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Writer Nicola Lagioia to be spotlighted by eighth edition of L’immagine e la parola


The eighth edition of the Locarno Film Festival’s springtime event L’immagine e la parola will begin on 27 March. The focus for its regular interdisciplinary look at film and literature will be the Italian writer Nicola Lagioia, winner of the Strega Prize in 2015 for his novel La ferocia (Ferocity) and director of the Turin International Book Fair. The event will be held online, hosted on the Festival website. L’immagine e la parola will also provide the occasion for the official presentation of the Locarno74 Retrospective, dedicated to Alberto Lattuada.

The return of spring brings back the customary seasonal event L’immagine e la parola, now in its eighth edition after an enforced break in 2020. This year sees the introduction of an online format, allowing for further analysis and investigation of the relations between cinema and literature. Center stage will be taken by a high-profile figure in Italian culture, Nicola Lagioia, one of the country’s leading novelists and a longstanding source of inspiration as both a writer and a cultural operator.

On Saturday 27 March at 4 pm Lagioia, currently Director of the Turin International Book Fair, will join with Locarno Film Festival Artistic Director Giona A. Nazzaro in a panel discussion held at the GranRex theater in Locarno. Their conversation will be titled “La città dei vivi. Rethinking creative practice and cultural programming” and for the public it will be streamed live on the Festival website. With representatives of two of Europe’s leading cultural institutions contributing, the discussion will reflect on the role of art and its promotion at this critical juncture in our history, on possible reset strategies post-Covid, and on holding major events in the time of a pandemic.

The presence of guest Nicola Lagioia, whose recent acclaimed non-fiction novel La città dei vivi reconstructs the 2016 murder in Rome of 23-year-old Luca Varani, charting the role of the media in the narrative of the killing, will also be the cue for the official presentation of the Retrospective of the 74th edition of the Locarno Film Festival, dedicated to Alberto Lattuada. The title picked out for the occasion from the director’s long and varied filmography will be La spiaggia (The Boarder, 1954), itself inspired by real events and, like Lagioia’s true crime novel, based on careful analysis of the societal dynamics of the period and the impact of prejudice on individual behaviors. The film will be streamed free of charge on the Festival website on Saturday 27 March from 8 pm to midnight (CET).

As an ancillary initiative to L’immagine e la parola, on Friday 26 March the Artistic Director of the Locarno Film Festival, Giona A. Nazzaro, will join the panel of a Roundtable with industry professionals entitled “Films in the time of streaming: alternative promotion, launch and distribution models”. Organized by the Ticino Film Commission in collaboration with CISA and PalaCinema. The Roundtable, streamed live, will be moderated by the filmmaker and newly appointed Head of the Ticino Film Commission, Niccolò Castelli, together with Giona A. Nazzaro.

The eighth edition of L’immagine e la parola, curated by Daniela Persico, will take place online on 27 March 2021. The event forms part of the Primavera Locarnese together with FestivalLibro (temporarily suspended) and Eventi letterari Monte Verità, re-scheduled this year for 11 to 14 November.

L’immagine e la parola – photos


Nicola Lagioia - Biography

Nicola Lagioia, born in Bari in 1973, made his fiction debut in 2001 with the novel Tre sistemi per sbarazzarsi di Tolstoj (senza risparmiare se stessi), published by minimum fax. He followed that up in 2004 with Occidente per principianti (Einaudi). His stories have been published in a number of collections, including Patrie impure (Rizzoli, 2003), La qualità dell'aria (minimum fax, 2004), which he curated jointly with Christian Raimo, Periferie (Laterza, 2006), Deandreide (Biblioteca Universale Rizzoli, 2006), Ho visto cose (Biblioteca Universale Rizzoli, 2008) and La storia siamo noi (Neri Pozza, 2008). With the novel Riportando tutto a casa (Einaudi, 2009), he won the SuperPremio Vittorini award, the Volponi Prize and the Viareggio Prize for fiction. In 2015 he won the Strega Prize for La ferocia (Einaudi), published in English as Ferocity. Since 2010 he has been one of the presenters of Pagina3, a daily press review of cultural features broadcast on the Radio 3 channel of Italian State broadcaster Rai. From 2013 to 2015 he was a member of the selection committee for the Venice Film Festival, and in 2020 he served with the Venice event again, this time on the jury for its principal competition. In 2017 he was appointed director of the Turin International Book Fair. His recent non-fiction novel La città dei vivi came out in autumn 2020, published by Einaudi.

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