XX: Women, "Made in the South of Italy"





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Uploaded on Jan 14, 2009

XX: Women, Made in the South of Italy
Many women in San Luca are mothers, wives and even accomplices of mobsters, but some are standing up to the powerful Ndrangheta and calling for peace.*

Onishi Gallery will present the first exhibit of XX: Women, Made in the South of Italy/XX: Donne, Create nel sud Italia, contemporary Italian art based on the San Luca Womens Movement of Southern Italy, January 8 - 21, 2009. A little over a year ago when Rosy Canale, a businesswoman and volunteer social worker in Calabria (the toe-of-the-boot region and poorest area of Italy), organized the San Luca Womens Movement into a sewing collective to preserve the areas tradition of hand-loomed and hand-crafted flax, silk and straw textiles, to give the towns women a small income and to improve the image of a place known as the home of Italys most powerful and dangerous mafia, the Ndrangheta (pronounced en-DRAHN-geh-tah), her car was burned and she was threatened. Today, with 300 members selling their handmade placemats, table runners and linen towels outside their community, the women are using their influence to break the century old cycle of Mafia crime that has increased drastically in the past few years when the Ndrangheta took over lucrative cocaine routes from Latin America to Europe, a multibillion-dollar enterprise.

*For more information on the women of San Luca, please read Tracy Wilkinsons article in the Los Angeles Times. October 3, 2008: http://articles.latimes.com/2008/oct/...

Now Rosy Canale and artist, Pamela Cento, are curating a show of 13 Italian artists, inspired by these fearless, courageous women who dared to say No to unending violence that would engulf, yet another generation of their relatives. The exhibit in New York which will feature installations, new photography and video artworks, will travel for shows in Berlin (Three people from San Luca, including a 16-year-old boy, and three others from nearby Calabrian towns were gunned down outside a pizzeria in Duisburg, Germany, in 2007, in what authorities called a revenge hit in an escalating Ndrangheta feud.) and Rome in March.

Artists participating in the Group Show at Onishi Gallery include: Nicola Bettale, Nadia Cadeddu, Alberto Cecchi, Pamela Cento, Monica Di Brigida, Pierluca Di Pasquale, Gianni Godi, Francesca Lepori, Filippo Malice, Roger Nicotera, Raffaele Mortelliti, Emanuela Passacantilli, Rosella Sale, Gianluca Tamorri. Simona Spagnoli is the Coordinator. These artists express the brave, defiant spirit of the San Luca women in a creative contemporary range of styles and media that is uniquely Italian, Nana Onishi, Onishi Gallery owner, explained. I am delighted to introduced their work to America.

This art project, with collaboration from scholars, journalists and leading figures in the world of Italian Art, is designed to show that San Luca is a town with new values of rehabilitation, peace and renewal. It is sponsored by several institutions: Italian Ministry of Cultural Heritage, Italian Cultural Institute of New York, Italian Welfare Department, The Province of Reggio Calabria, Equal Opportunities Commission of the Province of Reggio Calabria, The Regional Council of Calabria, Department of Social Policies of the Municipality of Reggio Calabria, Ndrangheta Museum of Reggio Calabria, Ente Parco Aspromonte of Reggio Calabria, Academy of Fine Arts of Reggio Calabria, University of Perugia (Multimedia Design Department, Science & Technology in Artistic Production), University of Rome La Sapienza (Cultural Anthropology Department).

For more information about the San Luca Women's Movement, please visit their website at:

(c) WVVH-TV 2009 All Rights Reserved


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