he'll find something he likes in it. He is 4 years old"
Need to Catch them all
Laura Cherubini: “ "In this universe in evolution composed of transformations and metamorphoses everything can change into something else, including the most authoritative of the characters. Jesus is another recurring figure in the writings of Manetas: in a text entitled "Save As…" he speaks of the resurrected Christ according to the evangelist Mark, “under another form”, and Caravaggio, in fact, in the Cena in Emmaus, paints Jesus without a beard. “Jesus returns in a new format”, Manetas comments, “a version probably lighter and easier for people to copy. He probably lost some pixels during the compression but that was necessary”. Save the Saviour. In another text, Choose Expand, the artists notes that were Jesus to want to return today he wouldn’t settle for a shaven face – he’d rather appear as a giant Pokémon. And if he wants to try walking on water, he should come equipped with a joystick." read.
»were Jesus to want to return today«
»he wouldn’t settle for a shaven face«
»he’d rather appear as a giant Pokémon«
After Milan, the World started forgetting Pokémon and videogames altogether. The same happened a few years later to Second Life and Internet Worlds. There was a resistance-from the side of us humans- to face reality and evolution. "If we'll ignore it, it will probably go away" people seamed thinking, "after all, we are the most intelligent life-form on this planet, aren't we?"