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Play Inspired By Life Of Renaissance Painter Lavinia Fontana Part Of 365 Women
This Marks Playwright's fourth outing with company committed to women's stories
By: Fearless Ink
Schegulla, an internationally-
Her plays have been produced in New York, Los Angeles, London, Edinburgh, and Australia. The Scotsman named her play "Scrying" about women and suicide a "Pick of the Day" out of 1280 plays during her last foray to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.
"History is created by people doing interesting things," says Schegulla. "It's messy, it's complicated, it's fascinating. I've been lucky enough to come across some intriguing stories that aren't commonly known. It's thrilling to do the research, pick one of the events in each woman's life, and write a play about it. Of course, it's often hard to pick just one!"
Her interest in Lavinia Fontana came about by accident. "I missed the Metropolitan Museum of Art," the former New Yorker admits. "I was leafing through a book of artists I got out of the library, and one her paintings caught my attention. I've always been interested in the city of Bologna and its history. When I discovered that Lavinia's father was a painter and her mother's family ran a successful publishing house -- and remember, publishing was a fairly new industry in the 1500s -- and, on top of all of that, Lavinia was on one of the first women painters to compete with men for commissions, I knew I wanted to learn more about her and write about her. When 365 Women invited me back this year, I said this was the woman whose story I wanted to present, and they said yes!"
Schegulla, a full-time writer who publishes under a half a dozen names in fiction and non-fiction, as well as creating marketing and media campaigns for artists, authors, and non-profits in whose mission she believes, has a little less than a year to complete the play. She figures a little less than five months immersing herself in Renaissance art, literature, and history, and then a little under six months to write the play. This, while juggling the myriad of projects in various formats that's the life of an artist.
Will she travel to Bologna to do research on site? "If I get a grant," she laughs. "And you can bet I'm researching those!"
For more information on Schegulla's work, you can follow her blog on the writing life, Ink in My Coffee: http://devonellington.wordpress.com, or her websites www.devonellingtonwork.com and www.fearlessink.com.