‘Descension’: a Perpetual Black Water Whirlpool Installation in an Old Italian Movie Theater

If you find yourself in San Gimignano, Italy’s Galleria Continua, be sure to watch your step. You may fall into an endlessly swirling whirlpool of black water. It is artist and designer Anish Kapoor’s installation in this Galleria, a movie-theater-turned-gallery.

The piece is installed into the floor over a black surface, which makes it look like a vortex of bottomless water. In addition, the motion of the water makes the liquid circulate and froth, further adding to the illusion of an endless pit.

Kapoor explains the motivation behind his work in a Galleria Continua press release:

All my life I have reflected and worked on the concept that there is more space than can be seen, that there are void spaces, or, as it were, that there is a vaster horizon. The odd thing about removing content, in making space, is that we, as human beings, find it very hard to deal with the absence of content…It is the place of the void, which paradoxically is full – of fear, of darkness.

Descension was on view at the gallery through May 9th.

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