The Other Shapes of Art rs548049170_1_69869_TT: Genesis of an Idea

The Other Shapes of Art

rs548049170_1_69869_TT: Genesis of an Idea

March 16th, 2021, from 12pm to 1:30pm (NYC Time) / from 5pm to 6:30pm (CET)

Streaming on Ramdom’s Facebook page at the following link:


An event promoted by the Italian Cultural Institute, New York


The project rs548049170_1_69869_TT (The Other Shapes of Me) by artist Emilio Vavarella, winner of the 6th Edition of Italian Council (program to promote Italian contemporary art in the world by the Directorate-General for Contemporary Creativity of the Italian Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities and Tourism), arrives at the Italian Cultural Institute in New York, with an event titled rs548049170_1_69869_TT: Genesis of an Idea, curated by Ramdom.

The title of the project – rs548049170_1_69869_TT (The Other Shapes of Me) – refers to the first line of text resulting from the genotyping of Vavarella’s DNA. The work is based on the translation of his genetic code in a large fabric, through the labour of his mother, using one of the first modern computational machines: the Jacquard loom. The result is a monumental work composed of a fabric, a loom and a video, that is part of the permanent collection of MAMbo – Museo d’Arte Moderna di Bologna.


The New York event will focus in particular on the film Genesis and the artist book ‘rs548049170_1_69869_TT’ (published by MOUSSE), along with a discussion of the theoretical issues raised by Vavarella’s project.


The program will be in streeming on Ramdom’s Facebook page and will take place in the presence of Fabio Finotti (Director of Italian Cultural Institute, New York), Emilio Vavarella (Artist and Researcher, Harvard University), Claudio Zecchi (Curator of Ramdom), Stephen Monteiro (Media Scholar and Theorist, Department of Communication Studies at Concordia University, Montreal) and Ursula Wolz (Lecturer, Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts, The New School, New York).



Event program. Themes and speakers.

Total duration 1hour 30min


Institutional introduction

Fabio Finotti (Director of Italian Cultural Institute, New York)

Duration 10 minutes


Introduction to the project

Claudio Zecchi (Curator, Ramdom)

Duration 10 minutes


Emilio Vavarella

Thinking about Thought

Duration 10 minutes


Screening of the film Genesis

Full HD Video, 20′, 2020

Duration 20 minutes


Ursula Wolz (Lecturer, Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts, The New School, New York)

Weaving and computation

Duration 10 minutes


Stephen Monteiro (Media Scholar and Theorist, Department of Communication Studies at Concordia University, Montreal)

Data, Bodies, and the Piecework of Digital interactivity

Duration 10 minutes



Claudio Zecchi and Emilio Vavarella

10 minutes



Institutional partners:

Italian Cultural Institute, New York; Apulia Region; MAMbo – Museo d’Arte Moderna di Bologna (Italy); The Film Study Center (Harvard); Arthub (Shanghai); Gallleriapiù (Italy)


Technical partner:

Tessitura Giaquinto (Gagliano del Capo, LE)

Media partner:

ATP Diary




Ramdom is an organization devoted to cultural and artistic production, based in Gagliano del Capo, Italy. It was founded in 2011 by Paolo Mele and Luca Coclite with the aim of providing international projection to contemporary art projects produced in dialogue with the local territory of Salento. Over the past seven years, its activities have included exhibitions, public art productions, residencies, and workshops, plus two ongoing research-focused endeavors: Investigation of Extreme Lands and DEFAULT. In 2016 it launched Until the End of the Sea Residency program, dedicated to artists and curators under thirty-five. Ramdom’s headquarters, Lastation, is located on the first floor of a still-active railway station (Gagliano–Leuca) in southeast Italy and is home to a media library, a residency room, and an open space for exhibitions and performances.


Claudio Zecchi is curator at Ramdom. His research investigates new visions and readings of the public sphere, analyzing the relationship between practices, territories, and local communities. He was part of the curatorial team of the 2013 Biennale of Young Artists from Mediterranean Europe. He has undertaken research projects, mainly to investigate discursive formats, at Fabbrica del Vapore, Milan (2014), Residency Unlimited, New York (2015), New Art Exchange, Nottingham, (2016), Pivô Pesquisa, São Paulo (2017), and TOKAS_Tokyo Arts and Space (2018).


Emilio Vavarella is an artist and researcher at Harvard University, where he is currently working toward a PhD in film and visual studies and critical media practice. Vavarella’s work blends interdisciplinary art practice and theoretical research, and centers on the relationship between humans and technological power. He has exhibited at MAXXI – Museo nazionale delle arti del XXI secolo, Rome; KANAL – Centre Pompidou, Bruxelles; MAMbo – Museo d’Arte Moderna di Bologna; and the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes in Santiago.


Ursula Wolz studies educational informatics and combines academics and entrepreneurship to develop computer- based learning environments for hands-on and hands-off computer workshops, storytelling engines for instruction, and artificially intelli- gent tutors. She founded RiverSound Solutions with a mission to empower computer users to become creators with—rather than consumers of— computing. Her recent work focuses on “code crafting,” an exploration of how computer science concepts (from function parameters, to path finding, to generative design) can be expressed through hand and machine textile production.


Stephen Monteiro is a media scholar and theorist based in the Department of Communication Studies at Concordia University, Montreal. His work focuses on the cultural roots and consequences of media design and networked interactivity. He is the author of two books, The Fabric of Interface (MIT Press, 2017) and Screen Presence (Edinburgh University Press, 2016), and edited The Screen Media Reader (Bloomsbury, 2017). His essays and articles on contemporary media have appeared in numer- ous international journals.