Flowers' poetical lines: following Emily Dickinson's footsteps


Crucus e ragno

Watercolour workshop by Silvia Molinari

19 - 20 September 2020

We have offered a follow-up to Writers and Garden, so this time Silvia Molinari has taken you along a virtual walk in Emily Dickinson's garden, letting her sophisticated watercolours marry with some of the most beautiful lines written by America's most loved poet.

The garden in Amherst (a small town in New England) was her poetic laboratory and it is still alive in the poet's works. In her 1789 poetry collection dated, the vegetal element occurs more than 600 times; there, she mentions more than 60 varieties of plants. Moreover, there are about 350 flower quotes, especially on the wild ones she loved best. Daisies and violets are among her favorites.

Emily Dickinson's universe is made up of tiny and simple things. Few poets can outline the blooming of lilacs, the opening of a dandelion, the red scarves of the robins, the sliding of a snake in the grass, the sewing of spiders as she did in her memorable lines.

We have entered Emily Dickinson's garden at the beginning of the autumnal equinox, a period that is particularly generous for its blooms and sweet fruit after the heat of the summer sunlight. Evenings can already be cool, and here the first red leaves might peep.

In a two-day workshop we have painted some of Dickinson's favorite essences: aster, lilies,  roses, daisies, cyclamen, small apples, cotton flowers and  sassafras leaves... voices of a season and of places always on the move.

Isabella Rizzato's voice accompanied us in the poetic universe of Emily Dickinson, highlighting its peculiarities and reading some of the most evocative verses related to the world of nature.

In collaboration with Elite Viaggi - Vicenza

The workshop was accompanied by Winsor & Newton, the watercolour producer par excellance, which has provided participants with samples of material and Borciani and Bonazzi, a high quality brush company, which has given a selection of their products.


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Silvia Molinari was born in Piacenza in 1976. She graduated in decorative techniques from the  Paolo Toschi Institute of Art in Parma. She lives in the countryside of Emilia-Romagna, in a house surrounded by fields and the rhythms of nature. Her artistic career includes the study of and experimentation with various pictorial disciplines, but it is through watercolor that she best expresses her talent.

The combination of the simplest elements (water, pigment and graphite on paper) are, through her technique, the best means of interpreting the subjects she loves to capture: shrubs, vegetable scraps, leaves and wild flowers that seem to have slipped on the white paper a moment ago; she is deeply interested in weeds, those tiny and tenacious heroines of the third landscape synthesized by Gilles Clément. Her watercolors begin with elbows on a windowsill, rummaging in drawers, collecting things, walking, perhaps getting lost.

She is the author, together with the writer Alessia Napolitano, of the book "Il Cosario", published by Edizione Corsare (2016), for which she created the illustrations. She also made the illustrations of "Prendere il Volo", a text coming out for the Topipittori publishing house, written by the author Marina Marinelli.

From the many exhibitions, personal and collective,  which she has taken part: in 2011, the Venice Biennale in the regional headquarters of Emilia-Romagna, invited by the journalist Camillo Langone, who then selected her for the "Excellent Painters" portal; Affordable Art Fair in New York and Milano; in Tokyo, at the Ginza 1 Chome Gallery, with the San Francesco Gallery in Reggio Emilia; JCO Gallery, Park City - Utah. 

Silvia illustrated the agenda Gardenia magazine for the years 2011, 2017 and she will be the author of year 2020.

She created the works that animated the National Assembly of LIPU in Parma, the scientific convention "Birds In Europe 3" with a urban artistic event, a project curated by Kreativhouse studio. Also for LIPU she illustrated the book dedicated to the recognition and conservation status of birds in Italy "Conoscerli, Proteggerli". 



  • ACQUERELLI - Salamon & C. Gallery, Milano  - curated by Lorenza Salamon
  • FIORI IN OFFICINA - Officina dell'Arte, Piacenza


  • MADE IN ITALIA - Ginza 1 Chome Gallery, Tokyo - collective exhibition curated by David Parenti and by the Galleria San Francesco of Reggio Emilia
  • PRIMOVERE - Castello di Felino, Parma - curated by Camillo Langone
  • C'ERO SOLTANTO - Bookbank, Piacenza - curated by Elisa Bozzi


  • DEMETRA ANESIDORA - Modena - curated by Alessia Napolitano


  • AFFORDABLE ART FAIR - Milano - collective exhibition curated by Galleria d'Arte Il Lepre
  • BINARIO UNICO PIACENZA - ROMA - Palazzo Incontro, Roma - collective exhibiton curated by Galleria d'Arte Il Lepre


  • AFFORDABLE ART FAIR - Chelsea, New York - collective exhibition curated by Galleria d'Arte Il Lepre


  • BIENNALE DI VENEZIA - Palazzo Pigorini, Parma - curated by Camillo Langone 
  • ERBACCE - Galleria d'Arte Il Lepre
  • GENERAZIONE CASSANDRA - Perino, Piacenza - collective exhibition curated by Zeroarte


  • ACQUERELLI - Villa Necchi Campiglio, Milano - curated by Gardenia Cairo Editore


  • DENTRO, FUORI - with the photographer Lucia Covi - Piacenza
  • UN ATTIMO PRIMA, UN ATTIMO DOPO - Surimono, Milano


  • ACQUERELLI - ZEN, Milano - curated by Zen Arte


  • ... E ANCORA PRIMAVERA - Treviso - curated by Maddalena Dal Sie


  • MESSER TULIPANO - Pralormo (TO) - curated by Consolata Pralormo
  • FLORA ET POMONA - Galleria Salamon & C., Milano - collective exhibition curated by Lorenza Salamon


  • KIMONO -  l'Acquaforte Gallery, Torino