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Castello Ducale, Trullo Rubina
Ceglie Messapica (BR) Puglia

August 3rd – September 15th 2024

The third edition of NUCRÉ | Rassegna di Arte Contemporanea | Ceglie Messapica is entitled SpartiAcque and will explore the theme of water in relation to the history and territory of the city of Ceglie Messapica. Specifically, the inspirational motif is the ancient well located in the atrium behind the Norman tower, surrounded by Corinthian-style columns and arms' coats of the various feudal families who lived here. In addition to its aesthetic and decorative value, the well is linked to the history and community of Ceglie Messapica. 


Since its birth, Ceglie, and the Salento region as a whole, have faced great problems in water supply. This was based on the collection of rainwater with the help of wells and cisterns. According to popular tradition, however, the well in the Ceglie Castle not only met the needs of the ducal family, but also supplied the entire town with water during drought’s periods. It is a story that puts the accent on sharing and social relations that are very relevant today. Just as it opens a focus on another very urgent issue, the environment. Water, as a common good, is a fundamental element for human life. For a long time, it was thought to be an unlimited resource. Climate change, however, is drastically changing its availability, especially in some areas of the planet. This implies the need for a drastic containment of wastage and an increasingly sustainable management of the water cycle, which also looks at the reuse of rainwater.


The search for new solutions thus passes through the retrieval of ancient knowledge and the understanding of construction practices of the past. The well, as a plastic structure, also becomes an object of formal suggestion. But along with its civil significance, it has had a strong symbolic, in many cases magical, value since antiquity. In addition to collecting water, in some civilisations, the well was the place where purification rites, meetings and marriages were performed. Linked to the cult of chthonic deities, symbolically it also represented the way to connect man to the earth. And it is no coincidence, perhaps, that the denominated Menzana 'Pluvio' (attribute of Jupiter). As we can see, there are many different stimuli that the well of the Ducal Castle of Ceglie can offer, and many stories that it can tell us. In the imagination of the international artists invited, it thus becomes a stimulating and evocative "watershed" between "liquid" reflections, ecological instances, local memories, traditions, present emergencies and critical or poetic projections of the future. Where the "between" coexists alongside the "with": emphasizing, in the play on words of the title, more than the idea of division and opposition that of distribution and sharing contained in the etymon of the word 'partition'.


With its third edition, NUCRÉ establishes the RESIDENZA RUBINA, a programme begun last year with the artist Giulia Parlato. Taking place at Trullo Rubina from the 4th to the 8th of June, artist Giuditta Vendrame will explore underground water systems and the folklore culture associated with them. 

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