Carlotta Vacchelli is a Ph.D. Candidate in Italian Studies at Indiana University, with a specialization in Comics Studies. She received her first M.A. in Modern Philology at the University of Pavia, and her second M.A. in Italian Studies at Indiana University. Her dissertation explores the influence of Andrea Pazienza on the next generation of Italian graphic novelists, especially through a close stylistic examination of panels and drawings, as well as techniques, and materials employed. Carlotta has published numerous articles on the subject matter making a case for comics, both auteur and mainstream, as a lively component of the long-term artistic discourse, and she has identified many Renaissance, Modern and Contemporary works as a source of comics figuration. Investigating different forms of image/text and image/narration relationships, and studying artists’ books is also part of Carlotta’s research agenda. Carlotta strongly believes in the existence of what she defines “expanded liberal arts,” an interdisciplinary, dialectic category where pop (underground, nerd, sub-, counter-, etc.) culture could be studied, taught, and understood as part of a greater set of humanistic knowledge.
At CIMA, Carlotta will complete her post-doc research on Mario Schifano’s art as an aesthetic source for the Italian comics avant-garde active on the journals Cannibale and Frigidaire in the 1970s and ’80s. She will analyze Schifano’s influence in the context of auteur comics of the 1960s–’80s, but she will also focus on Schifano’s later art, namely that of the 1980s, as the phase of “remediation” of many of the contents and styles of his paintings of the 1960s, in light of her conviction that Schifano’s reflection on media and merchandise plays a fundamental role in his Anschauung.