Capo Dei Capi by Matt Genovese
Having grown up in an Italian-American family in Northern New Jersey, I’m interested in unpacking how aspects of my identity have been influenced by my awareness of my family’s dynamics and my perception of assumptions surrounding Italian-American culture. In my Italian-American family we had it all; the loud parties, the grandma who did all the cooking, the cousins Tony and Paulie, and the wooden spoon that was used for more than just cooking. During family gatherings, the men congregated in the living room while the women were in the kitchen. The men were dressed in suits and masculinity was oozing everywhere. Witnessing such dynamics from an in-between, adolescent space allowed me to clearly observe the polarizing roles and the performance of gender within my family. Capo Dei Capi addresses these associated conventions and familial expectations, with particular interest in the hierarchy of power and the designation of roles within the family structure. I am interested in perceptions of Italian masculinity and femininity, and how such roles, as well as pride in being Italian, is passed down from generation to generation in my family. This body of work includes personal and family history, in addition to fictional narrative and appropriated media to help me navigate through the known and the unknown, the true and the false, and the implied and the perceived.
Matt Genovese lives and works in New York City.
To view more of Matt’s work, please visit his website.