This is Prini's best-known standard, executed in 1969, as precious as its immediate interpretation is difficult. The technique is screen printing (serigraphy) on paper. It should be clarified that these are not a graphic works in the usual sense of the term, instead they are works (some in very limited edition, others even unique) in which the artist chooses this unique means to express himself. Perhaps this is the largest standard executed by Prini (he also realised others, entirely different in their conceptual structure, in other words the text). As it is almost impossible to find, this standard is a piece of which I have always been immensely proud. It is still impossible to say how many examples exist: the only example I know is the one belonging to the Goetz Collection in Munich.
The meaning of the work is this: a recorder continuously records its own sound until it wears out, until it exhausts
the possibility of its "use" (in a similar work in progress, a camera was used, also taking photos until it wore out). A
concept underlying the work is that the existence of a standard can only be connected to the use that one makes of it.
Any old standard, without use, would have no reason to exist.
In the exhibition "Fermi in Dogana" held in Strasbourg (1995-96), in which the example from the Goetz Collection was exhibited, this standard had a title, certainly authorised by Prini, which constituted a curious play on words, that exceeded the meaning that I have attempted to give here, on the basis of my own knowledge. It was entitled "L'U.S.A. USA" (The USA uses).
Prini is truly unique: what predominates, in my view, in any of his works, is the unpredictable idea, the originality of the language, thesense of mystery he manages to instil. At times I tell myself that his thought is always directed along unusual, unsteady paths, impassable without a love of "risk", in other words, of the not easy perception on the part of the viewer. Even though, in Prini's universe, action and perception are two key elements of his conceptual approach. But this is not the only contradiction: for example, between the art "object" and its photographic reproduction (rather than the screen printed text/image), Prini prefers the latter, as though suggesting that the object dissolves, while the photograph (or the screen print) maintains the memory. It is for this reason that for many works, also the "historical" ones, it is the photos and the screen-printed texts that remain, and that we collectors seek.
In any case, despite my "fragmentary" perception, his work fascinates me irresistibly, so much so that in the house I have created a space reserved for his works, which I have christened "Arcipelago Prini". I have treated it in the same way that I perceive his work: I have given it the configuration of a puzzle, to which every so often I add a new piece.