26.01 / 26.04.2013

Giulio Romano has realised an amazing fresco cycle of The Fall of the Titans in a room in the Palazzo del Te in Mantua. A sense of gravity, weight and the relationship between image and space connect those 16th century frescos with the video that Christian Niccoli presents on the ceiling of the exhibition space of l'Ozio.
Die Kollektive Last is a vertical projection in which the ceiling of the space is used as the surface for the display of a video from 2011.
Several people are attempting to hold up an apparently heavy surface. The central position of the camera is dizzying and makes the whole setting seem like something fragile and dangerous that is barely maintained. The upwards perspective increases the sense of weight and gravity of the image to an extent that the spectator, from the bottom, almost participates in the collective condition of having to bear this undefined weight. Indeed, it is never completely clear what kind of surface it concerns. Only those who carry it have knowledge thereof. It also remains unclear what kind of material it is and it thus remains a mysterious and undefined mass that is hovering over the visitors. The dark tones give the work a dramatic dimension.
Another video clarifies the view of the artist on our collective search for a nearly impossible equilibrium. Ohne Titel (No Title) is a constantly repeated video that shows five people in search for balance on an object of which the form refers to the language of minimal sculpture. The video, shot in black and white, is an attempt to show how precarious and nearly impossible this equilibrium becomes when everybody attempts to stay balanced at the same time.

In his artistic research, Niccoli is attentive to current cultural and social circumstances. The relationship between the large transformations that have changed our way of viewing the world and the importance of collective responsibility are evident in the works displayed.
A vision on art that reflects a point of view concerning the existential condition in which contemporary Europe finds itself. From this perspective, Niccoli realises a metaphor on precariousness employed by the language of art to document a continuously changing present.

Text by Lorenzo Benedetti

Christian Niccoli - Die Kollektive Last

Christian Niccoli - Die Kollektive Last


Born 1976 in Bolzano (IT).
Lives and works in Berlin (DE).

Website: www.christianniccoli.eu

Christian Niccoli - Ohne Titel

Christian Niccoli - Ohne Titel

On Screening:
Die Kollektive Last (HD, 2'30'', 2011)
Ohne Titel (HD, 45'', 2011)

Selected Films:
Händler der vier Jahreszeiten (Rainer Werner Fassbinder 1971)
Benny's Video (Michael Haneke 1992)
Enter the Void (Gaspar Noé 2009)


Curated by Marco Nember
Developed in collaboration with
the Italian Institute of Culture in
Amsterdam between May 2009
and September 2013