Untitled / The unbearable lightness of being | Istituto Svizzero, Roma, 2017

print on plexiglass, grips

This work its part of the ongoing project The Unbearable Lightness of Being that I developed during my residency at the MASS MOCA Museum (MA).


It is a series of reflections on the nature of light and on the global climate situation, generated by personal scientific readings, dialogues and collaborations with atmospheric physicists and also a reflection about the notion of boundary: What is a border? /What happens when we we cross it? / What happens when we destroy it? / What if we try to control it?

The idea is to call into question, perhaps for the first time in human history, the archetype of the rainbow (a symbol of positivity present in all historical, literary, religious, anthropological documents) and transform it into a symptom of global warming caused by human “lightness”, but also by the violation of natural, ethical and symbolic boundaries between nature and man.

For this reason, I took a photo of a real rainbow’s fragment and created an X-ray of the sky on plexiglass, trapping it in a vise.

The fragility of the image in contrast with the vise instrument, which supports but threatens to grip at the same time the thin slab, symbolizes man’s attempt to control nature generating irreversible changes on the balance of the world.

The colours of the grips are are taken from the colors that the NASA uses for the atmospheric measurements and not only.

The fluo text distributed during the exhibition at the Swiss Institute of Rom, "La vita della mente" was born by the dialogue between me and Daniel Cziczo (Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences - Civil and Environmental Engineering - MIT - Massachusetts Institute of Technology).

© 2020 Federica Di Carlo, all rights reserved