Trojan Horse

16.09.22 – 09.11.22

Opening 15 September, 6.30 – 8.30 pm

Download the press release / comunicato stampa: ITEN

Download the text by Barbara Casavecchia: ITEN

Set up in the gallery spaces, Trojan Horse continues the investigation begun by the artistic duo RM with the exhibition Bloodsuckers, held at the Swiss Institute in New York in winter 2022. For their first solo exhibition in Italy, the duo – founded in 2015 and based between Geneva and Berlin – proposes a new set of works evoking bedbugs as “carriers of invisible Others”: a pair of double sheets and their pillowcases with crocheted embroidered inserts and a wooden sculpture that faithfully reproduces a prototype of the vacuum cleaner.

Making ample use of irony and dark humour, RM explores the mechanics of transmission, the secrecy of nocturnal intimacy, the “fictitious and sacred space of privacy.” Linguistic detours, stigma and shame are transformed into tools for claiming our history, bringing to the surface the inequalities that pervade contemporary society.

“Bedbugs (cimex lectularius) use vacuum cleaners to travel, propagating from one o”ce or apartment to another as they are swept up by domestic pieceworkers. Industrial vacuum cleaners, which promise the aseptic gift of cleanliness, are their Trojan horses: they become carriers of invisible Others, whose hosts we become. Even the bugs and viruses that infest our computers use Trojans to enter, grow and multiply, invading the fictitious and sacred space of privacy. Many compartmentalisations between inside and outside are illusions, and it is salubrious for them to flake, like our skin, inhabited by the dermal microbiota (mites, mycetes, bacteria and viruses), the commensal that helps us get rid of dead cells: the higher the biodiversity, the fewer the potential pathogens” (From the text by Barbara Casavecchia).


The artist duo, founded in Geneva in 2015 and formerly known as Real Madrid, recently changed their name in the wake of a legal dispute. De-christened, they now proceed under the name RM.

Their work has been exhibited in private and public institutions such as the Swiss Institute New York, Aye-Aye Copenhagen, CCS Paris, Macro Rome, CAC Geneva, the Rome Quadriennale, Migros Museum Zurich, ICA Milan, Plymouth Rock Zurich. In 2018 they were artists-in-residence at FAAP Sao Paulo and ProHelvetia Johannesburg; and in 2017 at the Goethe Institute São Paulo. They received a Swiss Art Award in 2018 and were finalists for the BNP Paribas Prize in 2017. In 2019–20 they were fellows at the Swiss Institute in Rome.

In 2023 they will exhibit at the CEC in Geneva and at Auto Italia in London.