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Italy @ Contact Photography Festival 2024 | I Made Them Run Away | Martina Zanin

I MADE THEM RUN AWAY_Instagram version


I Made Them Run Away

Martina Zanin

Curated by Ask Again

Design by Melissa Pallini

496 Huron St | Toronto ON

Thursday, May 2 | 5PM

Click here to register for the opening event

May 3 – May 30, 2024
Monday to Friday
10AM to 4PM


I Made Them Run Away is a multi-layered story recurring the complicated triangle relationship between the artist, her mother, and the “man.” Zanin weaves together family photographs and contemporary imagery with texts written by her mother.

The poetical and wistful writing from her mother’s diary clashes with the torn family photographs from which her mother tore off all her ex-boyfriends. Captured by Zanin are objects, gestures, animals, body parts, and idyllic visions, symbolic images that reconstruct feelings and sensations that emerged from the past.

The interplay of perspectives created a dialogue between mother and daughter in two different moments in time, reflecting on the role of the past, and exploring the coexistence of opposite feelings within relationships, such as compassion and anger, attraction and repulsion, vulnerability and strength.

Curated by Ask Again; exhibition design by Melissa Pallini.

Presented by the Contact Photography Festival and the Istituto Italiano di Cultura Toronto.

MARTINA ZANIN is a visual artist who works with various media, central to her practice are photography, writing, installations, and artist books. Zanin is the author of the photobook I Made Them Run Away, published by Skinnerboox, and Older Than Love, a self-published artist book. In 2023 she won the Terna Prize with her installation Dear F. In 2021, she received the first prize Camera Work and was among the recipients of Giovane Fotografia Italiana and Cantica21. Italian Contemporary Art Everywhere, promoted by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (MAECI), the Italian Ministry of Culture (MiC), and the Directorate General for Contemporary Creativity. Zanin has been nominated for the Foam Paul Huf Award 2019 and the C/O Berlin Talent Award 2020. Her work has been exhibited in solo and group shows nationally and internationally, including Cassina Projects (2024), Palazzo delle Esposizioni (2023), Fondazione Orestiadi (2023), Foto Forum (2023), Fondazione Pastificio Cerere (2023), Museo Benaki (2022), IIC Abu Dhabi (2021), FMAV – Fondazione Modena Arti Visive (2021), Fotografia Europea (2021), Goethe Institute (2017). Her works are part of public collections, such as MoMA Library, MEP – Maison Européenne de la Photographie, FMAV – Fondazione Modena Arti Visive, and Fondazione Orestiadi.

MELISSA PALLINI is an Italian-Canadian art director and graphic designer, with expertise in exhibition design, book design, and photo editing. Her research centers on understanding how individuals respond to images, layouts, paper, materials, colors, spaces, and how to effectively communicate through diverse media and formats. She firmly believe in the significance of cross-disciplinary influence and inspiration. Since 2019, she has collaborated with Skinnerboox Publishing House, focusing on book design and production oversight. She currently works as an art director consultant for Fantini Wines, where she previously served as the lead designer, and frequently collaborates with cultural institutions (MAXXI | Museo nazionale delle arti del XXI secolo, Museo di Roma in Trastevere, KLIMA ARENA, FORMAT FESTIVAL, among others) in the development of exhibition design.

ASK AGAIN is a design and art direction studio founded and run by Melissa Pallini (art director) and Martina Zanin (visual artist and photographer). ASK AGAIN is involved in editorial and exhibition projects in the cultural field, working closely with artists, publishers, organizations, and institutions in the development of personal and commissioned projects at all stages of conception and production.