October 2017


Lindsay Harris - Matera Imagined/Matera Immaginata: Photography and a Southern Italian Town

  • Monday, 16 October 2017 - 6:30pm
AAR Lecture Room
David Seymour, A peasant girl leading her family's horse back from the fields to her cave home. Matera, Basilicata, Italy, 1948. Magnum Photos©David Seymor/Magnum Photos.

This event is part of the series New Work in the Arts & Humanities: East and West.

In the twentieth century, the southern Italian town of Matera has evolved in the collective imagination from an ancient backwater at the edge of civilization to a cultural bellwether for the future of Europe.  In the 1940s, following the publication of Italian author Carlo Levi’s best-selling memoir, Christ Stopped at Eboli, Matera became a symbol of southern Italian backwardness.  Today, just over a generation later, Matera has emerged as a model of authenticity that will represent Europe as Capital of Culture in 2019. In conjunction with the Academy's fall exhibition, Matera Imagined/Matera Immaginata: Photography and a Southern Italian Town, this talk will explore Matera's recent evolution through photography.

Lindsay Harris is the Andrew W. Mellon Professor of the Humanities at the American Academy in Rome and curator of the exhibition Matera Imagined/Matera Immaginata: Photography and a Southern Italian Town, which is currently on show in the Gallery of the American Academy until 26 November 2017.

The event will be held in English. You can watch it livestreamed at On this occasion, the exhibition will be open from 5pm to 8pm.


Inaugural Lecture
Dacia Maraini
12 October 2017
5:30pm, AAR Lecture Room

Exhibition Opening
12 October 2017
6:30pm-9pm, AAR Gallery

Emmet Gowin
A Life in Photography
14 November 2017
6:30pm, AAR Lecture Room

Mario Cresco with Roberta Valtorta
Photography and Matera
21 November 2017
6:30pm, AAR Lecture Room


Thursday-Sunday, 4pm-7pm
12 October- 26 November 2017

The exhibition will also be open on 16 October, 14 November and 21 November from 5pm to 8pm.

Please note: valid photo ID is required for entry into the American Academy in Rome. Backpacks and luggage with dimensions larger than cm 40 x 35 x 15 (inches 16 x 14 x 6) are not permitted on the property. There are no locker facilities available.