In the south of Italy, prayers, rituals, beliefs and superstitions were linked to tradition and folklore and described lived experiences. In Basilicata the rite of fascinazione was widespread whereby an affascinata person felt symptoms of migraine or exhaustion.
The fascinazione took place as a result of involuntary envy towards a person, so the intervention of Maciara (she or he) was used, who through a magical ceremonial removed it.
In an almost crystallized suspended time, preserving cultural identity through a magical act, mixed with imagination, gives life to a series of ceremonial objects designed to perform a miracle to stave off envy.
Affascino is a bronze and borosilicate collection designed to transform everyday objects into a ritual of purification for man and the home.
The collection is composed bay of a charcoal burner, a salt shaker and a magic glass. They are showy objects full of symbols that bring to mind the ancient traditions of the Lucanian people.
Objects that refer to good omen: the rooster which with its song announcing the day and drives away the demons of the night, the bronze bells to be shaken so that their sound will drive away envy refer to the ornaments of religious clothes and in the end an old rooster's spur which in Basilicata was given as an amulet.
The contrast between casted bronze and the delicacy of borosilicate invite the user to use the objects delicately through gestures, a symbol of the slow passage of time. Affascino re-introduces ancient ritual objects and gesture into modern life suggesting a slow approach careful to the needs of the person.
Ph . Alfredo Muscatello (8,9,10)
“Three pieces of burnt charcoal are placed in a glass full of water along with nine pinches of salt. At the end of the rite after having recited the magic formula mixed with holy words, salt water and coal are thrown to free the victim from fascinazione.”