Photo Credit: Alessandra Ferrini

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Event Details

Mon, February 12, 2024

18:00 – 19:30

Villa La Pietra
via Bolognese, 120
50139 Florence, Italy

Critical approaches to Italian colonialism through practice-based research

A dialogue with Alessandra Ferrini, artist, researcher, and educator, moderated by Mackda Ghebremariam Tesfau’, NYU Florence

Alessandra Ferrini’s practice interrogates the enduring legacies of Italian colonialism and Fascism, with a specific interest in the Mediterranean region. This presentation revolves around two interwoven bodies of work critically engaging with the Italian ‘archive of coloniality’ and its structuring violence. Emerging from the practice-based PhD research Gaddafi in Rome: Dissecting a Neocolonial Spectacle, the first body of work focuses on the Treaty on Friendship, Partnership and Cooperation between Italy and Libya signed in 2008 by Muammar Gaddafi and Silvio Berlusconi and, specifically on Gaddafi’s ensuing visit to Rome in 2009. In focusing on the genocide perpetrated by the Italians in Libya (late 1920s to mid 1930s), the second body of work investigates practices of censorship and resistance while devising approaches to avoid the spectacularisation and circulation of images of violence. Overall, the talk will shed light on artistic methodologies and approaches to public heritage, archival research, and translation.

In collaboration with Black History Month Florence.

Featured Biographies

Alessandra Ferrini


Alessandra Ferrinis an Italian-born, London-based artist, researcher, and educator. Experimenting with the expansion and hybridization of the essay film, her work spans from moving images and installation to performance-lecture, editorial and collaborative work. Her work has been featured in international exhibitions, publications and screenings, including Manifesta 12 and 13, Sharjah Film Platform, Casablanca Biennale, Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, and Villa Romana. She is the winner of the Maxxi Bvlgari Prize 2022 and was the recipient of the 2017 London Film Festival’s Experimenta Pitch Award. Currently, she is a PhD candidate at the University of the Arts London and Research Fellow at the British School at Rome.

Alessandra Ferrini has been selected to exhibit for the Italian Pavilion at the Venice Biennale 2024.