Persisting Matters: An Artist Talk Series – Sheila Pepe in conversation with Lex Lancaster


November 07, 2023, 6:00 PM

General Admission: FREE


Join us for the first in a series of encounters and conversations with contemporary artists, starting with Sheila Pepe and Lex Lancaster.

Persisting Matters is a series of talks that places contemporary artists in conversation with scholars, curators, critics, and the public. The series is developed in the context of CIMA’s 2023-2024 exhibition, Transatlantic Bridges: Corrado Cagli, 1938-1948, and supported by a grant from The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. Cagli saw his artistic practice as a tool for anti-rhetorical resistance and critique to power in times of exile, displacement and trauma. Questions of gender, racism, political oppression and resilience through art and community practices were central to his work in the years of his exile from Italy, due to the country’s racial laws. Persisting Matters engages contemporary artists, whose practices explore these pressing subjects in their individual context and prism.

About Sheila Pepe:

Sheila Pepe is best known for crocheting her large-scale, ephemeral installations and sculpture made from domestic and industrial materials. However, the exhibition Sheila Pepe: Hot Mess Formalism, curated by Gilbert Vicario for the Phoenix Museum of Art, and the catalog published with it, showed us that Pepe has built a more expansive and complex way of working since her start in the mid-1980s.

For more than 30 years she has accumulated a family resemblance (see Wittgenstein, Philosophical Investigations) of works in sculpture—installation—drawing and other singular and hybrid forms. Some are drawings that are sculpture—or sculpture that is furniture, fiber works that appear as paintings, and tabletop objects that look like models for monuments, and stand as votives for a secular religion. The cultural sources and the meanings twisted together are from canonical arts of the 20th century, home crafts, lesbian, queer and feminist aesthetics, 2nd Vatican Council American design, an array of Roman Catholic sources as well as their ancient precedents.

The constant conceptual pursuit of Pepe’s research, making, teaching and writing has been to contest received knowledge, opinions and taste.

Pepe’s My Neighbor’s Garden, commissioned by the Madison Square Park Conservancy, will be on view through December 10th. Related press and other links can be found at

About Lex Morgan Lancaster:

Lex Morgan Lancaster (they/them) is a scholar and curator who focuses on queer, trans, anti-racist, and crip contributions to the field of contemporary art. The author of Dragging Away: Queer Abstraction in Contemporary Art (Duke University Press, 2022), Lancaster’s scholarship focuses on queer and trans approaches to abstraction and the politics of formal and material strategies in contemporary art. Lancaster is Assistant Professor of Art History at The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art.

This series is developed through a grant from The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts.

Light refreshments will be provided!


“Young Professionals in the Arts” Night at CIMA


November 03, 2023, 5:30 PM - 7:30 PM

General Admission: FREE


The Soho Arts Network presents a special FREE night of Italian art and light refreshments at CIMA.

This evening event is open to all graduate students, research fellows, young professionals* and interns in the art and art history world from the New York area.

Come join us for a guided tour of CIMA’s current exhibition Transatlantic Bridges: Corrado Cagli, 1938-1948 and meet like-minded art lovers from all across the city.

5:30 – 6:00 pm: Refreshments, conversation and music.

6:00pm: Guided tour of CIMA’s exhibition, Transatlantic Bridges: Corrado Cagli, 1938-1948

Light refreshments will be provided

*under the age of 35

Public programming at CIMA is made possible with the generous support of Tiro a Segno Foundation.


Curzio Malaparte and the Visual Arts


October 19 - 20, 2023

Photo by Petra Liebl-Osborne

General admission: Free


International Conference

Istituto Italiano di Cultura di New York; Center for Italian Modern Art; Casa Italiana Zerilli-Marimò – NYU

October 19-20, 2023

Italian author Curzio Malaparte (1898-1957) has been celebrated and ostracized worldwide for his controversial politics and for the impressive success of novels such as Kaputt (1944) and The Skin (1949). In his writings, Malaparte witnesses the fall of Europe during WWII by illuminating the racialized, gendered and biopolitical aspects of modern political power, even beyond fascism. At the same time, his name is indelibly associated with Casa Malaparte (1938-40, revised until 1950), the outstanding modernist mansion perched atop a solitary rock in Capri, which the author himself designed in collaboration with rationalist architect Adalberto Libera. A fabled subject and setting for countless photographers and filmmakers, Casa Malaparte has become a paradigm of luxurious minimalism and an international icon of Italian style, famously portrayed in Jean-Luc Godard’s film Contempt.

Malaparte’s unique interpretation of arts, architecture, and landscape in his visionary writing and beyond—from Casa Malaparte, to the piercing photographs he shot as a war correspondent in Ethiopia, the Balkans and Ukraine, to his anti-picturesque film The Forbidden Christ (1951)—are at the center of “Curzio Malaparte and the Visual Arts.” The conference will continue the tradition of the CIMA’s Study Days and the collaboration with the Italian Cultural Institute of New York and NYU’s Casa Italiana Zerilli-Marimò.

FRANCO BALDASSO, Bard College, New York

Advisory Committee
STEFANO ALBERTINI, Casa Italiana Zerilli Marimò – NYU
FRANCO BALDASSO, Bard College, New York
MARIA PIA DE PAULIS, Sorbonne Nouvelle-Paris III
FABIO FINOTTI, Istituto Italiano di Cultura, New York
NICOLA LUCCHI, Center for Italian Modern Art, New York



DAY 1 (October 19) ISTITUTO ITALIANO DI CULTURA – New York  (686 Park Avenue, NYC)

9:30 AM – Doors open

10:00 AM – Welcome Remarks by IIC Director Fabio Finotti
Introduction to the Conference by Franco Baldasso (Bard College)

10:30 AM – PANEL 1: Right before your Eyes: Malaparte’s Visual Poetics
Chair: Emmanuel Mattiato

Maria Pia De Paulis (Université Sorbonne Nouvelle-Paris III)
Ut pictura Historia. La rivolta dei santi maledetti o della visività tra storia, testimonianza e poesia
Diego Pellizzari (Université Grenoble Alps)
Il re è nudo. Il ritratto di Himmler in Kaputt di Curzio Malaparte
Cécile Mitéran (Université Sorbonne Nouvelle-Paris III)
Marmo e sangue: le statue ambigue di Malaparte.
Chiara Zampieri (Katholieke Universiteit Leuven)
Oggetti crudeli: Malaparte e la cultura materiale

1:00 PM – Lunch break

3:00 PM – PANEL 2: Encounters: Malaparte among Arts and Artists
Chair: Maria Pia De Paulis

Emmanuel Mattiato (Université Savoie Mont Blanc)
Malaparte e Prospettive: la rivista come specchio estetico di una stagione fiorente
Colin Marston (UCLA)
The Obscenity of the Unreliable Narrator: Visualization and an Aesthetic of Shock in Malaparte’s War Prose
Francesca Golia (Université Sorbonne Nouvelle/DFK Paris)
La Crocifissione di Lorenzetti. Per una lettura teologico-politica di un’ekphrasis malapartiana

5:00 PM – ROUND TABLE: Translating Malaparte into English
Moderator: Franco Baldasso (Bard College)

Stephen Twilley, translator
Jenny McPhee, translator, NYU
Edwin Frank, editor, NYRB Classics


DAY 2 (October 20): CENTER FOR ITALIAN MODERN ART (421 Broome Street, 4th Fl., NYC)

9:00 AM Doors open

9:30AM – Welcome Remarks by CIMA Director Nicola Lucchi

9:45 AM – PANEL 1: A House Like Me: Casa Malaparte in Capri
Chair: Davide Spagnoletto (CIMA Fellow)

Michelangelo Sabatino (Illinois Institute of Technology)
Casa Malaparte and the Landscape of Vernacular in Italy
Jean Francois Lejeune (University of Miami, Florida)
Case come me: Malaparte’s and Pasolini’s Islands
Davide Spina (ETH Zurich)
Unfit for Modernity

11:15 AM – Coffee Break

11:30 AM – PANEL 2: Casa Malaparte and the Arts: Design, Photography, and Architecture
Chair: Filippo Bosco (CIMA Fellow)

Petra Liebl-Osborne (University of Miami, Florida)
Artists at Casa Malaparte
Alessandro Melis (New York Institute of Technology)
Determinismo e non-determinismo in architettura: l’esempio di Casa Malaparte
Simone Sfriso (TAM Associati)
Casa Malaparte’s Legacy in Contemporary Architecture
Cherubino Gambardella (Università della Campania)
The Impossible Malapartes: One House, One Thousand Architectures

1:30 PM Lunch break


DAY 2 (October 20): CASA ITALIANA ZERILLI MARIMO’ – NYU (24 W. 12th St., NYC)

5:00 PM – Welcome Remarks by Casa Italiana Zerilli-Marimò’s Director Stefano Albertini
PANEL 3: The Archivio Malaparte at Biblioteca di Via Senato in Milan: Sources for the Study of Malaparte’s Cinema and Visual Culture
Chair: Franco Baldasso

Carla Maria Giacobbe (Biblioteca di Via Senato, Milan)
Malaparte and Cinema: Drafts and Projects from the Author’s Archive
Federico Oneta (Biblioteca di Via Senato, Milan)
Archivio Malaparte: A “Visual” Panorama

6:00 PM – Introduction to Curzio Malaparte, The Forbidden Christ (Il Cristo proibito, 1951):      Jeffrey Schnapp (Harvard University)

6:30 PM – Screening of The Forbidden Christ


Organized by:



In collaboration with:






Corrado Cagli: Opening Lecture by Curator Raffaele Bedarida


October 17, 2023, 6:00 PM

General admission: $15; Member & Students: FREE


Join curator Raffaele Bederida who will present CIMA’s new exhibition Transatlantic Bridges: Corrado Cagli, 1938-1948, and will analyze some of the key works exhibited in the show. 

During the 1930s, Cagli was active as a painter working on public projects commissioned by the Italian fascist regime, including the 1937 Paris Expo, for which his paintings were part of an official government-sanctioned pavilion. It was only after 1937 that Cagli faced the full force of the regime as the number of critics and fascist party intellectuals attacking his work and persona grew.
As a Jewish and openly gay artist, starting in 1937, Cagli became the target of antisemitic attacks from reactionary critics within the fascist regime. As Italy promulgated its racial laws in 1938, Cagli left the country for the United States, where he became a protagonist of the New York émigré artistic scene.

Besides addressing the themes of war, exile, and discrimination, Raffaele will illustrate how the works in the exhibition also relate to Cagli’s multifaceted engagement with the New York Surrealist and Neo-romantic milieu, as well as his collaboration with George Balanchine and the Ballet Society.

Light refreshments will be provided!

About the curator: Raffaele Bedarida, PhD. Dr. Bedarida, associate professor of Art History at Cooper Union, is an art historian and curator specializing in transnational modernism and politics. Since he joined The Cooper Union full-time faculty in 2016, he has coordinated the History and Theory of Art program. Bedarida holds a Ph.D. from the Art History Department of the CUNY Graduate Center, New York as well as M.A. and B.A. degrees in Art History from the Università degli Studi di Siena, Italy. His research has focused on cultural diplomacy, migration, and exchange between Italy and the United States. He has also worked on exhibition history, censorship, and propaganda under Fascism and during the Cold War, from Futurism to Arte Povera. Since 2008, when he founded and curated the residency program Harlem Studio Fellowship in New York, Bedarida has actively promoted programs of international exchange for emerging artists. In addition to his academic and curatorial activities, Bedarida has regularly lectured on modern and contemporary art topics at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and MoMA. Bedarida has authored three monographs: Bepi Romagnoni: Il Nuovo Racconto (Milan: Silvana, 2005); Corrado Cagli: la pittura, l’esilio, l’America (Rome: Donzelli, 2018; English edition: CPL Editions, in press); Exhibiting Italian Art in the US. Futurism to Arte Povera (London-New York: Routledge, 2022). He has also edited many volumes, among which: Methodologies of Exchange: Twentieth Century Italian Art at MoMA, 1949, with Davide Colombo and Silvia Bignami, special issue of Italian Modern Art, January 2020; Gianfranco Baruchello: Painters Ain’t Butterflies (Macerata: Quodlibet, 2021); Curating Fascism: Exhibitions and Memory from the Fall of Mussolini to Today, with Sharon Hecker (London-New York: Bloomsbury, 2022). His academic articles and essays have been published extensively in periodicals, such as Oxford Art Journal, International Yearbook of Futurism Studies, Italian Modern Art, and Artforum, and in exhibition catalogues. Bedarida’s upcoming publications is: Author, Corrado Cagli: Exile, Painting, America 1938-1947, monograph (New York: Primo Levi Center Editions, in press).


Public programming at CIMA is made possible with the generous support of Tiro a Segno Foundation


Members Opening Reception: “Transatlantic Bridges: Corrado Cagli, 1938 – 1948”


October 12, 2023, 6:00 PM

CIMA Members at any level are invited to join us for the opening reception of our new exhibition, Transatlantic Bridges: Corrado Cagli, 1938-1948.

This will be an opportunity to view the exhibition before it opens to the public, and to meet curator Raffaele Bedarida.

Light refreshments will be provided.


Please RSVP to


Live Music & Aperitivo at CIMA with Chiara Izzi


June 09, 2023, 6:30 PM

General admission: $30; Members: $20; Students: $15


Join us at CIMA for the last edition of the ‘Special Event & Aperitivo‘ series (more to come in the fall). We will celebrate the closing of our current exhibition, From Depero to Rotella: Italian Commercial Posters Between Advertising and Art, with a live concert. Jazz singer, songwriter and composer Chiara Izzi will delight us with a special jazz medley of popular Italian music from the 1930s to the 1950s, the years of our poster exhibition.

Meet in the CIMA kitchen after the concert for cocktails and light bites!

Chiara Izzi is an award-winning jazz singer and composer from Italy based in New York City since 2014, three years after Quincy Jones awarded her first prize in the 2011 Montreux Jazz Festival Vocal Competition. In 2020 she also won one Independent Music Award for Best Jazz song with Vocals with her composition “Circles Of The Mind”. She perfectly blends traditional Italian music with jazz, Mediterreanean and pop sounds to create a dynamic and heartwarming show, singing and telling stories in four languages (Italian, English, Portuguese and Spanish). Her latest releases include Live In Bremen (Dot Time Records/2022) which embodies a classical richness enhanced by Izzi’s stylistic method of blending her lyrics and languages, and Across The Sea (Jando/2019), a cooperative project with pianist Kevin Hays. Chiara has performed in prominent New York venues such as Iridium, Birdland, The Blue Note, The Kennedy Center, Smalls, 55 Bar, sharing bandstands with such luminaries as Kevin Hays, Leon Parker, Diego Figueiredo, Jeff Hamilton, Aaron Goldberg, Bruce Barth, Eliot Zigmund, Warren Wolf, etc.

Cocktails courtesy of CAMPARI GROUP. Must be 21+. Please drink responsibly.


SYRMA: Theater & Aperitivo at CIMA


May 20, 2023, 2:30 PM

General admission: $30; Members: $20; Students: $15


Join us at CIMA for the second edition of the ‘Special Event & Aperitivo‘ series. This time we present a reading of the dystopian drama SYRMA, written by award winning actress and writer Carolina de’ Castiglioni (The Cumbersome Guest, Getting a Scholarship, FOUND).

Running time of the reading: 65 minutes

Meet us in the CIMA kitchen after the reading for an uplifting cocktail!

SYRMA was presented in 2019 at the Alchemical Theater by Union Square (NYC) and was selected as part of the New York Theater Festival. Since then, the play has been extensively developed into the final version the audience will be able to see on May 20th.

SYRMA SYNOPSIS. In the world of Syrma, free will does not exist. In its place are three all-powerful women, The Moire, who determine the life course of each individual. They control these lives with their magical strings, which can be spun (or severed) at whim. But when a mysterious golden string is created, its human counterpart gains a unique ability to choose her own path. Syrma explores the burden of free will and the cost of following one’s dreams.

The cast includes Carolina in the lead role, Sofía Figueroa (Wounded, Encanto Immersive Show), Agathe Westad (Phèdre/Phaedra), Christina Goursky (Beauty Queen), Emerson Reed (Peter/Wendy, Pride and Prejudice), Seeni Chandran (A Few Good Men) and Bella Kouds (Our Song, Hamlet). The reading is directed by Lizzy Fruehling (Constellations, Mere Exposure).

Carolina de’ Castiglioni is an award winning Italian actress. An NYU Tisch Alumna, she received several Best Actress awards for her works. She has performed at The Cell Theater, The Cabaret Theater, Teatro Litta in Milan amongst others. Her work has been praised by BroadwayWorld, ELLE, Vanity Fair, Corriere della Sera, La Stampa, La Repubblica, amongst others. She lives between New York and Milan.

Lizzy Fruehling is a Brooklyn-based director and writer. She studied theater at NYU Tisch’s Meisner Studio and film at Stonestreet Studios. Recent projects include Mere Exposure at The Brick Theater (writer, dir.), Constellations at Playwrights Downtown (dir.), and Earth and Sky at NYU Tisch (assistant dir.).


Cocktails courtesy of CAMPARI GROUP. Light refreshments will accompany the cocktail.

Must be 21+. Please drink responsibly.


‘On Salvo/De Salvo’: Presenting a New Monograph


May 18, 2023, 6:00 PM

General admission: $10; Members & Students: Free


Join us at CIMA as we present IO SONO SALVO: Works and Writings 1961-2015 (NERO Editions, 2023), a new monograph dedicated to artist Salvo (1947-2015). The monograph is conceived as a self-portrait: a story of the artist’s practice through his works and words. A collection of writings, including the treatise On Painting, unpublished texts, and various interviews given over the years, complement a vast selection of his works, presented in chronological sequence.

Bob Nickas, author of one of the two critical essays published in the volume, will be in conversation with CIMA Fellow Giorgio Di Domenico, with the participation of CIMA Executive Director, Nicola Lucchi.

Born in Leonforte, in Sicily, Salvo moves to Turin in 1956, where he starts carrying out a conceptual research, first akin to that of Arte Povera and of artists such as Sol LeWitt, Robert Barry and Joseph Kosuth, with whom he comes into contact. 1973 was the year of his “return to painting”, a language he had practiced in the very first years of his training and that, at the beginning of the 1970s, was to be considered unconventional.
Salvo does not conceive painting in contrast to the language of conceptual art, and through a fifty-year career, he is able to carry on a personal research, in constant dialogue with the past.


Light refreshments will be served


This project is supported by the Italian Council (10th edition, 2021), a program to promote Italian contemporary art in the world by the Directorate-General for Contemporary Creativity of the Italian Ministry of Culture.

Bob Nickas is a writer and curator based in New York. He has organized over 120 exhibitions since 1984. As Curatorial Advisor at MoMA/PS1, between 2004-07, he mounted monographic exhibitions for Lee Lozano, Stephen Shore, and Wolfgang Tillmans, as well as projects with Trisha Donnelly and Torbjørn Rødland. He served on the teams for the 2003 Biennale de Lyon and Greater New York 2005 at MoMA/PS1, contributed a section to Aperto at the 1993 Venice Biennale, and collaborated with Cady Noland on her Documenta IX project in 1992. He was founding editor of Index magazine. His books include Painting Abstraction: New Elements In Abstract Painting, and four collections of writing and interviews: Theft Is Vision, Live Free or Die, The Dept. of Corrections, and Komplaint Dept. He is one of the authors of Defining Contemporary Art: 25 Years In 200 Pivotal Artworks, No Problem: Cologne/New York 1984-1989, and Brand New: Art & Commodity in the 1980s. Most recently he has published essays in books on Vija Celmins, Robert Grosvenor, Steven Parrino, Josh Smith and Salvo.



Italian Posters Study Day


May 05, 2023, 10:00 AM - 06:30 PM

General admission: $15. Members and Students: Free


Keynote speaker: Prof. Luca Cottini (Villanova University)

The exhibition From Depero to Rotella: Italian Commercial Posters Between Advertising and Art, curated by Nicola Lucchi and on view in New York at the Center for Italian Modern Art (CIMA) through June 10, 2023, examines the cross-pollination between avant-garde art and commercial posters in Italy, with a particular focus on the interwar years and the early post-World War II era, during the country’s economic boom.

With this Italian Posters Study Day, CIMA’s Research Fellows join prominent scholars from diverse fields—including History of Art and Architecture, Graphic Design and Italian Studies—to investigate the themes at the center of the exhibition within and outside of established critical frameworks.

The conference will take place in person at the Center for Italian Modern Art. Besides the keynote address and three scholarly panels, a group of scholars, designers and design historians will also gather for a special roundtable session to discuss the art of Italian posters and their relations to the different art movements of the interwar and postwar years, the corresponding social milieux, as well as the connection to disciplines ranging from art and architecture to graphic design and fashion.


Conference Program

10AM: Coffee and registration

Light breakfast will be served

Conference registration and viewing of the exhibition From Depero to Rotella: Italian Commercial Posters Between Advertising and Art, curated by Nicola Lucchi.


10:30AM: Panel 1 – FORM

Duccio Nobili (Bibliotheca Hertziana, Rome, IT): “Some Shades of Red: Albe Steiner and the Legacy of Constructivism”

Giorgio Di Domenico (CIMA Research Fellow): “Dream Objects: Surrealism and Italian Advertising Art” 

Jonathan Wajskol (Parsons School of Design): “A G Fronzoni: a Minimalist and a Noncommercial Designer”

Followed by discussion and Q&A


12:00-1:30PM: Panel 2 — DEBATES

Greg D’Onofrio (Cooper Union; School of Visual Arts): “The Evolution of Italian Poster Design: 1960-1975”

Michele Galluzzo (University of Bolzano, IT): “What Surrounds These Posters? Mimmo Rotella’s Décollages and the Italian Advertising Landscape Between the 1960s and 1970s”

Margaret Scarborough (Columbia University): “Oil and Intellectuals: Pasolini Against Advertising”

Followed by discussion and Q&A

1:30- 3:00PM: Lunch Break

Light lunch will be served


3:00-4:30PM: Panel 3: FUNCTION

Marcella Martin (CIMA Research Fellow): “The Fashion of Advertising: Reference and the Limits of Repetition”

Virginia Spadaccini (University of Chieti, IT): “The Roman Factor: Notes on Fashion Illustration and Advertising 1955-60″

Wanda Strauven (Columbia University): “Between Posters and Screens, Advertising and Building-Wrapping” 

Followed by discussion and Q&A


4:30-5:30pm: Roundtable discussion

Moderator: Angelina Lippert (Poster House)

Discussants: Gwenda-lin Grewal (New School of Social Research), Andrea Trabucco-Campos (Graphic and Type Designer, Creative Director at Gretel), Emiliano Ponzi (Visual Artist and Illustrator)


5:30PM Keynote address

Luca Cottini (Villanova University): “The Birth of National Industry and the Crisis of Advertising. The Italian 1930s Through the Eyes of Marcello Dudovich”

Followed by Q&A


The Italian Posters Study Day at CIMA is made possible with the generous support of Swann Auction Galleries.


Only Mozart is Missing (Manca Solo Mozart): a theater performance at CIMA


May 03, 2023, 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM

General admission: Free


This event is part of
In Scena! Italian Theater Festival NY 2023

(Manca solo Mozart)

Based on a true story by Marco Simeoli’s grandfather
Written & Directed by Antonio Grosso
Performed by Marco Simeoli
Set Design by Alessandro Chiti
Costume Design by Marco Maria Della Vecchia
Assistant Director: Andrea Vellotti
Photographer: Francesco Nannarelli
Presented by Altra Scena and Viola Produzioni

Marco Simeoli brings to the stage, with words and music, the many stories from his grandfather, founder of the most important, and still open, music store in Naples: Musica Simeoli. Memories of the Belle Époque, the Second World War, the economic boom of the Sixties and the great illusion of the Eighties come alive together with the many famous clients of Musica Simeoli, such as Totò, Roberto Murolo, Renato Carosone, Riccardo Muti, Pino Daniele and Massimo Troisi.

Running Time: 75 min.

Light refreshments will be served


About In Scena! Italian Theater Festival NY
In 2013 Kairos Italy Theater, the preeminent Italian theater company in New York City, together with the Italian KIT Italia, created In Scena! Italian Theater Festival NY, the first Italian theater festival to take place in all five New York City boroughs and beyond. The festival’s first edition was part of the 2013 Year of Italian Culture in the United States and it was supported by the Embassy of Italy in DC and Casa Italiana Zerilli-Marimò at NYU that, soon after, became one of the organizers. The festival has since become an annual event.