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Breathing Staircases by Silvio Wolf

In collaboration with two international academic institutions, the School of Visual Arts (SVA – New York City) and the Istituto Europeo di Design (IED – Milan), and with technical partner Epson, MEET presents the first European exhibition of Silvio Wolf with the collective One&Seven.

Breathing Staircases is the first site-specific work realised for MEET’s Living Staircase. Conceived as an immersive video and audio installation, it spans all floors and surfaces of this particular architectural space of the building: the vibrant core of physical communication that connects the exhibition, service and office spaces of the “vertical piazza” designed by Carlo Ratti to “explore the meaning of physical space in a digital world”. The architectural space is intense as a multi-sensory and dynamic living organism, intimate and personal: a place of participatory response to a collective breath reflecting art, philosophy, poetry and life.

Through simultaneous 7-channel multi-projection, with a layering of images animated by the sound of voices and the artists’ breathing, Silvio Wolf together with One&Seven transforms the futuristic Staircase into a pulsating body, placing itself in a physical and symbolic relationship with all those who use it during the daily life of the Centre.

Visitors enjoy an experiential and meditative fruition of the primordial condition of breathing through their personal, physical and emotional involvement, immersed in an extraordinary place of vision and listening.

Breathing Staircases offers a horizontal and vertical space of experience through fluid and inclusive movement: an expression of the Singular and Collective Universe of which all who access it become an active and conscious part.


One&Seven was formed as a collective from the encounter and academic journey of seven artists identified by a wide range of artistic and media practices, under the guidance of Silvio Wolf at the School of Visual Arts in New York. Coming from different backgrounds and practices, they came together with the desire to manifest a path that leads to the unveiling of the known and the unknown, the visible and the invisible.

Breathing Staircases is the result of the research that the group develops around its individual and collective identity, and interpersonal relational dynamics. Through the interpretation of the idea of breathing, they search for collective expression and the embodiment of their relationship with the world.

They include multimedia artists Silvio Wolf and Lisa di Donato, photographer James Weber, sculptor Leah Poller, artists Farah Marie Velten and Judith Lipton and photographer – social activist Rick Raymond.


The work was realised with the collaboration of:
> Davide Sgalippa: Director with Rossella Bertolazzi of the IED Milan School of Visual Arts; lecturer at IED Milan and the Academy of Fine Arts in Palermo; exhibition and multimedia designer of TheBuss group
> Marco Ferrari: Digital Designer, video and audio designer at IED Milan
> Solian Clerici: Exhibition and Light Designer at IED Milan and TheBuss