Standa action
project by Fratelli Fortuna
(Beatrice Catanzaro, Matteo Ferrario, Margarita Vazquez Ponte)

Standa is an Italian chain store, which reached the peak of its success during the retail boom of the 1980´s.The Standa property which lies in Biella’s busy center has been completely empty since October 2003. It occupies 2 floors of prime real estate, and yet will remain empty until 2009, as it is cheaper for the current owners to leave it in its current state than to pay the fines incurred by opting out of their contract. This state of abandonment is leading to structural damage of the building.
F.lli Fortuna decided to reactivate focus on this empty building by working on its façade. Posing as a cleaning company we cleared the frontage of graffiti and posters as if in preparation for a forthcoming event. The act itself and our fake identity proved to be both visible and invisible. The cleaning provoked many reactions and responses from the public, and yet at the same time blended into the background and was ignored by any passing members of the local authorities. The creative strategy being an attempt to gain information by monitoring the collective memories of the general public, whose curiosity was awakened by this action, thus creating questions rather than making statements.
Our intervention tried to work in the gap between a justifiable financial decision and is side effects on the reality of social daily existence.


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