The Kunda Project

kunda TN

An interview with a revolutionary woman, Indira Rodriguez, on her project “Kunda La Vagina” and what inspired her to create it.

news header

kunda

Interview with a Revolutionary Woman: The Kunda Project 

By Blending Staff

Indira Rodriguez was born in Venezuela, and as young girl began illustrating her travels throughout South America. She shares that the landscapes, the encounters, the lessons, and most of all, the Women that she met along her path were what first inspired her to live a life dedicated to finding freedom and happiness for all Women. In 2015, during a master degree program in Institutional Advertisement, Multimedia Communications, and Event Planning at UNIFI (Università degli Studi di Firenze), one of Indira’s course projects involved a group project on female empowerment for Blending Magazine. After completing her studies at UNIFI, Indira started a revolutionary project titled “Kunda La Vagina.”

This project was born out of Indira’s need to share her own story: a story of self-discovery and internal struggles to find her own natural femininity. Passionate about these topics and about the importance of Women as the givers of life, Indira is determined to give value to the meaning of being a Woman. The project consists of weekly newsletters, weekly informative videos, female empowerment sessions and workshops, and free monthly meditations. This year in Florence on International Women’s Day (8 March), the first exhibit Piena di Grazia (Full of Grace) debuted in collaboration with the ARCI association and Casa Del Popolo of Settignano.

This December, the project’s first book Mandalenado En Mi Cuerpo will be published in Spanish, and subsequently in Italian.

What is the project “Kunda La Vagina” about?

IR: The project is dedicated to creating spaces for Women. We want the word “Vagina” and everything that it stands for to be natural, without a sense of taboo or discrimination attached to it. By respecting and loving every Woman, we’d like to give back to each her place in this world.

“She was born a Woman so she could teach and love, destined to become a teacher of life and of love.” – La Profezia della curandera, H.H. Mamani.

“Kunda la Vagina” is a sacred space for courageous women who seek change – the kind of change that begins within ourselves. We want this world to be full of Women whose well-being, happiness and personal growth are guaranteed to them.

Kunda is the Avatar of the project. She’s like the doll that every Woman identifies with, the doll that each of us carry within, the one that understands, speaks to us, and teaches us. Kunda represents the internal spirit of Women; our voice and our consciousness.

There are other characters along for the journey with Kunda:

Penelopelos is Kunda’s pet spider. She doesn’t have the most positive of personalities, but she causes us to reflect on things, to question things. Penelopelos invites us to seek change, to break from the paradigm and get to know ourselves better.

Serena Vulva is Kunda’s most loyal friend. She represents the alliances, the friendships and the sisterhood between Women. She’s the first Woman ally that Kunda has.

David is the male representation in the project. He supports Kunda, he’s a great friend and a great love. In this project, there is also a space for men, because in order to change the world, men and women have to do the work together.

Why is she called Kunda?


IR: When feminists began to wear buttons and t-shirts with slogans like ‘C**T POWER’ which proclaimed and reclaimed the power of the vagina, I saw the fight for the restoration of an antiquated power. “After all, the Indo-European word cunt was derived from the goddess Kunda or Cunti, and shares the same root as kin and country.” (from Eve Ensler’s Vagina Monologues)

The name “Kunda” reminds us how a Woman, in her entirety, has been devalued in a patriarchal society, and reminds us that it is our job to rediscover that power, giving it back to every Woman and every girl.

Who is involved in this project?

IR: The project is supported by diverse Women across the globe, starting with Marjorie Bratt in the United States, Gabriela Angrisano in Spain, Alexis Briz and Aida Cavallo in Italy, Carolina Franco Ricart and Daniela Mendez in Chile, and myself (project founder) in Colombia, and we are also supported by a great team of men, such as David Angulo in Colombia.

 

Facebook:

www.2343ec78a04c6ea9d80806345d31fd78-gdprlock/kundawomenscommunity

news header

kunda

Interview with a Revolutionary Woman: The Kunda Project 

By Blending Staff

Indira Rodriguez was born in Venezuela, and as young girl began illustrating her travels throughout South America. She shares that the landscapes, the encounters, the lessons, and most of all, the Women that she met along her path were what first inspired her to live a life dedicated to finding freedom and happiness for all Women. In 2015, during a master degree program in Institutional Advertisement, Multimedia Communications, and Event Planning at UNIFI (Università degli Studi di Firenze), one of Indira’s course projects involved a group project on female empowerment for Blending Magazine. After completing her studies at UNIFI, Indira started a revolutionary project titled “Kunda La Vagina.”

This project was born out of Indira’s need to share her own story: a story of self-discovery and internal struggles to find her own natural femininity. Passionate about these topics and about the importance of Women as the givers of life, Indira is determined to give value to the meaning of being a Woman. The project consists of weekly newsletters, weekly informative videos, female empowerment sessions and workshops, and free monthly meditations. This year in Florence on International Women’s Day (8 March), the first exhibit Piena di Grazia (Full of Grace) debuted in collaboration with the ARCI association and Casa Del Popolo of Settignano.

This December, the project’s first book Mandalenado En Mi Cuerpo will be published in Spanish, and subsequently in Italian.

What is the project “Kunda La Vagina” about?

IR: The project is dedicated to creating spaces for Women. We want the word “Vagina” and everything that it stands for to be natural, without a sense of taboo or discrimination attached to it. By respecting and loving every Woman, we’d like to give back to each her place in this world.

“She was born a Woman so she could teach and love, destined to become a teacher of life and of love.” – La Profezia della curandera, H.H. Mamani.

“Kunda la Vagina” is a sacred space for courageous women who seek change – the kind of change that begins within ourselves. We want this world to be full of Women whose well-being, happiness and personal growth are guaranteed to them.

Kunda is the Avatar of the project. She’s like the doll that every Woman identifies with, the doll that each of us carry within, the one that understands, speaks to us, and teaches us. Kunda represents the internal spirit of Women; our voice and our consciousness.

There are other characters along for the journey with Kunda:

Penelopelos is Kunda’s pet spider. She doesn’t have the most positive of personalities, but she causes us to reflect on things, to question things. Penelopelos invites us to seek change, to break from the paradigm and get to know ourselves better.

Serena Vulva is Kunda’s most loyal friend. She represents the alliances, the friendships and the sisterhood between Women. She’s the first Woman ally that Kunda has.

David is the male representation in the project. He supports Kunda, he’s a great friend and a great love. In this project, there is also a space for men, because in order to change the world, men and women have to do the work together.

Why is she called Kunda?


IR: When feminists began to wear buttons and t-shirts with slogans like ‘C**T POWER’ which proclaimed and reclaimed the power of the vagina, I saw the fight for the restoration of an antiquated power. “After all, the Indo-European word cunt was derived from the goddess Kunda or Cunti, and shares the same root as kin and country.” (from Eve Ensler’s Vagina Monologues)

The name “Kunda” reminds us how a Woman, in her entirety, has been devalued in a patriarchal society, and reminds us that it is our job to rediscover that power, giving it back to every Woman and every girl.

Who is involved in this project?

IR: The project is supported by diverse Women across the globe, starting with Marjorie Bratt in the United States, Gabriela Angrisano in Spain, Alexis Briz and Aida Cavallo in Italy, Carolina Franco Ricart and Daniela Mendez in Chile, and myself (project founder) in Colombia, and we are also supported by a great team of men, such as David Angulo in Colombia.

 

Facebook:

www.2343ec78a04c6ea9d80806345d31fd78-gdprlock/kundawomenscommunity

Read more: The Kunda Project

A Timeless Heart

body worlds exhibition s

The unique mixture of past and present gives the recent Body Worlds exhibition an entirely original element. Reported by J School students.

news header

body worlds florence exhibition b

BODY WORLDS: A TIMELESS HEART

By Jenna Wilen, Lindsay Hilliard, and Morgan Borkowski
Photo courtesy of the Body Worlds exhibition


The unique mixture of past and present gives the recent Body Worlds exhibition an entirely original element. Reported by J School students.

 

Florence is a modern city that has been able to preserve its abundant history while embracing all the technological advancements that the 21st century has to offer. The entire city emulates this relationship, rendering Florence timeless. The most intriguing display of this collaboration lies within the walls of one of Florence's most historic churches.

The Santo Stefano al Ponte church was constructed in the 12th century with traditional Romanesque elements. Although it has gone through a few renovations over the years, the church still holds itself as one of the oldest in Florence. So you can imagine our surprise regarding its association with Body Worlds, a traveling exhibition of human bodies and parts that recently concluded its run in Florence (Nov 25, 2015 - March 20, 2016).

As we entered the event we were amazed with how the exhibit existed flawlessly within the ancient walls. Everything was orchestrated thoughtfully, from the positions the bodies took, to the detail of veins in an arm. The ability to present this revolutionary view of the human body is possible because of the German anatomist Gunther Von Hagens.  With the use of a new technique called plastination, Hagens was able to unlock uncharted areas that combine beauty and science.  To find out more about Hagens and his invention readers can visit the International Society for Plastination's website.

The title of this exhibit is “Al Cuore della Vita,” meaning, “The Heart of Life.” Looking closely at the displays of human hearts, lungs and muscles, we found ourselves humbled by the human anatomy – by our own anatomy.  Some 15,000 individuals chose to donate their bodies for the expansion of knowledge and art. Hagens is breaking grounds within a structure that has been standing strong for almost a thousand years.

The ability to demonstrate how our own bodies function in such detail is something that 12th century Florentines could have never predicted. The choice to hold a Body Worlds event within Santo Stefano al Ponte creates a bridge between the centuries.  Florence’s ability to unite, adapt, and progress, while staying true to itself, is a quality unlike any other.  While the heart of life might be literal for Hagens, the heart of life for Florence exists within its roots and potential.

Read more: A Timeless Heart

Vogue Press Conference: An Intern's Perspective

franca sozzani vogue fashion night out florence allyson arrigo fua jschool thumb

FUA Communications & marketing intern Allyson Arrigo goes behind the scenes of the press conference that announced the upcoming Vogue Fashion's Night Out event in Florence.

news header

franca sozzani vogue fashion night out florence allyson arrigo fua jschool big

VOGUE PRESS CONFERENCE: AN INTERN'S PERSPECTIVE

By Allyson Arrigo
Photo by the author


As an intern, I had the journalistic experience of a lifetime.  Being able to attend and participate in the press conference for the upcoming Vogue Fashion’s Night Out led by Vogue Italia Editor-in-Chief Franca Sozzani and Florence Mayor Dario Nardella was an unforgettable experience.

 

On June 17th, I was in the pressroom of Palazzo Vecchio with some of Italy’s best journalists waiting for two major Italian figures, Sozzani from Vogue and Nardella representing the city of Florence. The press conference featured Vogue Fashion’s Night Out, an international fashion and charity event that will be held in Florence on September 17th.  An event of this caliber is held in fashion capitals all over the world every year. The non-profit event involves stores of all kinds from boutiques to couture to pop-up shops that stay open throughout the night along with events and concerts.  Celebrities, major public figures, and the local community shop and celebrate side by side and come together to celebrate the represented city’s unique sense of style.

While waiting for Sozzani and Nardella to commence, I was surrounded by men in Armani suits and women in Valentino heels speaking Italian so fast I could hardly keep up. Many journalists who had seats stood to catch a better glimpse of her and photographers rushed to the front of the room to catch a picture of the pair. As she sat down, Nardella spoke generously about Sozzani’s icon status and her persistent passion to push Florence’s position as the second fashion capital of Italy.

Sozzani sat and listened. Although Nardella spoke, all eyes were on the editor in chief. A petite, blonde, and blue-eyed woman who turned 65 this year, Sozzani is a fashion and beauty icon. When I finally got over the fact that I was in the same room as one of the most influential fashion magazine editors in the world, I saw that many journalists and guests felt the same as I did.

When it was Sozzani’s turn to speak, she swept the room away with the pride and passion demonstrated towards the event and the city of Florence. In naming Florence as the second fashion capital of Italy, the editor stressed the importance of cohesion between the local economy and community for the success of the upcoming event.

She went on to explain that the event donates all profits to charities and has many connections to various organizations. In the past, funds were donated to foundations such as Fondazione Tommasino Bacciotti, which raises awareness for children with brain cancer. For the 2015 event, Vogue Italia is donating to Differenza Donna, an organization that aids women and children subjected to violence.

When she finished with a smile, the audience erupted into concurring applause. As she stood from the table at the front of the pressroom, the audience swarmed around her with warm salutations and words of congratulations. Sozzani patiently and genuinely spoke with all who approached her. I must admit that I did freeze up for a second when brushing arms with her.

With a power team like Sozzani and Nardella, it is hard to imagine that this event could be anything but successful. When factoring in an influential city such as Florence and its diverse community, the event will be an unstoppable presence this September!

Want to participate in this event that unites fashion, social responsibility, and discovering Florence? Find out how and start the countdown at vfno2015.vogue.it.

Read more: Vogue Press Conference: An Intern's Perspective

A Wish Granted from a Fallen Soldier

j school cover grandfather wwii florence fua neeka matthews

Neeka Matthews reports from Piazza della Signoria, the same square that her grandfather wrote of in a 1930s diary prior to serving in WWII.

news header

j school big grandfather wwii florence fua neeka matthews

A WISH GRANTED FROM A FALLEN SOLDIER

By Neeka Matthews
Photo by the author


J School student Neeka Matthews returns to a Florentine square that was dear to her grandfather, a WWII soldier who kept a diary of his thoughts and stories before departing for war.

 

“24-8-1939: To estimate the time I have left in my home, before being stationed to Germany is uncertain. During my years growing up in Florence, I have come quite accustomed to writing my letters of adoration to those I love, in the heart of Piazza della Signoria. Sitting on the steps of Loggia dei Lanzi, I see the statue of Hercules and Cacus, created by Baccio Bandinelli, but today I see it in a new perspective. I hope to overcome this war with the feeling of victory, just as the Medici family felt as this statue symbolized their renewal to power after their return to exile. Piazza della Signoria was joyous when I was a kid. Prior to World War I, I would come sit in this very spot of Loggia dei Lanzi, watching as locals cross paths with old friends, ride their bikes to their next destination, scold their children as they had run off with pastries hidden under their coats, trying with all of their power to engulf the goods before they were caught. There was never a moment of irregularity, and it was perfectly chaotic. It has not been that way since the beginning of the first World War, but I hope one day it will return to its original bearings. May the Lord bless my family, and I, and give me the strength to end victoriously just as the statue of Hercules and Cacus depicts. If I were to never see Piazza della Signoria again, I pray that the offspring of my family will.”

Seventy-six years has passed since this letter was written, and it is finally my turn to seek the place in which my grandfather spent one of his last days in peace. From thinking of the details he described of Piazza della Signoria from when he was growing up, I had many curiosities as to whether or not his descriptions would contest to reality.

My first moments standing on the steps of Loggia dei Lanzi were surreal. I felt an instant connection to the grandfather I never met, and was mesmerized by the statue of Hercules and Cacus. I sat there, staring at this statue, trying to understand the anxiety, and unease my grandfather must have been feeling, but the statue suddenly transcended my thoughts into reconciliation.

How might one feel overlooking a place where harmony was intact, and then was no longer? How could my grandfather request the feeling of victory post war, in a place where his initial memories were overtaken by the negative effects of war and combat? I cannot ask my grandfather these questions, but can only take something away from the art and historical culture left in this place.

I observed the locals and tourists wandering through Piazza della Signoria, and strongly believe my grandfather would be comforted by the current routine. People from all over come to visit the statues, artwork, and history behind such a revolutionary area, but I believe they are doing so for the tranquility felt from connecting to those who stood there before them.

Read more: A Wish Granted from a Fallen Soldier

Community Relationships: One Seed at a Time

community gardens florence orti dipinti fua cover

Orti Dipinti is a community garden located in Borgo Pinti 76, in the center of Florence, a place where gardens give life to plants and relationships. J School students interview garden founder Giacomo Salizzoni.

news header

community gardens florence orti dipinti fua

COMMUNITY CULTIVATION: COMMUNITY RELATIONSHIPS, ONE SEED AT A TIME

By Kelsey Petron, Brian Luchsinger, Bonnie Swartz

Photo courtesy of FUA's SLD Department

Orti Dipinti is a community garden located in Borgo Pinti 76, in the center of Florence, a place where gardens give life to plants and relationships. FUA's community service and service learning activities collaborate with the organization. J School students Kelsey, Brian, and Bonnie spoke with founder Giacomo Salizzoni for a deeper look into the project.

Tucked away from the busy streets, a small oasis resides in Florence. Walking along Borgo Pinti is the hidden gem of Firenze, the Orti Dipinti community garden, where anyone and everyone is welcome. The wonderful people who make this garden possible aren’t just cultivating vegetation, they’re cultivating relationships.

 

Italy is a country that values connections as much as its deeply rooted history. “Since we are always connecting with many organizations, we can rely on their ways to spread the word around,” said Giacomo Salizzoni, garden founder. “Everyone uses the site as  a collector of images for events and social networks using their help to spread the word around.” Giacomo and the garden utilize their connections with local business to promote the work that they do. These organizations use social media to network pictures of the garden far and wide, to help inspire others and to show what can be accomplished in a seemingly urban landscape.

 

The desire and motivation to create the garden started five years ago with Giacomo Salizzoni and some friends. Giacomo was inspired by Liz Christy who started the first urban community garden in New York 40 years ago. After some intense exploration of Florence, Giacomo had struck gold. Right across from the Four Seasons Hotel was an old track that was no longer in use and collecting dirt. It was right on Borgo Pinti, in the city center. He still had work to do, and convincing the city government was no walk in the park, but in the end his preparation and passion won them over and thus Orti Dipinti (painted gardens) was born in September of 2013.

 

One of the main goals of the garden is to foster community development. Anyone in Florence can come to learn, touch, and even harvest the plants. Classes are provided for the avid botanist or simply a passerby can enjoy the greenery. It is rare to walk into the garden without passing a young family giving their dog a breath of much desired fresh air. It’s an opportunity for an environmental catharsis for many individuals who cannot otherwise find the opportunity in their urban lifestyle.

 

Also, it is a constructive hands-on learning experience for any local schools who want to use it. Giacomo is always willing to teach those who are willing to listen, no matter the age or country of origin.This offers the opportunity for visiting foreign students to engage actively with Florentine community members. The garden allows foreigners to learn about plants indigenous to the Mediterranean climate. It helps them step out of their comfort zones and experience new activities, all along being helped by the people of Florence.

 

When asked what his favorite aspect about the garden is, Salizzoni answered, “It is very difficult to say one specific thing, but the clay pot pitcher is one of the things I prefer. It’s guaranteed that this place will become very hot in the summer and the survival of the plants is the tip of the iceberg, so of course if the plants die then everything dies as a consequence…” Salizzoni struggles to specify one favorite item, but finds it easy to explain what he must do to ensure the longevity and flourishing of the garden.

 

His heavy involvement and acute attention to detail keeps the garden up and running. “But of course besides the technological side of things, the participants' involvement is the most exciting thing,” remembers Salizzoni after his in depth explanation of how to keep the garden functioning. He is committed to the garden wholeheartedly, and it shows.

However, every perk brings some challenges. Money can always become an issue when running any facility, “Funding the costs of the soil and plants is the easy part,” said Salizzoni. “In the future, we would like to build a greenhouse, fix the bathrooms, buy new tools, and build other structures that are needed in order to serve for the purposes of the garden. So that's the most difficult thing about this whole process.”

 

Everyone has their thing. For some, it might be painting, for others, running, but for Salizzoni it’s this garden. “I love it because it’s therapy,” he said. “Every day, I think I’m doing the right thing and getting connected with nature is therapy itself. Whether it’s a plant or an insect or just the soil and all the things involved - people, food, etc. - there's something that gives me a daily confirmation and it’s very healthy for the mind.” Salizzoni also hopes that the project has a positive impact on everyone that encounters the garden, and that it will spread throughout the Florentine community.

 

Read more: Community Relationships: One Seed at a Time


ALL MATERIAL AND CONTENT LOCATED ON THIS SITE MAY NOT BE REPRODUCED, MODIFIED OR USED WITHOUT PRIOR WRITTEN CONSENT OF FOUNDATION PALAZZI.

COPYRIGHT © 2018 - FOUNDATION PALAZZI - VILLA BRILLI PERI VIA GUELFA 85-114-116 / PALAZZO BOMBICCI GUICCIARDINI STROZZI CORSO TINTORI 21, FIRENZE

foot fbfoot t 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

   PRIVACY POLICY   

LEAVE us a MESSAGE:

E//mail

Message


Please validate you are a person

Privacy Consent
 I agree to FUA collecting my contact details through this form. All information is purely used to contact FUA staff and is not processed or resold.
This checkbox must be accepted to submit the form.
 
Please validate you are a person
Invalid Input