Naima Morelli

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a0
Derailing and getting back on track: story of my life. I’m the girl who is most fascinated and enticed by the idea of reinventing herself, of wearing new different clothes, of starting all over again as a blank slate. Thing is we are never a blank slate. And this is good in a way. My core is strong, and like Rogue from the X Men, I can absorb the powers of others, but my own personal power is in fact to absorb other people’s power. A bit of shameless pride: my superpower is imagination and the aesthetic alchemical transformation for things into beauty. It is about seeing the beautiful aspects in joy, pain, everything I decide to give my attentions to – pretty much like Rogue who absorbs the powers and memories of those who she touches.

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artapartpisani

Little post to say that Art a part of Cult(ure) – the Rome-based art web magazine I have been writing for since 2010 – has just published the Italian version of my interview with the one and only Elizabeth Pisani, badass adventurer and epidemiologist (that’s right!), trawling around Indonesia to write the tome “Indonesia Etc.” The interview happened thanks to the mediation of another wonderful kickass gal, Ilaria Benini from the publishing house ADD Editore – you might want to google her to check the work she has done in Myanmar as well.

Here is the link to the interview 

Also, another set of considerations, since this morning I feel talkative. What would you do in life if you hadn’t any obligation  or responsibility? This is a recurrent topic I have been discussing with my friends and my ninjas lately. In my case, I had no doubt: I would keep doing exactly what I’m doing right now; I believe that this job I have created for myself is perhaps the coolest.

The contemporary art world can be a tricky one. Sometimes it can feel like you are working for something that has no meaning and is quite superficial (this is from a chat with another contemporary art super-villain friend of mine, who is in an existential crisis right now). For me, this feeling disappears when I met people like Elizabeth Pisani, who are of course not about contemporary art, but about the taste for adventure, learning, knowledge.

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montella

EN: Il Ramo D’Oro is a special place in Naples for artistic reflection which is truly grassroots, and for the gathering of an international art community. Upon request of Il Ramo D’Oro’s director, Vincenzo Montella, I have written an essay called “Flow and rigidity in challenging the borders” reflecting on the experience of the series of international shows Oltreconfine. This included Attualità Indonesiane which I co-curated.

The Oltreconfine book – where you can find my essay alongside the ones of authors such as Made Bayak e Judicael Ouango – is now available on Amazon.

Here the English version: Beyond-Borders: Art and Resilience in the Internet Era

ITA: Il Ramo D’Oro è un posto unico a Napoli dove sviluppare riflessioni artistiche genuine e dove coltivare una comunità artistica internazionale. Su richiesta del fondatore del Ramo D’Oro, Vincenzo Montella, ho scritto un breve saggio chiamato “Fludità e rigidità nel mettere in discussione i confini”, il quale riflette sull’esperienza della rassegna internazionale Oltreconfine. Questa ha incluso Attualità Indonesiane che ho co-curato.

Il libro di Oltreconfine, nel quale si trova il mio saggio insieme a quello di altri autori, tra cui Made Bayak e Judicael Ouango, è ora disponibile su Amazon.

Ecco la versione italiana: Oltreconfine: Arte e resilienza nell’era di internet

Qui sotto un estratto dal mio testo:

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artapartcatilina

Catilina has been my most beloved historical figure of all times since the time of the Liceo. On the other hand the Roman webmagazine Art to part of Culture has always been the place where I felt more at home writing-wise, encouraged to express myself both in terms of ideas and style. The two came together for a review of the play Catilina at Teatro Orione.

Here is the link to the article

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lasluccio

Italian webmagazine Art a Part of Culture has just published an article on Laslo Iera’s open studio, with the title “Surrealism on the Prenestina” (that’s the street of Rome where Laslo’s studio is located).

When you write about your dear redhead friend, you must force yourself to step back from a work that you saw in its evolution, and look at things more objectively. My strategy in arts writing is going personal with artists you don’t know, and being more detached with artists you know way to well.

I feel it balances things; with my articles I want to give information about the work but also give an peek into the personality of artists, and what brought them to realize a certain work. Laslo’s ideas are powerful and his aesthetic is polarizing: you either love it or hate it – just like the artists who created it.

Here’s the link to the article

 

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BrestSurrentum2
Among the art pieces I write each month, every now and then I churn out a funny one. This time the Sorrento local magazine Sorrentum was looking for a short write-up about the participation of the miniature sail boat Stella Maris and its team of two to the annual maritime festival of the French city of Brest (the same one of Jean Genet’s “Querelle de Brest”). Half of the team was Capitain Giancarlo Antonetti – a super-chatty sea dog and certifiable nuts – and the other was my brother, who is by far the sternest and most taciturn person I have ever met.

In the article I imagined the two-days long car trip of the two from Italy to France. You can read the piece on the August issue of Sorrentum or, more straightforwardly, below. It is in Italian, but the title can translate as “Fear and Loathing in Brest”

Paura e Delirio a Brest

Prendete un pizzico di Hunter Thompson e frullatelo con una manciata di Jean Genet, e avrete la nostra rappresentanza sorrentina al Festival Internazionale Marittimo di Brest, in Francia. Questo evento tanto atteso dagli amanti della vela accoglie ad ogni sua edizione migliaia di imbarcazioni da tutto il mondo ed è volto far conoscere ai visitatori le diverse culture marittime.

A tenere alta la bandiera sorrentina, anzi, la vela a tarchia, è il comandante Giancarlo Antonetti, l’esuberante fondatore dell’associazione velistica che da sempre si fa promotore di questa antica tradizione in penisola, affiancato in veste straordinaria dal compassato Leandro Morelli, un nome che solo di recente comincia a risuonare nell’ambito nautico, ma che già è noto in alcuni circoli ginnici sorrentini per far sospirare più di una donzella.

Ed ora immaginate questo improbabile duo, il vivace e chiacchierone Giancarlo strizzato in una striminzita minicooper color petrolio con il laconico Leandro, un duo lanciato sotto l’infinita tratta del traforo del Monte Bianco con una piccola feluca pericolosamente legata sul tetto, ed ecco, avrete davanti a voi il girone che Dante aveva lasciato fuori dall’Inferno per premura.

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gooddeeds2
The warm spring sun has not only been responsible for flushing us TeenPress reporters out of our den in Pietralata. It has also compelled us to engage in the “good deeds” dear to Collodi. My colleague Andrea and I have been sent by our Charlie to the “Good Deeds Day”, an international event which in Rome took place in the Circo Massimo.

Leaving our usual cynicism at home, we tried to understand what was about this day that would remind us to be better people. What we found is that this gathering was an opportunity for associations and organizations to meet and let citizens know of their relentless commitment to the “good”.

Likewise, individuals engaged in ideals could come together. We found out that the idea of what “good” looked like was different for everyone. What was shared though was a great energy – whether it was strawberry-clad evangelical or a Mexican wise woman fighting for an alternative version of their flag, everybody was in high spirits. Enjoy the video!

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matisse1
We are back with a new report from the Palazzo delle Esposizioni in Rome, where we followed a workshop for children inspired  by the exhibition “Il Giardino di Matisse”, currently on in the Museum. This show displays the original art from the namesake book by writer Samantha Friedman and Italian illustrator Cristina Amodeo, who reinterpreted the work by Henri Matisse.

The book was created for the exhibition “Henri Matisse: The Cut Outs” at MoMA. This was part of a new project by the NY museum, consisting in publishing a book for every large show linked to its collection, and a collaboration with several houses national and international publishing houses. For Italy it’s Fatatrac.

The osmotic process ended up in this workshop at Palazzo delle Esposizioni, where children were trying their hand at the collage, helped by their parents. The workshop was in fact aimed at family – so that art can become a way to spend quality time together. Enjoy the video! (in Italian)

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interviewdeianira
Arts writer and curator Deianira Tolema – the gal behind Zero Hype Mag – has interviewed me for Art a Part of Cult(ure). She is the best interviewer I could hope for, a talented, committed writer and a kindred spirit in the journey in the contemporary art world – she goes west whereas I go east. In the piece (in Italian) called “Indonesian interferences with a Singaporean aftertaste. Interview to Naima Morelli”,  we talk about my start as a writer, my research in Indonesia, Australia and Singapore, and about my book Arte Contemporanea in Indonesia, un’introduzione

Here’s the link to the interview 

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giorgia
Here’s the second installment of TeenPress’ series “Giovani Creativi”, dedicated to the emerging talents of the Roman arts and culture scene. This time we are a bit outside my comfort zone, as we are exploring theater.  Actress Giorgia Ferrara is born-and-bred Sicilian who moved to Rome in order to pursue her acting career. In this interview where we talk about her beginnings in the theater scene and the role art plays in her life.

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technotown
Who would ever expect to find a technology  wonderland right in the heart of the Villa Torlonia, Rome? Learning through play is the motto of Technotown, a building dedicated to children and teenagers to experiment with technology, nature and creativity.

Technotown consists in nine rooms equipped with different technologies, from Lego Mindstorms to the first plant ever to have a twitter profile. In this place children are no longer approaching technology in a mindless and lazy way. They are rather using it to imagine a sustainable future and developing new ideas.

I visited the place for a video report for the news agency Teenpress, guided by Technotown’s manager  Gabriele Catanzaro. It has been a blast of energy and excitement. Technotown is the sort of place which reinforces my hopes for a better future. In their own little world, Technotown is forging a new generation of lateral thinkers and innovators. It’s a thing of beauty! And now for the video…

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quagliozzi
I have to admit the video reports with the TeenPress guys was something I was missing from my life. We are finally back with a new micro-series with the self-explanatory name “Giovani Creativi”. For these installments creatives of  all stripes join us in our studio in Pietralata, Rome. We chat about their artistic practice, creative process, everyday life and day-to-day struggles. We have started with Cristiano Quagliozzi, painter, sculptor, installation and performance artist, who opens up about his upcoming project and gives us his definition of artist. Enjoy the video!

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