Children of Unquiet
Film, audio, super 8 film, photographs, board game, drawing
Children of Unquiet is a multipartite project by Mikhail Karikis exploring issues of post-industrialisation, landscape and the next generation. It takes place in the geothermal area of the Devil’s Valley in Tuscany, Italy, which is known for inspiring Dante’s hellish descriptions of L’Inferno, and for being the location where sustainable energy production was invented in the early 1900s and where the first geothermal power plant in the world was built. Until recently, five thousand workers and their families lived there in a group of iconic modernist industrial villages constructed around the power station by the modernist architect Giovanni Michelucci. Following the introduction of automated technologies in the power plant, unemployment in the area increased and prospects for the young became limited resulting in the rapid depopulation or abandonment of entire villages. In developing this project Karikis worked with a group of forty-five children between the ages of 5 and 12 years old, who are from the region. He devised a series of workshops and performances which generated the various parts of this project, including a film featuring a children’s take over of an abandoned worker’s village, a board-game reactivating decision-making processes that have led to the depopulation of the region, and a futurological Super-8 film animating visions of the future of a deserted village from the point of view of children living in the area.
Mikhail Karikis is a London-based artist whose practice emerges from his ongoing exploration of the role of sound and the human voice in creating a sense of collectivity that shapes people’s lives and professional identities, and challenges dominant political and cultural conventions. Karikis’s work has been exhibited worldwide in exhibitions and biennials.