A Privileged Source of Information


Laura Di Gregorio


Transparency is an inspiring concept. It leads to abstraction, stimulates sublime feelings and ideals. It could be viewed as a leading parameter for social science (Ish –Shalom) and surely it represents an essential element of contemporary art (Bruciati). Nevertheless implementing transparency in reality is more complex then one could think at the first glance.

Its legal meaning, that is to say transparent legal procedures, plays a fundamental role in the development of modern legal systems. The more sensitive the political problems are, the more important their transparent solution is – a clear example for that is the readmission of illegal emigrants in their countries of origin (Cassarino). Only through clearly established legal procedures one can verify the correct application of law and the respect of human rights.


From the beginning of the last century architects have been pursuing the dream of transparent buildings made of glass. For sure a fantastic vision, a technical and conceptual challenge. The fact is that the ideal of transparent architectures involves social and political values in a very strong way (Benjamin and Yang, Jarosinski). Invisible facades allow the view on interior spaces and therefore an unlimited enlargement of the public sphere. (D’Hooghe).


There are also authors who are skeptical about the concept of transparency conceived as mere visibility - in particular in our global world, in which everything seems to be reachable (Dianina). Difficulties are related with the potent medium of the cinema: the cinematographic art is probably nothing else than the attempt to overcome the exact reproduction of the reality (Gasparini). Ultimately, the paradox is that to achieve transparency one needs its contrary: opacity! (Fordyce).