Novocomum on Wheels
Mixed-Media, Sound Installation;  Chora;  

The artist Maria Papadimitriou was invited to Como to develop a project for the Associazione Culturale Borgovico33. [...] Instead of creating a mobile caravan as had been expected of her, Papadimitriou went after Terragni himself, putting a set of rubber tires under the Novocomum.

Originally Papadimitriou intended the wheeled tower to be pulled by a horse through the city, but this became quickly impractical if not clumsy. She had imagined George Clooney on horseback pulling the piece around, since he, along with Giuseppe Terragni, are the two most illustrious people associated with Como in the contemporary imagination. [...]

The Novocomum on Wheels reads like a political manifesto. The rolling tower breaks free of its foundation moorings, rupturing in a single gesture the connection to the city’s historical destiny. Floating, so to speak, above the political noise of the previous century, the liberated. Novocomum assumes an entirely new transgressive identity. Papadimitriou’s fragmented object can be fused to a multiplicity of alternative contexts, an abandoned church, a contemporary streetscape, a digital network, a conceptual 3 dimensional forum. The hybrid product reasserts its independence precisely by spectacularizing its mundane content, setting forth new dialectic possibilities both in relation to itself and in relation to the city of Como.

Peter Lang

Excerpts from “The Novocomun Liberated,” in exh. cat. Direct Architecture Politics and Space, pp. 15-17.