Video: Dario Cecchini at MAD3

We’re entering one of the most exciting times of the year here, when planning for the next MAD is in full swing and footage from the last symposium starts to trickle in. Today, we have one of the highlights of MAD3 to share with all of you: Tuscan butcher Dario Cecchini’s “Carne e Spirito.” 

There’s already been a recap of Cecchini’s presentation on this site, but here’s some more background: 

On day one of the symposium, attendees walked into the big top to find a dead pig hanging from the ceiling. No explanation was given for this unexpected set piece. Co-curator David Chang said a few words to welcome guests. As he walked off stage, the lights dimmed and AC/DC’s “Hell’s Bells” started blaring from the PA. Then appeared Cecchini, in bright red pants, hair slicked back, sharpening his knives like a showman who knows the drill. He cut straight down the belly of the pig, letting all of its guts fall from the cavity he had just created. 

When the AC/DC faded, what followed was not a show, but rather an impassioned, often tender case for the importance of craftsmanship and tradition. Cecchini argued that his work could amount to poetry, a combination of knowledge (understanding that you can use every part of the animal) and consciousness (respect for the animal) that can bring people back to the “original customs of the tribe,” in a world where everything seems to be getting more and more commodified, processed and impersonal. 

As if the 20 minutes Cecchini spent describing his life’s work and his love for his wife weren’t poetic enough, he closed by reciting a lengthy passage from Dante, by heart. 

You can now enjoy his entire presentation by clicking on the clip above. Stay tuned for a new video from MAD3 to post here every Monday.