Canto di strada is the catalogue of the joint exhibition Canto di strada (Street Song) by Hamish Fulton and Michael Höpfner held at the MAN Museum in Nuoro (6 January–5 April 2015). The publication consists of two cloth-bound books in a cardboard slipcase, dedicated to each of the artists. The books contain photos, wall drawings, installation views and the original essays The Song Line (The plain truth) by Lorenzo Giusti, The Value of Experience by Muriel Enjalran and Off the Beaten Track by Heike Eipelduer.
Hamish Fulton (London, 1946) is one of the most representative figures of English art in recent decades. Along with Richard Long he is considered to be the founding father of an international movement of “walking artists,” a movement in which Michael Höpfner (Krems, 1972) is also a significant member. The exhibition at the Nuoro MAN placed the two artists’ work side by side identifying a common ground for comparison in a 14-day walking journey through the Supramonte and Gennargentu mountains. The artists undertook separate journeys, experiencing a total immersion in the harsh environment without even meeting each other. Their respective approaches have been documented in two separate booklets, edited and designed by NERO.
Fulton has synthesized his path in texts, photographic prints and drawings made during his two week journey. Fulton’s art is a kind of geographic poetry, with phrases and signs that, like maps, recall places, heights, toponyms and the miles he has covered, capturing the essential elements of his journey. The experience of walking is the work of art, while the texts and photos are simply means to convey it. Höpfner, on the other hand, has produced a series of photographic negatives, organised in sequences of four groups that correspond to different moments in his walk, together with a series notes from his journey superimposed on photographs.
The works in the exhibition constitute a sort of reflection on art through an analysis of the relationship between experience and narration. For both artists, the object is a residual part of the experience – the real work – and is for the public.