In 1172 the third column of Venice arrived in San Marco Square from the East. The column is thought to be 16 meters in height and 70 tones in weight. During its passage to the present day, the column was inexplicably misplaced; drowned within the depths of the Adriatic Sea, the monument’s factuality has been drifting from accurate history since.
Initially following the school of archaeologists and researchers, whose aims are to localise this sunken Byzantine artefact, Nicola Baratto (b.1989) and Yiannis Mouravas (b.1986) continued this research on a residency they undertook at Istituto Ellenico di Studi Bizantini e Post-Bizantini di Venezia, and then eventually arriving in Athens through a pilgrimage from the Oracle of Delphi. By wandering, digging and recollecting memories they have developed the practice of archaeodreaming.
Sometimes Archaeology Dreams of Itself employs archaeodreaming to discuss the legend of the third lost column of San Marco and its fellow monuments of Mediterranean antiquity. It also proposes experiential strategies to face the time we live in: as an agency to disentangle from immaterial capitalism and imposing national narratives. This aims to create a metaphysical space to spark collective imagination. When archaeology is a manifestation of ‘complex time’- it is as much about the present as it is about the past and future, it observes the residual marks left behind by forgotten histories, and it allows us to understand our anthropological behaviour in accordance with its topography.
Delving into the depths of history, an archaeological constellation of memories is unearthed, a platform for dreaming is ignited, and a stage for imagination through sleep is framed. These fragmented fantasies are used to fuel and imagine future relics and foster myth making.
‘Father, Son, Holy Ghost! Three voices elevated to one in the sense of the Byzantine Symbol of the sun, the moon and the hand, and suspended infinetely upon a Byzantine Rose.’