Color photograph of Valerio Morabito sitting at a table with a pencil in hand and a drawing on paper, an open book, and a tablet computer in front of him

Valerio Morabito

Enel Foundation Italian Fellow in Architecture, Urban Design, and Landscape Architecture
January 3–April 22, 2022
Architect and Professor, Università Mediterranea di Reggio Calabria and University of Pennsylvania
Project title
Imagining American Cities
Project description

Valerio Morabito will produce a series of drawings of American cities, real places but retold in signs, traces, and symbols. These cities, seen and imagined through conversations with members of the American Academy community, will be maps of ideas and memories, a guide to the unique American landscape in which verbal narratives subvert more familiar meanings and perceptions of place. Morabito thinks of his project through the lens of evolutionary theory: gradual, step-by-step development; stages of redundancy and failure; and exaptation, or the ways in which adaptive features take on new functions. The resulting bricolage of decontextualized objects, sectioned places, memory relics, and hidden messages will compound landscape, art, and poetry into fifteen or twenty large-scale drawings on rough cotton canvas.