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Within the globalist neoliberal paradigm, sleeping is for losers. For the late-capitalist system, sleep is equivalent to an unproductive time, an interval of time that theoretically cannot be colonized, thus a point of crisis when compared to the notion of profitability. If 24/7 Capitalism has put an end to the obvious distinction between day and night, light and dark, action and rest, the individual and community, likewise it has produced a brand new paradigmatic landscape which atmospheric and sociological qualities resemble a zone of overall amnesia and deprived of the possibility of experience. This invisible and pervasive landscape resembles a state of emergency, in which buildings are always lit during night time, a problem never solved but tamed as a permanent condition, accelerating the exhaustion of life, resources, and bodies.

In I See That I See What You Don’t See, the official Dutch contribution to the Triennale Milano, Het Nieuwe Instituut continues the discussion on the complex relationships between light and dark, between seeing and not seeing, as a starting point for an exploration of their conflicting effects on humans, the Earth and other organisms.

A unique form of friction has arisen over imposed powers, particularly those enforced by a capitalised western world on other geographies during the dark of night. The human body can therefore be seen as an extractive resource in a 24/7 universe characterised by outsourcing and night shifts. Danilo Correale, whose work The Unsleep is included in the Dutch pavilion, discusses these developments with Erica Petrillo, part of the curatorial team of Broken Nature curated by Paola Antonelli. Angela Rui will moderate the conversation.

The Unsleep

The Unsleep is a photographic tale at the edge of sci-fi and reality, partially adapted from the eponymous 1962 novel by Meir and Diane Gillion. From a portrayal of the telecommunications workers employed in the outsourced service industries, the project articulates the invisible domain of time-zones over geographical territories. The employees in this spaceless time often become characters in contemporary Indian and Filipino fictional literature, their lives dominated by artificial light and darkness, with long shifts in front of screens, performing tedious tasks and phone calls where regional accents are normalised to better suit customers located at the opposite end of the globe.

This is a world divided into several, often incoherent, representations – the economic one in which territories have ceased to bear significance, and the politico-cultural one increasingly concerned with borders. The night, as well as the relationship of sleep and wakefulness – modes of production and consumption that define a new chrono-imperialistic domain – become the paradigmatic landscape of this new frontier.

The conversation will be in Italian.

Danilo Correale

Danilo Correale is an Italian artist and researcher living and working in New York and Naples. In his work he analyses aspects of human life, such as labour-leisure and sleep, under the lenses of time and body. His work has been recognized internationally and presented in numerous Biennials, Triennials and group exhibitions. Correale is the founder of the Decelerationist Reader. He recently published They Will Say I Killed Them, NERO Publications, Rome (2018); Reverie. On The Liberation From Work, New York (2018); The Game - A three sided football match, FeC,Fabriano (2014) and No More Sleep No More, Archive Books Berlin, (2015).

Erica Petrillo

After working in the Research & Development Department of MoMA (New York), Erica Petrillo is currently based in Milan, where she is part of the team led by Paola Antonelli that curated the XXII Triennale di Milan – Broken Nature. Erica holds a bachelor’s in politics, Sociology and Psychology from Cambridge (2014) and a master’s in arts, Politics and Society from Maastricht University (2016).

21:00 – 23:00

Fanta Spazio
Via Merano, 21
Milano, Italy



Free event

Guus Beumer, artistic and general director, Het Nieuwe Instituut
Angela Rui, Marina Otero Verzier, Francien van Westrenen
Rudy Guedj
Olivier Goethals