CIMA’s 2019 Spring Interns

Read on to learn about our new interns for the season. Nicole Boyd (Fall-Spring intern) and Jiayi Gu (Fall-Spring intern) will be staying through the end of our exhibition. Meet Scott Fischbein, Elisa Pellegrini, and Marta Rossena .

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Scott Fischbein

How did you first become interested in art history?
I’m from NYC and my parents are big art lovers, so I spent a lot of my childhood being dragged from museum to museum by them. But sometime around high school, I started to actually enjoy going to museums to see art. I remember the year I was in 9th grade there was a Van Gogh and then a James Ensor exhibit at the MOMA, a Morandi exhibit and then a David Smith exhibit at the Guggenheim and a Francis Bacon exhibit at the MET. My parents took me to all of them and for the first time ever something clicked. I realized art could be exciting and weird and shocking. When I got to college, beyond my Intro to Art History classes, I took two classes that really blew my mind: one was a Pre-WWII European Avant-Garde art class and the other was a 20th Century American Avant-Garde Class. I guess since then I’ve been hooked!

Best 3 museums or art sites worldwide according to your taste.
That’s hard…the permanent collection at the MOMA is one of my favorite things on earth for sure. The other two spots would be a toss-up for me between the Prado in Madrid, the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, the Maeght in St-Paul de Vence and the Neue Galerie in NYC.

What do you like to do when you are not working?
I love running, hiking, rock climbing, practicing my French, exploring galleries, museums and food in NYC and studying literature and philosophy. I enjoy writing too when I’m able to find either the time or inspiration!

What do you hope to gain from this experience at CIMA? What are things that you are most looking forward to?
I’ve been going to museums for so long and I’m so excited to finally be able to actually participate in the process of exhibiting art to the public. I hope to find a career one day where I can make ideas, culture and art accessible for people to study and enjoy, and CIMA is absolutely the perfect place for me to start exploring this path! I’m also really excited to learn more about the Metaphysical Period of Italian painting–Italian Futurism was the only Italian modernist movement I got to study in college, so I’m really looking forward to learning more about this dynamic period of Italian art history that I don’t think a lot of Americans know about–the fact that Sironi wasn’t in my art history textbooks is a crime!

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Elisa Pellegrini

When was your first time in New York? What surprised you the most about this city?
The first time I had the chance to visit New York was the August of two years ago with my family. I remember that I was amazed by its dynamism and its vitality. Moreover, I was fascinated by the fact that it is such a multicultural environment. For example, I am from Milan and I am quite used to eating foreign food but here it is totally at another level and I remember that it was great to taste a different food from a different country every day. However, what really hit me the most were all the possibilities that the city offers in terms of cultural events, museums and galleries. I had the feeling that I’d never be able to be totally satisfied because I always wanted to do and experience more. I think that all of these features make the city exciting and extremely stimulating.

What do you hope to gain from this experience at CIMA? What are the things that you are most looking forward to?
Taking part in all the cultural activities presented by CIMA is the perfect occasion to learn much from the professionals of the field. I expect to gain expertise from co-workers, fellows and other interns. I hope to deepen my knowledge about La Pittura Metafisica but also to learn about the daily function of an art gallery and of a non-profit research centre, as CIMA is. I’m looking forward to making available my competences and to strengthen them understanding in detail all the internal dynamics of a cultural institution. I want to put myself out there and I’m ready for any new thin that comes!

Best 3 museums or art sites worldwide according to your taste?
Due to the fact that I really like Impressionism, my first two choices would be Musée d’Orsay and Musée de l’Orangerie in Paris. Indeed, I would look at Monet’s water lilies and to Degas’ dancers for hours. As third choice, I would say MoMA because of its enormous beautiful collection. When I first visited MoMA I was especially charmed by the Abstract expressionism artists such as Rothko and Newman and from Picasso’s masterpiece Les demoiselles d’Avignon. Picasso was one of the first artists I studied in school and I still remember how I was excited after the first time I saw an exhibition dedicated to him. However, I can’t exclude from my list of favourite museums also Gallerie d’Italia and Museo del ‘900 in Milan, which I have always visited since I was a child.

If you could purchase any painting, which one would it be? Why? And where would you put it in your apartment?
It is very difficult to make a selection and to choose just one painting. I think that in my dreams I would like to have a big apartment with enough space for both sculptures and paintings. I imagine a big wall in the entrance for a Pollock, in order to get all the energy from that. Then, I would put more relaxing paintings such as Bal au moulin de la galette by Renoir or Un dimanche après-midi à la grande jatte by Seurat in the living room, in order to have the space to contemplate them. I remember that when I saw these paintings in museums I immediately felt relaxed because they transmit serenity and balance. Also, I would not exclude sculptures. For example, the Nike of Samothrace or Bird in Space by Brancusi.

Well.. maybe it wouldn’t be the best choice in terms of curatorship but I would be happy to have the chance to look at all these pieces of art every day!

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Marta Rossena

When was your first time in New York? What surprised you the most about this city?
On my first day in New York, it was late afternoon; the sky was getting darker, and the lights of Manhattan were glowing. I wandered around SoHo, with its many fire escape stairs on the facades of buildings and crowds of people in coffee shops, working, reading, talking. It seemed to me like the whole world was gathered in NY, as if it were a cultural meeting point where anything could happen. The thing that surprised me the most was the number of “layers” I discovered throughout the city: the subway, an underground world always in motion; the streets, plentiful, lively, and busy; and, of course, the infinite floors (encompassing apartments, shops, offices, galleries, hidden gardens) stacked one on top of the other, practically reaching the sky: as I walked, I kept my nose pointed upwards (something I never do while home in Milano)!

How did you first become interested in art history?
I’ve been an art enthusiast for a very long time, since childhood. I come from a family of art lovers, and as a kid I would go with my Dad and big sister to Brera, where my Dad went to high school and my sister, many years later, would study scenic design. My dad would tell us stories about the paintings and the artists, and once we returned home, my sister and I would sit in the floor, grab paper and pencils, and commemorate our visit in drawings. We would sketch whatever we remembered seeing: one particular painting, maybe a whole room, the cloister of Brera. I could say I have an entire personal catalogue of drawings by now! I really like that my interest in art has been “personal” from the beginning and that certain paintings are connected to my childhood memories, to a particular day, a smell, or even a feeling.

Best 3 museums or art sites worldwide according to your taste?
I really feel like my answer to this question could change everyday. But today, I would say the Villa Borghese in Rome, because Bernini’s sculptures are among my favorite things in the world and I could spend hours and hours every day just staring at them (especially the Rape of Persephone). Next, I’ll say the Met here in NYC, which is one of my latest museum crushes! Finally, my third choice is the Biennale di Venezia. Not one in particular, but the tradition and concept of the event itself: it’s an ideal manifestation of art and architecture, a celebration of new ideas alongside old tradition. I love that, when I walk through the Arsenale and the Giardini, the sites at once feel familiar and new… because the exhibition they host – with its new projects and interpretations – make me look at these spaces I’ve visited before through a different perspective.

What do you like to do when you are not working?
As a student coming from the Politecnico di Milano’s Department of Architecture, I am of course very passionate about architecture. I appreciate it not only for its practical aspects, but also its “humanistic” meanings. I think of architecture not as a closed, static object, but as an open organism that exists in an osmotic relationship with the historical and cultural landscape that surrounds it. For this reason, I really love studying and reading about art, literature, philosophy, and cinematography, as well as writing about topics that I find interesting and finding connections between them.