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ITALY: Luisa Del Giudice Talk on Watts Towers at the Universita’ Ca’ Foscari in Venice

Date:
May 2-16, 2016
Location:
Universita’ Ca’ Foscari in Venice
Venice, Italy
ITALY: Luisa Del Giudice Talk on Watts Towers at the Universita’ Ca’ Foscari in Venice
More Information:

Luisa Del Giudice, author of Sabato Rodia’s Towers in Watts: Art, Migrations, Development (2014) will give a lecture at Lab DEA: 



May 2, 2016 | Lunedì 2 maggio 2016

ore 14.30-16.30

Palazzo Marcorà Malcanton, II piano, Sala grande

Dipartimento di Studi Umanistici

Universita’ Ca’ Foscari in Venice

 

DETAILS

In this presentation Dr. Del Giudice will discuss her edited volume Sabato Rodia’s Towers in Watts: Art, Migrations, Development (NY: Fordham University Press, 2014), a tour de force culmination of the last five years of activity around the extraordinary Watts Towers, a National Historic Monument, created over the course of 3 decades by a visionary artist, Italian immigrant laborer, Sam, Simon (born Sabato) Rodia, who wanted to “do something big.” Through international conferences (Università di Genova, 2009; UCLA and Watts, 2010), and the Watts Towers Common Ground Initiative, scholars, artists, civic authorities, conservators, and others, explored the monument’s multiple resonances within local and global migrations, contested social and urban spaces, and the relationship between art and economic development. These new voices, as well as Rodia’s own words (transcribed from sound recordings at UCLA Research Library’s Special Collections for the first time), return to the mysteries that remain around the man and his artwork: What are they? Why did he build them? Why is a new generation rallying around this icon?

 

About the speaker: 

Luisa Del Giudice is an Independent Scholar, former university academic (University of California Los Angeles, Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia), public sector educator (Founder-Director of the Italian Oral History Institute), and community activist. She has published and lectured widely on Italian and Italian American and Canadian folklife, ethnology, oral history, and has produced many innovative public programs on Italian, Mediterranean regional and folk culture, and local history in Los Angeles. In 2008 she was named an honorary Fellow of the American Folklore Society and knighted by the Italian Republic. She is the coordinator of the Watts Towers Common Ground Initiative.

 

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ABSTRACT

Sabato (Sam, Simon) Rodia, dal 1921-54 costruisce a Watts (quartiere di Los Angeles), come lui stesso dice: “qualcosa di grande,” “qualcosa di mai visto al mondo.” Al complesso monumentale acui diede titolo “Nuestro Pueblo”, che verrà conosciuto poi come le “Watts Towers,” lavora da solo con materiali trovati per strada. Poi Rodia scompare. Quando si “scoprono” le Torri—maanche l’ordine per la loro demolizione come pericolo pubblico—si mette in moto una campagna internazionale per la loro salvaguardia. Cosa sono, perchè le costruì, come e perchèsalvaguardarle oggi? Vengono esplorate le risonanze multiple di questa costruzione visionaria,tra cartografie locali e migrazioni globali, tra socialità e spazi urbani, tra arte e sviluppoeconomico, nel contesto della storia culturale italo-americana. Infine si presenterà la candidatura delle Watts Towers all’UNESCO come Patrimonio dell’umanità.

 

Nota Biografica:

Women Reflect on Profession, Community, Purpose, ed.Luisa Del Giudice, è un ricercatore indipendente, in passato ha fatto parte dell’Università della California a Los Angeles UCLA ed è stata fondatore e direttore dell’Italian oral History Institute. Pubblicazioni principali: Studies in Italian American Folklore, ed. Cecilia: Testi e contesti di un canto narrativo tradizionale; Imagined States: Nationalism, Utopia, and Longing in Oral Cultures, ed. con Gerald Porter; Performing Ecstasies: Music, Dance, and Ritual in the Mediterranean, ed. con Nancy van Deusen; Oral History, Oral Culture and Italian Americans, ed. Sabato Rodia’s Towers in Watts: Art, Migrations, Development, ed.; On Second Thought: Scholarly

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