My job is to study fossil and algae and it is a bit as if I wanted to reconstruct a person’s life from his/her diary, a diary with torn pages, erased writings, and you have to imagine what is missing.
If I tell you “unfinished” what is the first thing that comes to your mind?
The Rondanini Pietà comes to mind. I was born in Milan and the Castello Sforzesco is one of the first places visited as a child, and this sense of incompleteness struck me right away … understanding that it may be that your project has to collide with the events of life and remain unfinished.
Unfinished what colour/shape does it have?
For me, green is the colour of the unfinished.
Is there something you have left undone in your life?
My professional life is full of unfinished business. My job is to study fossil and algae and it is a bit as if I wanted to reconstruct a person’s life from his or her diary, a diary with torn pages, deleted writings, and you have to imagine what is missing.
An unfinished project that is important to me is contained in my thesis and has a name: the green level project. Layered rocks tell the story of the Earth. Sometimes very long periods are not represented in the layers, or they are only partially represented. The green layer is a geological moment that has not been preserved in the layers. In place of the sediments that would have told us about a certain period of time, there are small grains of a green mineral (glauconite) and small fragments of rocks that have been eroded and no longer exist in their natural position. I would like to understand what happened in those erased periods of time. For this reason, for me, green is the colour of the unfinished.
What are the emotions related to the unfinished?
I am an optimistic person, if something is not finished I still have space to dedicate myself to it, I tell myself that I will do it. For example, I have a dream of taking a trip to Australia on the east coast to see Shark Bay where some of the oldest forms of life on the planet are still living. Even for the green level I know that I can still do it and go back to studying it, I still have about ten years of work ahead of me. I don’t see anything as definitive.
Is there anything unfinished that you would like finished?
I would like all steps to be taken to ensure true equal rights for people, the transition to a more fair world. On this subject I experience a sense of incompleteness, as a young woman I did not realize it; today, I am much more aware of everything that is missing in terms of equality.
What is fertilizer for you? What does it mean to fertilize?
For me, fertilizer is something that nourishes the soul. My main fertilizers are books, sometimes people’s speeches. My favourite is the Odyssey, in the Odyssey there is everything. I always finish books, the only one I left unfinished is The Man Without Qualities.
Where do you keep your unfinished works?
The green level is heavy as a rock on my desk.