Lecture: Gender Bending In Eighteenth Century Naples

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Lecture: Gender Bending In Eighteenth Century Naples
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Gender Bending in Eighteenth-Century Naples: Reflections on Giuseppe Bonito’s The Femminiello

Dawson W. Carr, The Janet and Richard Geary Curator of European Art

Due to widespread prejudice, images of gender nonconformity are extremely rare in European and American art before the twentieth century. A recent acquisition, Giuseppe Bonito’s The Femminiello, is an extraordinary depiction of cross-dressing in the mid-18th century. The lecture will examine the unusual cultural context that gave rise to its creation in Naples, where femminielli (which might be translated as “little female-men”) have long been considered important members of the community.

Advance tickets recommended.

Giuseppe Bonito, Il Femminiello, 1740/1760, oil on canvas, Gift of the Ross Family Fund of Equity Foundation
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By: Portland Art Museum