Public Speaking

Pecha Kucha Pittsburgh - 20 x 20 slides

Volume 13 (Fall 2012)

Bruno Munari's "Fantasy"

In my first Pecha Kucha Pittsburgh, I explored Italian Designer Bruno Munari's creative process, as presented in his books "Fantasia" and "Design as art". Great lessons on how to think out of the box, yet focussing on feasibility. Bruno Munari's ability to achieve a truly imaginative outcome, while dealing with the industry standards, is the proof that there are some rules, to break the rules. Through his always-relevant description of Fantasy, Creativity, Invention and Imagination, Mr Munari taught us how to things so creative and simple, that nobody else would think of. 

Volume 14 (Spring 2013)

How to survive Italians

This Pecha Kucha was a trip in pure Italian culture, in which I shared what to do and what not to do if you are in Italy, or if you want to do it the Italian way. I personally believe this was my best Pecha Kucha to date, and I even want to believe that 'I saved some lives' !

Volume 15 (Fall 2013)

12 Months in the 'Burgh

In this presentation, I recapped my first year in the United States and -spoiler alert- it was easy to talk about a very nice experience. The event took place at the Pittsburgh Radio Station WESA/WYEP and our pieces were recorded! Mine can be seen online here

Volume 17 (Spring 2014)

Il Carnevale di Schignano

I was excited and honored to present my favorite 'Carnevale' in Italy: the one that takes place in Schignano d'Intelvi on Lake Como. A website in Italian only can be seen here.  While I took all the photos of the Pecha Kucha, I must share with you all the amazing photos by Mattia Vacca, collected in the book "A Winter's tale". Following is a little description from my presentation:

(...) The Carnevale happens every year around February or March, before the Catholic Lent. The dates would slightly change every year. In Schignano it is like a parade of traditional characters. The public would watch from the sides of the streets, as the parade move. It’s like a theater, without a fixed text. We just have two categories of characters: il Bello, the goodlooking, represents the rich people of the village. Rich families used to play this role, since the costumes were expensive. They have wonderful masks carved in walnut wood, in a light color. Some masks are 100 years old, but people still carve them nowadays. They are really heavy ! The Bello has a colorful hat, with silk laces and ribbons, and full of mock flowers. They have many details sewed to their costumes, like glazed or plastic jewels, little dolls and decorated umbrellas, to show their wealth. That’s what they do. On the other side, the Brutto is the ugly one, representing poor people, and in particular the manual laborers coming home from abroad, during the winter. That was very typical. Poor families played the Brutto. They usually have empty and broken luggage, to represent the fact that they had to leave the village for work.  The Brutto wears shreds and smelly furs of dead animals, and ugly wooden masks. The mask is really scary, and it is sometimes colored with red on the lips. Which is even more scarier. With a nasty smile. This one is my 6 years old cousin, Federico. My family is a family of Brutt! (...) 

Volume 22 (Fall 2015)

Built to resist - Design Lessons from my Grandma

This presentation is dedicated to my Grandma Margherita, and the precious design lessons she taught be during te years spent in her home on Lake Como, in Schignano d'Intelvi. Below a short selection from my talk, and some slides to go with it.

Her name is Margherita, which means “daisy”, and this is the first design lesson she taught me: say what you mean, mean what you say. Translated to design: do it right, now, without unnecessary BS. That’s her in 1928


Most important: do it strong! Built to resist! Because life is tough and there is no money to buy it/do it again. Please note the inaccessible path that Grandma, in her 80s, was walking with moccasins. She probably crushed the stones by herself. Bare hands.


But Grandma is also a poet: she sees beauty, and she appreciates it. In particular when it’s free, like the flowers in her garden. Those flowers are weeds, but she is not judgmental. She believe in the honesty of design.



She taught me about the true Italian design, the one from war time, that uses less and gives you more. She taught me how to be creative, when you should just be crying. She taught me to be and design strong stuff.


In order to do so, start by using few and simple ingredients. Like her lunches: butter with salt and one egg. Good design is about simplicity. The challenge is to use just what you need, in the right way. No space for treats of fake stuff.

© 2017 Bea Spolidoro