10 000 red roses were thrown from the balcony at the square in front of the Villa Medici in Rome, on the 21st June 2000, during the exhibition La ville / le jardin / la mémoire, curators : Laurence Bossé, Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev, Hans Ulrich Obrist.
Produced with the support of the Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations.
The two most beautiful commentaries by participants, both antagonistic and, paradoxically, complementary, were :
"So much love !" and "What a waste !"
Initially this performance was to have taken place on the large flight of steps of the Trinita dei Monti.
Photos / camera : Edouard Boyer, Jakob Gautel, Jason Karaïndros, Eriko Momotani, Frédéric Mouly and Anne Piéjus
Warmest thanks to Sara Stabile
The video Rosa was part of the play MEETING, The Argo Theatre Company, director Eleonora Rossi, after texts by Rosa Luxemburg, in collaboration with the playwright David Lescot and the artists Edouard Boyer, Antonio Gallego, Jason Karaïndros, Roberto Martinez and Brigitte Zieger, 2000 - 2002.
Last photos : Projection of the performance video Rosa, at the villa Medici in Rome, on the opening night of the exhibition 350 Years of Creativity. The Artists of the French Academy in Rome from Louis XIV to the Present, curator Jérôme Delaplanche, on October 13, 2016. At the very same place where the performance took place, in front of the door leading to the balcony from which the 10 000 red roses had been thrown on that memorable June 21, 2000.
I threw the roses, Oh my love, to tell you how much I love you.
Red passion emblems.
I offer you the perfume memory code, Oh my soul brother, for you to breathe. My miserable flower mysterious flower, yearn flower my yearning suitor. I threw roses this morning, as in olden days men threw carnations. I flung them - with a movement of my arm, grace, revolt - in the face of the enemy I flung them, spitting my red blood roses. Still shaking with my anger. Imperiously I fling them at you, in the face, claws of scathing thorns. They claw and condemn you. Ribboned with roses, a crown of thorns everyone watching you.
I flung the roses. Homage to the disillusioned ones red revolt. To slavs with bombarding eyes. Spray of mourning roses, and of miracle roses, the prettiest flowers grow on mass graves. Fragrant love, sacrilege, and how happy I was.
I flung the roses, with all my strength like at war, with conviction!
You came to pick them up, on the ground like a message in a bottle at sea an energy a declaration. Stretching out my arms so that they go far far I felt myself living, flying in your arms and flying and smiling.
Claire Legendre, 21st of August, 2000
Translation Carmela Uranga