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The First Kiss (Bending a Building)

Synthetic felt, sound loop on Compact Disc 11'11'', hidden sound system
Environmental dimensions

Photo © Giorgio Ciardo

Presented in the occasion of Elusive - Camere XI at RAM - Radio Arte Mobile - Rome
curated by Jimmie Durham

[...] Riccardo Benassi is (I should use capital letter) an artist of the city. His practice does often employ sound, but just as often architectural considerations. He is in the never-ending process of analyzing our collective life in the city, as a cosmopolitan who sees city life as something we make and re=make. That leads him to consider architecture from the inside out. [...] Benassi’s concern with architecture is always personal and social. He states that air conditioning, for example, modifies our concept of architecture just as sound modifies our concept of visual arts, and is invisible as much much as they are underestimated. His work here is titled, “The First Kiss (Bending a Building)”. The sound involved is his own voice versus, as he says, “the machine”. It begins rather benignly, rather quietly. The voice is in control; the machine is in the background. After a few minutes, however, “the machine”, which sounds like a distillation of many different noises of the city becomes steadily louder and more complex. The human voice tries to sing along or to argue. The sculptural elements of the work are like two shadows which have become solid. These two parts utilize the room perfectly. One enters through the window to steal a kiss from the room. It is the shadow of a building, perhaps. [...]

Jimmie Durham