Monday, April 25, 2016


The Call:

LOUER, C’EST RESTER LIBRE ... according to a text I read at Paris, several years ago, i.e. renting helps you remain free, it does not bind you of anything, it does not compel you to anything, you are not required to do anything, it is the enormous advantage provided by a rented house. Consequently, there are two types of houses (I believe), the houses you prepare to „provide” freedom to other persons (houses you rent) and houses that you prepare for yourself but which do not provide you anymore freedom, instead they give you a point of departure and of arrival. What could you do if many times, freedom may be defined by a total lack of attachment to things, places you pass by, to cities, countries, continents? May a house that you prepare for yourself take away the pleasure of feeling at home anywhere and, at the same time, nowhere? I think it does, the house you choose for yourself, you choose it expressly to keep you in one place and after you chose it, you realize it did not steal any of the illusions of freedom that you had when you did not have anything.

I experienced something similar when I came across the Maramureş region. Maramureş (where I live) is the only European place uncontaminated of all advantages provided by the technology. It is a little paradise you do not want to leave from, the nature makes you be the witness of landscapes that after you see, you realize that you have a poor imagination when it comes to picturing landscapes and nature.

Among all these breathtaking landscapes you can see the houses of Maramureş, wooden houses perfectly fitting the landscape without damaging the nature. It is a sort of “hand art” where the wood of the nature remains wood, but it changes into the thing called house. The old wooden houses of Maramureş have exactly the space you need to live in, nothing made in addition or less, there are no useless objects, each thing being made with a purpose, a meaning. None of these old wooden houses is built to be rented because this would make them loose the purpose why they were erected. I think that one of the purposes they were built is to preserve life and to perpetuate it. It is very difficult to make an accurate description with all meanings and feelings transfused by the houses of Maramureş. I attached to this manifesto several pictures with the old wooden houses of Maramureş. It is said that a picture is worth a thousand words, so, just look at them. Why have I shared with you all these? Because this type of houses are about to disappear, but not tomorrow or next year, but the “progress” will eventually influence this place and it will be fatal for them, if it is not controlled a bit.

I believe this progress should not destroy but preserve and keep them as they are, instituting a tourism program of the ancient places. What do I expect from you? You should create as many MAIL-ARTS, LETTER-POEMS, experimental films dedicated to these exceptional symbols of traditional architecture, while I will organize exhibitions with your works by which I will try to raise public awareness concerning the importance of saving the old houses of Maramureş. If you choose, you may consider these future exhibitions a kind of manifestos for peace and for normality in the world, because your proposals plead for the preservation of almost a world heritage and not for its disappearance. Please, send your works on the well-known address:

PO. BOX 15

For MAIL-ART, use the postcard format, any technique. For LETTER-POEMS, the ideal format is A4, while for the experimental films a 5-minute length should be enough.

All works received from you will be donated at the end 2016 to a museum of contemporary art from this world that will request them and want to have them in their collection, obviously after I will finish organizing the series of exhibitions I planned. All works received will be posted on Send all your works till the end of May 2016, as many as possible, lots of them, all will be exhibited and maybe, next summer, you will come and visit Maramureş in order to witness what I get to see every day, these houses of Maramureş surrounded by their amazing landscapes for which I decided to live here and not in Paris.

Mircea Bochiş

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