What would a work of art look like that retains what has been discarded in the production process and
makes this visible? In other words, if nothing remains external to the work?
Federico Cavallini conceived his series Behind the Glasses for the villa's glass exhibition pavilion,
contrasting its transparence with an aesthetic of rubbish. The work is a monument to all that is thrown
away; it can be walked around on the outside and entered from the inside. This is not a hothouse in which
anything grows, however; this is a place of conservation.
material consists of candy and mouse poison, collectible stickers and porno images, packaging,
pictures of saints and cigarette butts, fish-glue watercolors and spray-painted graffiti. Cavallini collects all
these things destined to be thrown away and forgotten, and in doing so, he interrupts functional processes
—as he did in earlier works consisting of fallen leaves, washing machine lint, defective handicraft goods.
Cavallini takes things meant to be forgotten and archives and conserves them; vacuum-packed in plastic or
grouped together in Plexiglas containers, they remain visible.
The sheer amount of material discarded is huge, it is too much, too many things, too much information. A
transformation of everyday hyper-consumerism, a disposal action that nonetheless reawakens memories
and feelings of guilt, fear, and aggression. In the process, Cavallini evaluates nothing. Thus, the rubbish he
saves from obscurity creates history and renders it visible.