The 16mm film images of "Split Fields" were shot in the villages surrounding the volcano of Vesuvius. They relate living in the danger zone surrounding a dormant volcano to the mafia terror in the region. An existential theme: underneath a continuous yet slumbering threat the inhabitants wait until the bitter end (suddenly) pops up. The film loop, curling its way through the space and in between the three projectors, mixes in documentary with fictional images. We get to see, for instance, the abandoned villa of a murdered mafia leader, people shopping in a supermarket at the bottom of the volcano, or a man who - unambiguously symbolic - makes his cat walk along the edges of a stairwell. Even though the population seems to have forgotten all about the ever-present danger of the Vesuvius, images of fireproof hides in the woods suggest that everybody is well-prepared. The constant threat Split Fields' is aiming for is continued in the growling soundtrack: digital heavily edited field recordings from the volcanic area by Jan St. Werner.
 
Split Fields, 2003


Image 1: Film still © Rosa Barba 
Image 2: Installation view at Argos Brussels, 2004 © Rosa Barba