The first Biennale dedicated to female photography and work, directed by Alessia Locatelli, arrives in Mantua.
From March5-8, 2020.
The city of Mantua is getting ready to welcome the first edition of the Biennale of Female Photography from 5 to 8 March 2020. It will focus the spotlight on the world seen and photographed by women.
The look behind the lens is of artists from all over the world, including Annalisa Natali Murri, Nausicaa Giulia Bianchi, Eliza Bennett, Erika Larsen, Betty Colombo.
The idea of creating a Biennale based on the female gaze was born from the desire to offer women spaces to exhibit and talk freely about their work. As our system does not allow us to be fully ourselves. The topic is the work. It is a very precise and defined choice open to different genres that could be part of the next editions. Indeed, in an attempt to raise awareness of equality as much as possible, the inclusive approach is fundamental.
The Biennale and the city
Mantua was defined and desired from the beginning. In fact, the link with the city is very deep. The Biennale had a concrete support in the organization and some of its most beautiful buildings will frame the photos. The twelve exhibitions are hosted in beautiful public and private locations around the city. It will be an opportunity to visit monumental realities such as Palazzo Te, Rigoletto and the Drawing Gallery and discover galleries such as Corraini Edizioni, the Painter’s house and Bernardelli space. Furthermore, it was in Mantua that the La Papessa Association was born in 2018, which gave birth to the project and after the Biennal it will continue to deal with photography and promotion. And there are many collaborations related to the Mantuan territory, among them the BAM Foundation already active with photography and the publication of photographic books.
The main theme is very broad and the goal is to dissect it critically. After all, photography can be a powerful means of investigation and this biennial wants to offer everyone simple tools and opportunities to do it.
The power of the topic is clear and emblematic from the beginning, right from the image chosen for communication. It is taken from a video by the English artist Eliza Bennet: it was chosen to tell the effort of women at work. On the one hand it is a reflection on sewing denoted as typically female work, on the other it is a concrete reference to the theme with one of the main work tools, always. In fact, the hand.
It is a very precise stance. Talking about work through the image in such a complex moment means wanting to be a stimulus for the whole cultural system to face it in a critical sense and at the same time bring many people together. The work concerns everyone, it is a universal theme, both in its presence and in its absence. Create neighborhoods or distances, bonds and separations, sometimes struggles, in any way you touch us. However it affects us. It is a macro theme so rich in facets and problems that it allows you to touch even under themes, certainly not minority ones, such as the gender gap and exploitation.
Not only exhibitions
The program is not limited to the 12 exhibitions organized in the different spaces made available in the city. It consists of events that enrich the opportunities for discussion on the topic. Conferences, portfolio readings and three workshops are planned by Sara Lando, Betty Colombo and Letizia Battaglia, spokesman for the never-resigned research of expressive independence on a par with colleagues.
There will also be screenings, film presentations and books related to the topic of work. Among others, the film “The female work of yesterday and today between patriarchal question and exploitation”, the projection “Being women” under the direction of Cecilia Mangimi, work born in ’64 and presentation of the book “Oro Rosso” by Stefania Brandi who is a freelance artist.
It will be intense days, we will talk about femininity and conditions of minority, free expression and struggle against the ghettoization of thought.
As proof of the effective understanding of these points of view and the objectives of the event, I hope to meet and confront myself with many men.
5-8 March 2020, Mantua.
The exhibitions set up in the historical places of the city will remain active on weekends throughout the month of March, from 5 to 29 March.
Find out more info here:
Book your ticket here
Article by Maria Serena Bongiovanni
Ph Credit: Official website and FB page