in collaboration with Andrea Calzolari
To suggest a new economic paradigm that leaves room for a human who thinks differently from the homo oeconomicus, two rudimentary Cartesian axes were chosen, one vertical and one horizontal. In the vertical one an iron pyramid-like structure represents the future as we want it, following the model called The Hinterland of Money presented by two sociologists, Maria Mies and Veronika Bennholdt. The earth is the horizontal Cartesian axis, representing the past, human history and our origins. More specifically, it symbolically takes us back to the cult of Mother Earth. The two rudimentary axes trace out the curve of reality as it is perceived, or perceived with difficulty, in the present. To amplify this economic paradigm between imaginary Cartesian axes, a talk by an expert in microfinance was proposed, while I took care of the preparation of the convivium over a hearth in the open air. The wild herbs, cooked and burnt, are a gift through which the cyclical and unconditional abundance of Mother Earth is transmitted. A cyclic quality that is set in opposition to the fear of scarcity that triggers hoarding and selfishness. The drum summons us to gather around a story, the fire continues to cook the food inside the earthenware pot. We need to stoop towards the ground to serve ourselves the food, listening to and interacting with an oral account of a new sustainable economic paradigm. We enter into a dimension of sharing and not maximisation.The Cartesian Axes and the Fire and Uriel Orlow’s The Fairest Heritage on show at Villa Romana, highlight the oppression that is generated when we move away from an economy (oikos nomos) understood as the use of scarce resources to meet collective needs.