Skip to main content

The Beautiful Gene

The Beautiful Gene by Marina Rosso

The Beautiful Gene
Marina Rosso


136 pages
230×290 mm
ISBN: Not available


In September 2011 the world’s biggest sperm bank stopped accepting red haired donors for a period: demand for them was too low compared to the supply. After being scorned, persecuted and marginalized for centuries, could redheads now begin to be eliminated in a conspiracy of online questionnaires, aseptic clinics and frozen sperm?

Marina decided to act as a conservation geneticist who would classify the genetic variation of a species in the first step to preserve its diversity and components. She started by creating a matrix that would represent the red hair gene through 48 categories, each uniquely combining this feature with five more physical traits (gender, height, build, eye color and hair type). Then she set out on a journey looking for real people who could literally embody these categories. Marina took 204 portraits and later selected 47 of them. One category is still missing.

Marina Rosso, born in 1985 in Udine, Italy, is a fine art photographer.

Fabrica is a communications research centre, studio and school. They are based in Italy, work globally, and are an integral part of the Benetton Group. The organisation is built for the 21st century, and designed to address 21st century problems and opportunities. Their advantage is their diversity – of people, perspectives, formats and technologies. Fabrica works with partners on real world projects and actively seek out the new, the unknown, the emerging – as designers, as makers, as journalists and researchers.