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Welcoming Remarks by Ambassador Maurizio Massari, Permanent Representative of Italy to the United Nations at the Opening of the Exhibit “More than us”




Distinguished Guests and Friends,

It is a pleasure to welcome you all to the UN Headquarters, where I am honored to inaugurate the inspiring art exhibit, “More Than Us”.

I am also honored to welcome the UN Under-Secretary-General for Global Communications Melissa Fleming. Melissa, thank you so much for joining us.

This exhibit is not merely a collection of stunning photographs; it is a visual testament to the strength, courage, and influence of modern women who are actively shaping their own communities.

Each image symbolizes our bold commitment to promoting women’s empowerment. The necessary preconditions for this are education, full and equal access to work opportunities, the promotion of entrepreneurship, and access to credit and resources to start and sustain businesses.

The entire project, a harmonious blend of art and activism, also encompasses some of the Sustainable Development Goals, showcasing the interdependence of our global efforts for a better future.

In particular, I invite you to look at the picture “A Strained Chorus”, which encapsulates many SDGs, such as No Poverty (SDG 1), Zero Hunger (SDG 2), Gender Equality (SDG 5), and Affordable and Clean Energy (SDG 7). This image captures an ambitious project dedicated to establishing a climate-smart region for agricultural cultivation. It aims to foster inclusive communities, especially for women and young people, through the sustainable growth of agricultural products.

In this context as well, the partnership between the public and private sectors is crucial. The collaborative dynamics showcased in this exhibit serve as a powerful example of how such alliances can act as a catalyst for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. Our work with Francesca Lavazza is a case in point and I thank her for this.

As we celebrate the Commission on the Status of Women 68, let us transform the narrative around women so that it truly reflects who they are – the real-life locomotives of the world!

In closing, let this exhibit be a call to action, an inspiration to champion gender equality, and a reminder that collaboration knows no borders. As we immerse ourselves in these powerful images, let us pledge to carry the torch of change forward, recognizing that our actions today will impact the world of tomorrow.

Quoting the Italian Nobel Prize winner, Rita Levi Montalcini, “Women have always had to struggle twice as much. They have always had to carry two weights – the private and the social. Women, are the backbone of societies!” (free translation)

Thank you.