11-20 novembre 2015

Wednesday, November 11, 5.30 p.m.

“La ricotta” di Pasolini: un film maledetto?

Meeting with Francesco Galluzzi and screening of the film
Introduces Marino Demata, Rive Gauche-ArteCinema

La ricotta  is a short movie by Pasolini, a part of the film ROGOPAG made up of episodes (the title derives from the names of the directors of the four episodes: Roberto Rossellini, Jean-Luc Godard, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Ugo Gregoretti). The film was the center of a clamorous legal process that ended up with the director’s conviction to four months of jail sentence with the conditional for “libel against the religion of the State” and the requisition of the work. The process finally ended with his acquittal in appeal in May, 1964, because it was established that in this case no crime had occurred.

La ricotta is the story of the attempt of making a movie on the life of Christ. Pasolini’s originality shows in the combination and juxtaposition, in a discordant and desecrating way, of two levels of narration: on one side, the dreary adventures of the troupe, the lot of hungry extras (first of all the good thief called, significantly, Rags) and the actors with their often grotesque tantrums; on the other side, scenes of the Passion of Christ, where Pasolini tries to reproduce in a tableau vivant the depositions by Pontormo and Rosso Fiorentino. The separation of the two levels of narration is achieved by using black-and-white for the scenes of the set and colours for those of the Passion. It was a frontal attack to the Catholic church and to the bourgeois world, testified also by the words spoken by Orson Welles who, in the film, plays the director interviewed by a journalist: the common man “is a monster, a dangerous criminal, a conformist, a racist, a pro-slavery, a politically apathetic person…”

The showing of the movie will be introduced by Marino Demata, President of Rive Gauche-ArteCinema. After the show, Francesco Galluzzi will give a lecture on the relationship between Pasolini’s filmography and art history. The masterpieces by Pontormo and Rosso Fiorentino, one of the inspirations for La ricotta, as well as Caravaggio’s influence on many other movies (one for all, Mamma Roma) represent Pasolini’s rich imaginative world, nurtured by the lesson of the master Roberto Longhi.

Francesco Galluzzi, art historian and critic, in more than one occasion concentrated his studies on the occurrence of references to visual arts in Pasolini’s work. In particular, he published the volume Pasolini e la pittura (1994). Recently he published an essay on the historical and artistic background for the movie Accattone, in the dossier attached to the French translation of the movie’s script (2015).

Friday, November 20, 5.30 p.m.

“Appunti per un’Orestiade africana” by Pasolini: an unexpected movie

Meeting with Franco Zabagli and screening of the movie
Introduces Marino Demata, Rive Gauche-ArteCinema

Appunti per un’Orestiade africana is a 1970 documentary directed by Pasolini, realized by editing the material shot in Africa for a movie taking inspiration from the Orestiade by Aeschylus. The work is part of a bigger project, described as follows by Pasolini: “I was supposed to shoot that movie in different countries of the developing world (…) It was therefore a sort of documentary, an essay.”

The movie is ideally made up of three parts: a travel documentary in Uganda and Tanzania, a debate between Pasolini and the African students of the Università La Sapienza, the Jazz Concert by Yvonne Murray and Archie Savage at the FolkStudio in Rome. The film was successfully presented in Venice in September 1973 during the Days of Italian Cinema. According to Alberto Moravia the movie “(…) is one of the most beautiful by Pasolini. Never conventional, never picturesque, the documentary shows Africa in its authenticity, not at all exotic and therefore all the more mysterious and suggestive of the deep mystery of life itself, with its vast prehistoric landscapes, its miserable villages peopled by a farming and primitive humanity, its two or three ultramodern industrial and proletarian cities. Pasolini “feels” deep Africa with the same poetic and original sympathy with which he experienced the Roman suburbs and underclasses”.

The show will be introduced by Franco Zabagli with Marino Demata.


Franco Zabagli works at the Gabinetto Viesseux of Florence, where for many years he curated the archive of Pier Paolo Pasolini’s manuscripts. A philologist and scholar of Italian literature, he wrote many essays: in particular on Leopardi, Pascoli, Montale, Pasolini, published on “Paragone”, “Nuovi Argomenti”, “Il Ponte” and other magazines. He worked at the complete edition of Pier Paolo Pasolini’s cinema material appeared on the Mondadori “Meridiani” and, for Mondadori again, at the volume Lettere a Clizia by Eugenio Montale. He has been dedicating himself to drawing, calligraphy and collage since some years. He displayed his works in the exhibits Sedimenti e strappi (Florence, Libreria Babele, October 2011), and Papiers trouvès (Florence, Galleria Immaginaria, April-May 2015).

Marino Demata, formerly a teacher of philosophy, is the President of the Rive Gauche-ArteCinema association, for which he organizes events, congresses and cycles of screenings. The author of the essay Il destino nel cinema e nella realtà, in Lo sguardo critico for the magazine “Nuovo Fedic Notizie”, he is currently working at the publication of the novel I due soli, the story of a renowned director experiencing an artistic crisis, and at an extensive essay on the movies famous directors from all over the world dreamed about and never realized.

The Rive Gauche-ArteCinema, an association of cinematographic culture and art, operates in Florence, curating many festivals and screenings among which those connected with the New Latin-American Cinema, the Turkish movie production, Xavier Dolan and the eastern world. In 2014, in collaboration with the University of Florence, he organized a conference day to celebrate the 50th anniversary of “Il Vangelo secondo Matteo” by Pasolini. He is currently curating a festival of experimental movies.

The entrance is free and with limited seats and it does not include the access to the museum.