QPAC and Museum of Brisbane present

Impossible Conversations

2018 QPAC International Series

Inspired by Vanity Fair’s bitingly satirical 1930s series Impossible Interviews, this project brings together nine Brisbane residents to imagine a conversation they would like to have with a chosen figure from Italian history.

Real people, historical figures, imagined dialogues

An amazing mix of historical figures were selected to converse with from fields including art, science, religion and politics. Some, like infamous Casanova defy categorisation.

Individually each of these figures led extraordinary lives and come together here for the first time, woven with the lives and imaginations of these nine Brisbane residents to create a sweeping overview of the richness and impact of Italian culture across centuries.

Dominique Rizzo

with Saint Agatha, the saint of Sicily

Massimo Ficca

with poet Dante Alighieri

Kira Boardman

with painter and architect Giorgio Vasari

Sara Capacci

with astronomer and scientist Galileo Galilei

Jacqueline Bawtree

with Baroque painter Artemisia Gentileschi

Liana Cantarutti

with adventurer and author Giacomo Casanova

Marie Fitzgibbon

with film and stage actress Giulietta Masina

Canio Muscillo

with his Nonno Michele Romano

Mihai Romanciuc

with politician, journalist and activist Marco Pannella



Experience them all together

Impossible Conversations features in the QPAC Tunnel now through until 10 December 2018.

Also visit Sam Cranstoun: Impossible Conversations at Museum of Brisbane to see Sam Cranstoun’s original artworks.


Watch a discussion with the creative team

  • Host: Rebecca Lamoin
  • Visual artist: Sam Cranstoun
  • Writer: Mary-Rose MacColl
  • Photographer: Jacqueline Bawtree

Conversation is a meeting of minds with different memories and habits. When minds meet, they don’t just exchange facts: they transform them, reshape them, draw different implications from them, engage in new trains of thought. Conversation doesn’t just reshuffle the cards: it creates new cards.

Theodore Zeldin

Acknowledgement of Traditional Owners

We pay our respects to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander ancestors of this land, their spirits and their legacy. The foundations laid by these ancestors - our First Nations Peoples - gives strength, inspiration and courage to current and future generations, both Indigenous and non-Indigenous, towards creating a better Queensland.

Queensland Government’s RAP Acknowledgment of Country