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· The Novel ·

"We play and chase after each other, Artemisia and I. And to stop us, there may be traps, from the most material and uncovered to the most hidden". It was in 1947 when the Italian writer Anna Banti published her second novel, Artemisia, which tells the story of the Italian painter who lived in the first half the seventeenth century. Written as a mixture of truth and fantasy using archival documents, and above all the paintings of Artemisia Gentileschi, the novel is a striking dialogue between two women far apart yet united by art, and by the difficulty of succeeding in a male world. The classical poetic and tormented prose, of Anna Banti after World War II, meets the vibrant painful and courageous painting of Artemisia Gentileschi from the seventeenth century: the reader herself spellbound between two women and two centuries that, although different, are intertwined. Banti takes it upon herself to give life and voice to that woman, who, overcoming the hostility of her time while also suffering a humiliating trial for rape (those in which the victim ends up being found guilty), is still able to enter into the history of art. A biography capable of being an autobiography. That says a lot about art and about women.




St. Peter’s Square

Dec. 10, 2019