The City of Florence, in collaboration with the Museo Novecento and the Conference of Democratic Women of Tuscany, is delivering a case filled with locks of hair to the Iranian Embassy in Rome, in a symbolic gesture of protest. This comes after the protests of Iranian women have resulted in a solidarity movement across Italy, including in Florence. Participants deposited their locks into a box that was left in the external part of the Museo Novecento on October 2.
With this symbolic gesture, three organizations are joining an initiative that was promoted by the Milan Triennale and recreated by the MAXXI in Rome. It stems from a desire to stand in solidarity with the peaceful struggle of Iranian women, following the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini, who was arrested for not wearing her hijab according to government standards. The protests that ensued in Iran have been met with violence, leading to the death of 20-year-old Hadis Najafi, who has since become a symbol of dissent. The gesture of cutting off locks of hair was started by brave Iranian women in city squares and has since spread across the world as people continue to protest the suppression of women’s rights and human rights in Iran.
City councillor for rights and equal opportunities, Benedetta Albanese, said, “We are sending all the strands of hair that both women and men have cut here in Florence as a sign of solidarity with the Iranian people, along with a letter in which we invite everyone to listen to our appeal for the respect of human rights. Florence, a free and open city, stands alongside women across the world in the battle for the recognition of rights and freedoms, against all repression and violence. We are sending the locks collected at the Museo Novecento in the same week as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, which falls on November 25.”