Prof. Giovanna Zapperi: The end of the creative genius? Women artists in Italy, 1960s-1970s


  • 1.30pm

  • Online

Chair: Dr Angela Dimitrakaki

The narrative of postwar art in Italy is still largely dominated by a model of supersession, which translates a hegemonic and linear construction that has actively contributed in erasing women and other subaltern subjects. In my contribution, I propose a re-vision of this narrative by looking at the counter-models proposed by art critics Carla Lonzi and Anne Marie Sauzeau Boetti in their readings of the works of Carla Accardi, Marisa Merz, and Suzanne Santoro. While contesting the verticality of male genealogies, they have fostered a horizontal model that left aside the admiration for the great artist, in order to focus the relations, experiences, and life forms that emerged in the art of their time.

Giovanna Zapperi is Professor for contemporary art history at Université de Tours. Her latest book examines the writings of art critic and radical Italian feminist Carla Lonzi: Carla Lonzi. Un’arte della vita [Carla Lonzi: an Art of Life] Rome, 2017 (french translation: Dijon 2019). In 2019-2020, together with Nataša Petrešin-Bachelez, she has recently curated the exhibition Defiant Muses: Delphine Seyrig and Feminist Video Collectives in France, 1970s-1980s (LaM, Lille and Museo Reina Sofia, Madrid).