Fondazione Merz

Masbedo, Todestriebe, 2014. Single-channel video, HD file. Courtesy Massimo Antichi, Beatrice Bulgari, Snaporazverein, Sammlung Wemhöner.

October 2, 2014


October 4, 2014–January 11, 2015

Opening: Friday, October 3, 7pm, with live performance

Fondazione Merz
Via Limone 24 
10141 Torino Italy
Hours: Tuesday–Sunday 11am–7pm

T +39 011 19719437 
info [​at​]

Curated by Olga Gambari

Fondazione Merz presents Todestriebe, a project by Masbedo (Nicolò Massazza and Iacopo Bedogni) offering an examination of the theme of lack of communication as a characteristic aspect of the human condition. The event also coincides with the release of the duo’s first long feature film The Lack presented at the 71st Venice International Film Festival in the section Giornate degli Autori (Venice Days).

The project revolves around the exhibition at the Fondazione featuring nine video works, some of which are site-specific while others span the last ten years of the artists’ production. It has been conceived as a single installation site connecting all the works and taking up the entire exhibition space to transform it into an immersive environment, into which visitors can dive as they journey through the exhibited works.

The duo’s work provides the backdrop to several reflections and investigations that explore art’s relationship with theatre, cinema, literature, music, dance, as well as art’s visionary quality and ability to represent nature and the human condition. Powerful yet refined, Masbedo’s visual imagery owes much to art history and the ongoing search for the total work of art, as a natural aspiration and the ideal realization of artistic production.

The journey begins with Trilogia dell’Incomunicabilità (Lack of Communication Trilogy) including Teorema di incompletezza (Theorem of Incompleteness, 2008), Ionesco Suite (2013), theatres of the absurd where difficulty in relationship is the focus and Todestriebe (2014), to be created during the artist’s opening-night performance, where a male public witnesses the cruelest form of feminine pleasure: that of the praying mantis, which during mating devours her mate. A situation is overturned, the male is placed in a dangerous position as he waits, anguished at the mercy of the female other.

Difficulty in relationships is also the focus of 11.22.03 (2002) and of the new work Le voeu (The Vow, 2014). We then analyze a collective failure, that of social utopias with I have a dream (2011) to the humanity’s funeral, definitely denying all possible communication with the sacred of Ash (2010). In the work 2.59 (2014), a small, dramatic gesture erases any trace of hope, it is no longer possible to dream, it is absolute silence.

The interaction with the figure and work of Mario Merz will be central to the exhibition. Starting with the famous Lumaca (Snail) video filmed by Gerry Schum in 1970 while Mario Merz was drawing a spiral on some glass, the Masbedo invited a group of international video artists (Lin de Mol, Gianluca e Massimiliano De Serio, Rä Di Martino, Jan Fabre, Shaun Gladwell, Sigalit Landau, Marzia Migliora, Damir Ocko, Nicolas Provost, Catherine Sullivan) to confront this historic work and its message by creating a collective work. It becomes both the point of arrival and the essential turning point of the idea from which the exhibit Todestriebe originated, that of lack of communication. Its positive message is ascribed to the action of art itself, as the only dimension and area of thought that can be an element of communication, capable of becoming a word, a shared emotion.

The project involves other important city Institutions to further explore the artists’ work. On October 15 the National Museum of Cinema in Turin will host the premiere of the film The Lack and, on October 20, an afternoon screening of some of their videos. In September the Scuola Holden together with the Accademia Albertina delle Belle Arti di Torino has hosted a workshop held by Masbedo on the practice and the conceptual and creative aspects of video in contemporary art.

Accompanying the project is a catalogue published by Fondazione Merz with essays by Olga Gambari, Michel Maffesoli, Monique Veaute, Chantal Nava and texts by Michel Houellebecq and Walter Siti.

Main sponsors
In Between Art Film, Snaporazverein, Viglietta Matteo S.p.a., Sammlung Wemhöner 

With the support of:
Fondazione CRT, Collezione Massimo Antichi and Nomas Foundation

Press contacts
Fondazione Merz: Nadia Biscaldi 
T +39 01119719436 / +39 3493444501 / press [​at​]

Masbedo at Fondazione Merz
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October 2, 2014

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