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ENERGIES for Underground Elements – the 10th “Elementi Sotterranei” Gemona International Street Art Festival unveils its inspiring theme as well as the worldwide guest artists painting live on 2,000 sqm

From 29th May to 7th June 2015, the 10thInternational Street Art Festival will host writers from all over the world to explore “Energies” and express their creativity on 2.000-sqm walls.

This year “Elementi Sotterranei” International Street Art Festival will celebrate its tenth birthday from 29th May to 7th June. Writers from all over the world have been invited to the party and they will redevelop and color Gemona del Friuli, which was devasted by a violent earthquake in 1976 and almost completely rebuilt in concrete.

Thanks to the commitment of “Bravi Ragazzi”, the association for social advancement and cultural promotion which organizes the festival, Gemona has been turned into an open-air museum known worldwide by urban artists. Along the years they have spread the word creating an extensive network which has made 142 artists come together for the 10th edition of the festival, thanks also to the hospitality of Gemona inhabitants who welcome them in their houses.

In the past nine editions of the festival, international artists from Spain, Holland, Germany, Sweden, Brazil, Bulgaria, Great Britain, France, Portugal, Switzerland and Italy, such as Loomit, Belin, Dms, Telmo Miel, Macs, Ecb, Peeta, Erase and many more, including many emerging writers, have come to Gemona for painting on overall 5.000 sqm of graffiti.

In order to celebrate “Elementi Sotterranei 10”, from 29th May to 7th June, 60 writers will work on a surface of 2.000 sqm. The artists will arrive from Italy – Friuli Venezia Giulia in particular – Bulgaria, Spain, Slovenia, Brazil, Belarus, Croatia, Germany, Poland, Holland and Peru. Just to name a few, Corn79 and Vesod from Turin, Yu-Baba from Belarus, Robert Proch and Sepe from Poland, Telmo Miel from Holland and D. Ninja and Deos from Brazil, as well as the Spanish street artist Malakkai, artistic director in the last edition of “Elementi Sotterranei”. For most of them, this will be the first time in Gemona, while some are frequent visitors to the Street Art Festival.

Every year the festival proposes a topical, social or environmental matter, which the artists are called to work on: the 10th edition of “Elementi Sotterranei” is dedicated to “Energies”. Through this common thread, “Bravi Ragazzi” aims at stimulating reflection and encouraging original thinking on how Man uses and transforms all resource – environmental, technological, social – for developing the planet, his own status and interpersonal connections. The goal is to create opportunities for discussing through conferences, workshops and, of course, writing.

“Energies” sums up all the topics explored during the ten years of work, such as Water, Earth, Human Rights, Sustainable Development, Recycling, Generations, Food Sovereignty. The theme is intentionally wide to let the imagination of the artist groups run riot. “Energies” also contains the issue that matters most to “Bravi Ragazzi”, which is to investigate how people connect with landscape and territory in symbiosis with the energies unleashed by the artistic act. They came up with the idea by looking at the impact graffiti have on the cultural and natural environment as well as on territory, and it represents the energy itself that gives the place an identity.

While the professional writers will work on it, the festival will offer various kind of activities to boost critical thinking on the core topic and to engage as many people of all ages as possible. Educational and creative workshops for children, graffiti workshop and mural painting workshops, projections, concerts, meetings and many more cultural events will be promoted in collaboration with local associations.

On 26th April 2015 the audience will get involved in the #DigitalInvasion, a unique chance to admire the art works realized during the ten years of “Elementi Sotterranei”. The preview has been organized by Gemona del Friuli Tourist Office in collaboration with “Bravi Ragazzi” and Gemona del Friuli Municipality. The “Normal Invasion” will start in Piazza Antonio Comelli at 10 am, while at 5 pm you can join the “4Legged Invasion” with your pets and the Dog Walker Club (Asd Lupo Nero – Centro Cinofilo Lupo Nero). The Tourist Office Staff, who will welcome the digital invaders with the graffiti map and the attendance kerchief, asks everybody to invade the town with any kind of digital device to spread online the beauty of its graffiti and the uniqueness of Gemona in hosting this artistic expression.

From 1st May until 3rd May in via Roma, one of the main streets of Gemona, five artists – Bonzai ( London), Soda (London), Boost (Milan), Scarpa and Kerotoo (Gemona del Friuli) – will be the protagonists of “Station”, a live painting preview on the walls of the Station pedestrian tunnel which links the train tracks. Three days to see the artists working on the realization of murals. On 2nd May, the fest of Campagnola in Gemona will offer a full afternoon of creativity workshops and music by Ragazzi del Commissariato and a gig night with Ipercussonici.

“The tenth edition of “Elementi Sotterranei” – the President of Bravi Ragazzi, Francesco Kerotoo Patat, said – is titled ESX and represents a milestone for our association, Gemona del Friuli, the Region of Friuli-Venezia Giulia and the European urban art scene. We decided to celebrate this symbolic moment by inviting sixty artists, including names of the world urban art scene and a group of participants from every edition starting from 2006 to date”. Patat continued: “We will conclude the cycle of redeveloping subways and places where street art and graffiti-writing take up more naturally, with the view of leaving the subways in order to ride the wave of world urban art in the future, promoting the decoration of large façades by contemporary urban artists.

The cultural association “Bravi Ragazzi” is a no-profit organization founded in 2005 and formed by boys and girls from Gemona del Friuli and its surroundings. Its aim is to promote, spread and make people appreciate forms of youth expression, such as urban art, street art and graffiti-writing, which are often confused with vandalism. After the devastating earthquake that almost destroyed the town on 6th May 1976, Gemona was rebuilt mainly in concrete, turning the town outside the city walls grey. “Bravi Ragazzi” works for the urban decoration of the rebuilt part of the town and for the redevelopment of some dilapidated areas. Its most important commitment is the Street Art Festival “Elementi Sotterranei”, which presents discussions on social, environmental and topical issues in order to improve and enhance active citizenship. In addition to this, it aims at promoting cooperation among the artists who take part to the festival in the realization of artworks to get high visual quality results. It also encourages the exchange of different views on techniques and ideas, almost fostering open reflection in front of the wall, which becomes the matrix and the support for cultural gathering.

Next to the festival, “Bravi Ragazzi” carries on various activities and projects throughout the year. They have been collaborating with organizations focused on social issues, such as Amnesty International, Gruppo Specials, Friul Adventures, as well as associations and groups spanning from writing (Macross) to art broadly speaking (Colonos), music (ReddArmy), entertaining environmental and ecology education for children (Kaleidoscienza), also working with youth centers bringing their “belief” and their colors.