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Authors: Giovanna Ginex, Rosangela Percoco
Pages: 320 p.
The novel by Fernanda Wittgens, the first woman director of the Pinacoteca di Brera in twentieth-century Milan.The Lark. She was nicknamed Fernanda Wittgens, for her discreet size, evident only when the wings open in flight. Humble creature, but powerful and sublime. There could not be a more fitting definition for a woman who, despite performing titanic feats, avoided the clamor of the chronicles, working day and night at the service of art, beauty and freedom. Giovanna Ginex and Rosangela Percoco do her justice by reconstructing the novel of an extraordinary life. Born in 1903 to a family of Austro-Hungarian origin, Fernanda began as a high school teacher, became a journalist and in 1928 entered the Pinacoteca di Brera with the qualification of "adventitious worker". The tireless dedication allows her to become assistant to the director, Ettore Modigliani, and to contribute decisively to the growth of the museum. She took over her teacher's post when he was removed for racial reasons, and thus became the first woman to hold such a prestigious role. In the dark days of the bombing of Milan she did everything to save the works entrusted to her, but also the lives of many Jews. His arrest for anti-fascism and his sentence of four years in prison did not stifle his courage. Indeed, at the end of the conflict his energies seem to have multiplied: back in Brera, she fights to rebuild the Pinacoteca from the rubble and make it a "living museum", a reference point for international culture. This novel is the portrait of a volcanic woman, stubborn, against the current. It is the true story of a fighter, a symbol that does not belong to the past but to the future.