chapter  6
36 Pages


Threads, Laces and Stitches

This chapter shows how writing and narration are involved with the textural significance of the photograph as a material object, and as a metaphorical fragment of a larger narrative fabric that imbricates stories of women's displacement, loss and trauma. It focuses on the memoir by Italian American writer and artist Annie Lanzillotto aims to illustrate how text and texture can engage with the surface condition of both photograph and skin in narratives of dislocation and loss. The memoir itself is dense and rich in vivid details and poetic reflections, similarly to needlework that interlaces inlays and patterns of life. In contrast to the flawlessness of the lace Lanzillotto sees in Acquaviva, however, her work is a tessellation composed of wounds, holes and imperfect threads. Lanzillotto's body, fraught with illness and distressed by stitches, is caught in the imperfect fabric of her Italian American family.