Negativo 1930

Yvonne De Rosa

Negativo 1930 by Yvonne De Rosa will be presented as part of the Hey! What’s Going On? exhibition at The Manuel Rivera-Ortiz Foundation at this year’s Rencontres d’ Arles Festival as part of the 50th Anniversary Edition.

The carousel of images above are the full set of the series, with 29 works on display at the Foundation. For full details see below.

About Yvonne De Rosa’s series Negativo 1930:

Based on a true story which happened in a small village in the south of Italy, the story focuses on Nina a young beautiful woman who fell in love with a fisherman called Peppino in the summer of 1930.

She fell pregnant and told Peppino hoping that he would propose marriage to avoid disappointing her father. His reaction was violent, and he strangled her to death.

During the time she was missing the police investigation revealed Nina’s pregnancy. Her body was found in the middle of the sea by a fisherman two weeks later, barely recognisable as her hair was gone due to the salt water. As her father repudiated his daughter’s body due to dishonour Nina was placed in a communal ossuary without a funeral.

Peppino was charged with murder, tried and found guilty.

The family never spoke about it, until Nina’s nine-year-old niece Anna, began having visions of a bald naked lady. Numerous masses and prayers were held to stop the visions and sightings, by Anna and several villagers also claiming to see her ghost, until one day they heard her say, "I am finally going away for a long trip."

Yvonne De Rosa met Anna whilst visiting Nina’s village. She showed her the locations of critical events and places Nina was ‘seen’. Negativo 1930 combines contemporary ‘spirit’ and ultra-violet photographs with images of the landscape and key locations alongside re-enactments and interpretations of the sordid story. De Rosa investigates themes of collective grief, guilt, and conjuring.

This photographic journey examines the apocryphal nature of a woman’s need to right the cultural wrongs of a community. De Rosa explores parallel perceptions and realities of femicide, faith, fact, and possibly fiction between the ‘real world’ and the ‘other side’ linked through the photographic ‘negative’.

All works are printed as ChromaLuxe High Definition Metal Prints.

They are ready to hang on the wall as they have a subframe on the back.

Size small 30cm x 45cm / Edition of 3 + 2AP’s

Price: From £1,100

Size large 70cm x 100cm / Edition of 2 + 2AP’s

Price: From £2,500

For further information or to purchase from this series please contact us at

Interact with our 3D virtual tour

To take the tour click here.

Screen Shot 2019-07-10 at 17.16.46.png

Note on the curation by Laura Noble

The images are arranged to resemble the engagement ring that never was. The central photograph is an infrared image of Nina’s house. Encircling the room from this central point De Rosa’s haunting black and white photographs form the band of this metaphorical ring. We see in these pictures the hope, violence, tragedy and subsequent reparations connecting Nina’s life and legacy.

Short video tour of the exhibition.