12 September 2023
"Natural Reaction" by Marcantonio inaugurated at Fiumicino airport
 "How many times a day do we think that our society is taking an excessively stressful, consumerist and compromising turn? How much of our attitude alters the natural balance of the world around us? And what remains within us of the natural world to which we belong?”. The message conveyed by 'Natural Reaction' by Marcantonio is a powerful message. This contemporary artwork depicts a life-size white rhinoceros, about four metres long, with a fifty-inch screen embedded in the horn. Starting today, passengers have the opportunity to admire it in Boarding Area E of Leonardo da Vinci airport
This new artwork installed at Fiumicino airport leaves no room for interpretation: the white rhinoceros, an endangered animal with only two female specimens still on the planet, sends its last desperate cry and leaves a spark of awareness to passengers departing from Italy's major airport. This message is echoed by Aeroporti di Roma, which with this artwork, together with ACI (Airports Council International) and IATA (International Air Transport Association), joins the fight against the illegal trade in wild animals to promote the protection of biodiversity. According to the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), every year illegal trade in wild animals generates between 7 and 23 billion dollars and thus ranks among the most lucrative illicit commercial activities in the world.

The presentation ceremony this morning at the Leonardo da Vinci airport in Fiumicino was attended by the President of Aeroporti di Roma, Vincenzo Nunziata, the Vice President External Relations & Sustainability, Veronica Pamio; and Simonetta Giordani, Secretary General of Associazione Civita.

“By installing this artwork”, Aeroporti di Roma President Vincenzo Nunziata commented on opening the ceremony, “we confirm our commitment to building the airport of the future, a place where one can find space for in-depth understanding and reflection on important and urgent environmental issues such as the protection of nature and the environment and the fight against climate change, which are issues that Aeroporti di Roma deems crucial. Our intense artistic and cultural programming is therefore part of ADR's sustainability strategy and in recent years it has allowed us to transform Leonardo da Vinci Airport into a unique, increasingly engaging and beauty-oriented place, not only for travellers but also for our community and the local area, thus contributing to the achievement of great goals as attested by the numerous international awards that have brought Fiumicino Airport to the top of European airports in terms of quality of service”.

This morning's event has also been an opportunity to present 'the ADR case' contained in Associazione Civita's Sustainability Report, i.e., the results of the cultural activities carried out in 2022 by Aeroporti di Roma and their economic, social and environmental impacts.
The cultural initiatives promoted by ADR have generated positive effects on income and employment in the territory, through the involvement of about fourteen local suppliers (based in Rome and its province) in the projects analysed. 
The assessment carried out by Civita has also made it possible to estimate the impact on knowledge creation and the number of young people involved in the initiatives. Specifically, families were involved, to foster and spread the habit of participating in cultural initiatives, and thousands of children had the opportunity to take part.

Regarding the contribution of culture in nurturing social cohesion, inclusion and participation, it is estimated that more than 4 million people from all over the world were involved in these projects and enjoyed the works and initiatives undertaken. The participation of women in the projects examined was also high (48%).
“I have imagined a huge white rhinoceros speeding through an office, hurling desks and computers into the air, as an act of rebellion of nature which is awakened and becomes an uncontrollable force reacting to our increasingly crazy and stressful lifestyle. It is a dramatic and at the same time ironic scene, a tragicomic image that invites us to reflect on the way we live. What will the employees of that office do? Will they put everything back in place or will they take the opportunity to change their lives? Will they see the white rhinoceros as a premonitory sign, as an opportunity to be grasped, or as yet another reaction of nature to which we will give no importance? What would we do if it happened to us? The white rhinoceros rebels against our habits, it is the desperate act, the last cry, of an endangered animal. If this vision intrigues us or makes us smile, it is because maybe there is a little rhino inside us that sometimes wants to turn the table upside down and change its life”, Marcantonio, author of Natural Reaction, explained.

Moreover, the initiative is supported by Cultura Italiae, the association whose primary purpose is to disseminate and promote projects, concrete actions and good practices aimed at supporting the world of culture to stimulate, through it, the growth and ethical, social and economic development of individuals and communities as a whole, improving relations between peoples. Cultura Italiae also oversaw the selection of the work for the criteria of sustainability and environmental awareness.