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Event Details

Thu, June 05, 2014 to Fri, June 06, 2014

18:30 – 22:30

Villa La Pietra, Pomario
Via Bolognese, 120
50139 Firenze, ITALY

Dialogues and readings with contemporary American and Italian writers, two concerts with performative poetry and Italian songwriting. Villa La Pietra as an open villa and garden for contemporary literature. (English / Italian with translation).

Featured Biographies

Thom Donovan


Thom Donovan is a poet, editor, curator, and teacher currently living in Brooklyn, New York. His poems and essays have appeared widely in print and online journals, and his first trade edition book, The Hole, appeared with Displaced Press in 2012. His second book of poems, Withdrawn, will be out with Compline later this year. He is the co-editor and publisher of ON Contemporary Practice, an online journal and print monograph series for critical writings about one’s contemporaries. From 2010-2012 he edited the column 5 Questions for Contemporary Practice at Art21 blog. He is the editor of Supple Science: a Robert Kocik Primer (with Michael Cross; ON Contemporary Practice Monograph Series, 2013) and To Look At The Sea Is To Become What One Is: an Etel Adnan Reader (with Brandon Shimoda; Nightboat Books, spring 2014). He teaches courses in poetics and writing at School of Visual Arts, Parsons, and Pratt Institute and holds a Ph.D. in English from SUNY-Buffalo. From 2011-2013 he served as Archive Manager for the Byrd Hoffman Water Mill Foundation. He has been a fellow at the Akademie Schloss Solitude.

Dorothea Lasky


Dorothea Lasky is the author of ROME (Liveright/W.W. Norton, 2014), as well as Thunderbird, Black Life, and AWE, all out from Wave Books. She is a co-editor of Open the Door: How to Excite Young People About Poetry (McSweeney’s, 2013) and has authored many chapbooks, including Poetry is Not a Project (Ugly Duckling Presse, 2010). Her poems have appeared in numerous places, including The Paris Review and POETRY. She holds a doctorate in creativity and education from the University of Pennsylvania and has been educated at Harvard University, the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, and Washington University. She is an Assistant Professor of Poetry at Columbia University’s School of the Arts, is a co-founder of the Ashbery Home School, served as a 2013 Bagley Wright Lecturer in Poetry, and co-directs Writers in Florence with Jessica Flynn. She lives in Brooklyn and can be found online at

Gian Maria Annovi


Gian Maria Annovi is the author of Denkmal (l’Obliquo, 1998); Terza persona cortese (d’if, 2007); Self-eaters (Mazzoli, 2007); Kamikaze e altre persone (Transeuropa, 2010); Italics (Nino Aragno, 2013); La scolta (nottetempo, 2013). His poems have appeared in the anthologies L’opera comune (Atelier, 2001), Parco Poesia (Guaraldi, 2003), Nodo sottile 4 (Crocetti, 2004), Poesie dell’inizio del mondo (Derive e Approdi, 2007), Calpestare l’oblio (Cattedrale, 2010), Poeti italiani in America (In forma di parole, 2011), Poeti degli anni Zero (Ponte Sisto, 2012). He received the Mazzacurati-Russo Prize for Poetry in 2006, and the Marazza Prize in 2014. As a critic, Annovi published Altri corpi: poesia e corporalità negli anni Sessanta (Gedit, 2008). He is the editor of Antonio Porta’s selected poems Piercing the Page (Seismicity, 2012) and of a collection of essays on Pier Paolo Pasolini, Fratello selvaggio: P. P. Pasolini fra gioventù e nuova gioventù (Transeuropa, 2013). He translated into Italian several North-American poets, Anna Carson, Michael Palmer, Bruce Andrews, Joseph Ceravolo and Anselm Berrigan, among others. He holds a Ph.D. in Italian Studies from Columbia University and a doctorate in Contemporary Italian Literature from the University of Bologna. He is an Assistant Professor of French and Italian at USC – University of Southern California in Los Angeles.

Diego Bertelli


Diego Bertelli has published essays, articles, and translations of his Italian and international journals, as well as his blog Le Parole e Le Cose, Minimaetmoralia, and Puntocritico. He works and reviews Italian literature of the late twentieth century with the magazine Atelier and he is the curator of the official website of Bartolo Cattafi. In 2005, he published L’imbuto di ciocciola (Firenze, Edizioni della Meridiana, Premio Astrolabio Opera Prima 2008). In 2011 he was a finalist for the Alinari award with Lo stato delle cose in sospeso, out of Italian Poetry Review, 6, 2011. His story, Il sogno di Amanda, appeared in the anthology Toscani Maledetti, edited by Raoul Bruni (Prato, Edizioni Piano B, 2013).

Jonathan Lethem


Jonathan Lethem is the author of nine novels, including Motherless Brooklyn (winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award), The Fortress of Solitude, You Don’t Love Me Yet, Chronic City, and most recently, Dissident Gardens. He is also the author of numerous collections, including Men and Cartoons, The Disappointment Artist, and The Wall of the Sky, Wall of the Eye. A New York Times bestselling author and recipient of a MacArthur fellowship, Lethem has published his stories and essays in The New Yorker, Harper’s, Rolling Stone, Esquire, and The New York Times, among others. He lives in California. Visit Lethem’s website at

Raoul Bruni


Raoul Bruni is born in Florence in 1979. Italianist and literary critic, he contributes for various academic journals and literary reviews. His most recent books are the essay Il divino entusiasmo dei poeti (Aragno 2010), the edition of Giovanni Papini’s Cento pagine di poesia (Quodlibet, 2013) and the anthology Toscani maledetti (Piano B, 2013).

Giorgio Vasta


Giorgio Vasta (Palermo, 1970) lives and works in Rome. He published the novel Il tempo materiale (minimum fax 2008, City of Viagrande Prize 2010, Ulysse Prix du Premier Roman 2011, published in France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Netherlands, Spain, Hungary, Czech Republic, United States and England, selected for the Strega Prize 2009, finalist in the Dessi Prize, Berto Prize and Dedalus Prize), Spaesamento (Laterza 2010, finalist in the Bergamo Prize, published in France), Presente (Einaudi 2012, with Andrea Bajani, Michela Murgia, Paolo Nori). With Emma Dante, and with the collaboration of Licia Eminenti, wrote the screenplay for the movie Via Castellana Bandiera (2013), in competition at the 70th edition of the Venice Film Festival. He collaborates with La Repubblica, Il Sole 24 Ore, and Il Manifesto, and he writes on the literary blog In 2010 he won Lo Straniero Prize and the Dal testo allo schermo Prize of Salina Doc Festival.

Alessandro Raveggi


(Florence, 1980) Author, scholar, and Professor of Modern Italian Literature at New York University, Florence campus, he held a Postdoc in Italian Studies at Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México for two years. He wrote the novel Nella vasca dei terribili piranha (Effigie, 2012), the essays Calvino Americano (Le Lettere, 2012), Il saggio in viaggio (Mucchi, forthcoming), the first Italian introduction to David Foster Wallace (Doppiozero, 2014), the collections of poems La trasfigurazione degli animali in bestie (Transeuropa, 2011) and Disney contro le metafisiche (Zona, Leve48, 2008), the series of short stories Talenti da export / Le vite illustri for the Italian newspaper La Repubblica (2012-2013) among other publications in fiction, non-fiction and poetry in Italian and international web-magazines, academic and literary reviews, anthologies

Vanni Santoni


Vanni Santoni was born in 1978 in Montevarchi. After his debut book Personaggi precari (RGB 2007, then Voland 2013), he published, among others, the novels Gli interessi incomune (Feltrinelli 2008), Se fossi fuoco arderei Firenze (Laterza 2011), Terra ignota (Mondadori 2013) and, as founder and coordinator, In territorio nemico (minimum fax 2013). He writes for Corriere Fiorentino and La Lettura. Since 2012 he is publishing director for fiction of Tunué – Editori dell’immaginario.



Bettibarsantini is a band created by Marco Parente and Alessandro Fiori. The name is an homage to their professional punk muse, Betty Barsantini, journalist queen of the regional TG news channel. Their first album, released in January by Malintenti Dischi, which had been preceded by the single Dissocial Network, seems to have already conquered the critics and not only. In very few weeks they reached the top charts of BEST LIVE in January edited by KeepOn and voted by local artistic directors. Accompanied by the base guitar of Lorenzo Maffucci (member of BlueWilla and at this point the third element of BettiBarsantini), the two founders of the band are on a tour with an important live set and not at all-like folk music. It is therefore a concert rich of groove and many afro-punk sounds, for listeners that don’t say no to a dancing floor.