Exhibition – Italian Australian: Creating Culture, Defining Diaspora27 Aug 2015, by News in
Museo Italiano, Co.As.It., 199 Faraday Street, Carlton
27 August – 16 October 2015
Tuesday – Friday 10am-5pm; Saturday 12.30pm-5pm
Opening event: Wednesday 26 August, 6.30pm
Guest speaker: Professor Ghassan Hage, The University of Melbourne
Sometimes we feel we straddle two cultures;
at other times, that we fall between two stools.
Wogs, Dagos, Post-War migrants, New Australians, Zips, Marios and Marias, I-Ties, Multicultural Australia. All these phrases have been used to categorise and to describe the Italian diaspora in Australia. This exhibition seeks to subtly address these labels, some embraced, some forgotten and some derogatory by asking the question: Can we define ourselves? Is it possible to document the commonalities of experience and of culture and to start to trace the transition from migrant group to diaspora? Documentary and street photography by Melbourne photographer, Gracie Lolicato along with the portraits and recorded interviews of around 200 volunteers result in an exhibition that may in some ways confirm your impressions of Italian-Australians and may also challenge it. This is not a nostalgic gaze into tradition, nor is it a definitive contemporary document, but rather an introduction to the idea that it is possible to be both Australian and Italian, and it is possible to feel like you are neither.