On the Rain which is meant to be coming down


August, according to imported and adapted traditional knowledge from the other side of the world, it should be raining, the whole month.
You used the centuries old saying of the Marking Days, (i di’ ‘d marca in Piedmonteese) trying export it onto Australian land, southern hemisphere, couldn’t get any further away from the original land/people relationship, yet you’re trailing it.
The saying goes that if you keep record of the last six days of the year and the first six you would get a rough indication of what the weather will be like in the coming 12 months.
In the northern hemisphere the days fall in the winter season, so you decided to export the saying by applying it to the last six days of June and the first six of July.
You recorded the weather and now you have a set of information to assess: June 26 was a drenching day, August 07 should be just that.
July didn’t fall too much out of the mark, it was meant to be raining in the first half, and it did rain sporadically,to be followed by nice weather, and so it did, mostly. But August will have to prove itself.
It may not work at all, and you could blame Global Warming for that, but is more likely is just un-exportable, just not possible to come out with such colonial attitude to assume your imported knowledge has any relationship with the Australian environment whatshowever.
We’ll see.
Other days are important in the Piedmonteese peasant calendar: 26 June, San Vigilio, “Se ‘a piov a San Vigilio ‘a piov quaranta di’ e ‘na smana” ( if it rains at S. Vigilio, it will rain 40 days and a week)
22 July, Santa Maria Maddalena, “a la Madlena a val la pena” (at the Maddalena is good, referring to rain and if rains on that day then rain will be coming down regularly until the harvest of the corn crops, late autumn)
15 August, Assunzione e Beata Vergine Maria, “‘a la Madona ‘a val ‘ncur chicos” (at the Madonna is still good, referring to rain again, and if it rains on the 15th of August it is still good for the crop)
6 September, Santo Umberto, “‘a San bertrume’ ‘a serv mac pi’ a lavete i pe’” ( at s. Umberto is only good to wash your feet, referring to rain again, if it comes on the 6th of September is useless)
2 February, San Biagio, ” se ‘a fioca ‘a san Bias ‘a fioca fin-a a l’uliva” (if it snow on the 2nd of February it will snow untill Easter)
Palm sunday, this year on the 1st of April, “se ‘a piov ‘a le Palme ‘a piov fin-a la fin ‘d Magg” ( if it rains on Palm Sunday it rains ’till the end of May)


Now all of this (and more still to come) relates to a far away land, to a remarkably different environment, and it should be understood that the seasons are opposite to here in Australia, hence your assumption that the Marking Days should be put forward six months, 26 June becomes 26 December, 22 july becomes 22 January and so forth.
We’ll see.

About info

Diego Bonetto is a multimedia artist living and practicing in Sydney, Australia, and is a key member of artists' collectives SquatSpace and the BigFAGPress. -The SquatSpace collective has been producing ground-breaking events and projects since 2000. The group has been curated in a number of shows both in Australia and overseas. The current initiatives, the Redfern-Waterloo Tour of beauty (www.squatspace.com/redfern) tackle issues of social representation and the politics of space generated by gentrification. -The BigFagPress (BFP) is a publishing facility housed in Wooloomooloo, Sydney. The BFP is a salvaged 4-tonnes Off-set proof press. The press allows for the creation of countless artworks by keen printmakers and self-started publishers. www.bigfagpress.org Diego has also been working with WeedyConnection, an environmental art campaign. The project involves an online resource (www.weedyconnection.com), short documentary films, cooking shows, blogs, installations, prints, facebook interventions and various site-specific installations in the form of self-guided tours. WeedyConnection tackle the anthropocentric view of what environment should look like. Based on research and data provided by disciplines as far apart as biology, anthropology, paloenthology, social ecology and ethno botany it formulates ethical questions about cultural representation in times of environmental urgency.
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