Our Daily Permanence, an exhibition by Michael Dean at Nomas Foundation

Curated by Cecilia Canziani and Ilaria Gianni

December 9 2010 – February 25 2011
Opening: Today, December 9 2010 – 7 pm
Nomas Foundation, viale Somalia, 33 – Rome

Your throat describes this.
Returns your touches.
The back of your neck to the front of this vertical intention.
Returns touches.
Taking the vertical intention of this built build to the front of your throat. The back of your neck. The small of your arms.
With the look of touch returned.
Your throats accuracy like your shoulders and wrists for this history of permanence.
My throats accuracy like my shoulders and wrists for this history of permanence.
The physical imitation. Take this buildings physical and vertical intention for permanence.
Lately impermanence.

Our Daily Permanence is a dialogue of voices discussing ideas of permanence and impermanence, history and imminence, physical imitation and emotional indentation. Responding to the layers of Rome’s history, the artist reflects on the column in its materiality and immateriality. A rock transformed into a stone structure that with time becomes rock once again, the column encompasses a history of substance, imminence and endurance. The shape undergoes a further transformation in correspondence to our own physical presence, relating to the neck, the throat and consequently to the notion of voice.

The voices of a dialogue, presented in an apparently infinite repetition, constitute the form of a diminishing book that will be dispersed within the city of Rome for the duration of the exhibition. The pages will be torn, given out and taken away into the world, into perpetuity. Somewhere, nowhere, endlessly the pages will travel in time and space. Taking up a new position and value within a daily permanence, becoming a subtle and new declaration of the monumental.

The dialogue transmutes into concrete objects and forms situated at the Nomas Foundation: a series of cylindrical variations on the analogue of the neck/throat positioned on plinths which correspond with the height of the work in relation to the artist’s own body. Two concretes made in analogue of the seat, are placed on the floor to produce ‘a handmade moraine’. On the wall, two vertical screens present a further mutation of the dialogue. The architectural structure takes the immaterial form of undulating movement composed of coloured light. Almost a scan, it is the palpable fluctuation of the voice reciting. The tangibility of the work pervades the space and brings back the text itself. Our Daily Permanence generates a translation of our own physical traces, while triggering a reciprocal correspondence between words, analogical objects, and time, thus inducing a new inscription of history, one of permanence. Our daily permanence.

The Look of Touch, the second step of the project developed by Michael Dean from Rome, will be running at Galleria Lorcan O’Neill Rome, from December 10, 2010


Michael Dean (Newcastle, 1977) lives and works in London. Among his exhibitions: Face, Supportico Lopez, Berlin; Symmetry of Intimacy, Laing Art Gallery, Newcastle Upon Tyne; The Floor is the Object, INDEPENDENT, New York; tolerance, Scaramouche, New York; Her body in the same place as my body, Alessandro De March, Milan, Blindsides, Laura Bartlett Gallery, London, Fade Into You, curated by Nicky Verber, Herald Street Gallery, London.

Founded in 2008 by Stefano and Raffaella Sciarretta, Nomas Foundation aims at supporting and promoting contemporary research in art. The programme, curated by Cecilia Canziani and Ilaria Gianni, concentrates on critical art practices that explore and challenge different modes of presentation.

Image credits:

Michael Dean, Our Daily Permanence
Cuortesy: Supportico Lopez, Berlin