textile flag, 220 x 120 cm,
Yiling Xiong, Jialin Guo, Martina Scherba, Kaja Jałoza, Darcy Simon
The project is centred on Clara Ghezzi, a residents of the Casa Jannaci which hosts people who struggles with homelessness. She was born in Milan, Italy but spent most of her life in Lima, Peru before misfortune struck and after loosing her job in aircraft company, then her close ones and almost all of her belongings, she came back to her very hometown to seek for help.
The aim of this project is to pay tribute to Clara’s life story and her unique personality that allowed her to get through serious obstacles. Despite a total collapse in her life, she succeeded to move on and start over with help of Casa Jannaci where she also unexpectedly found love.
We decided to tailor a flag that depicts Clara’s identity as a physical testimony to what she accomplished. The symbolism of a flag as an object elevates Clara’s experience to a rank of a universal story of people who overcome personal tragedies. It constitutes and validates an experience of a homeless as equal to grand narratives of success and prosperity.
The flag’s design was inspired by Peruvian Quechua woven fabrics that contain symbols specific to the owners. It is divided in two with waves pattern in the middle, that refers to the fact that she crossed Atlantic Ocean to seek shelter on another continent. Furthermore, there are pictograms placed all over the flag that represent values Clara declares and events from her life.
eye - wisdom, knowledge, farsightedness, alertness
sun/coin - new beginnings, hope/material goods, money
wave - life, change, flexibility, irresistible force
ice cream - playfulness, childhood, happiness
thorns - hardship, suffering, obstacles
hands - friendship, holding on, cheering, empty hands
plane - Clara’s job at the airline, moving flames - passion, power, force, bravery
shoe - womanhood, Italian life, elegance
group exhibition "Da Casa a Casa", Casa Museo Boschi di Stefano / Casa Jannaci, Milan, 24.06-8.07