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Ornela Vorpsi was born in Tirana, Albania, in 1968. She left her home country at the age of 22 for Milan, where she lived for six years before moving on to Paris. She graduated from the Université Paris VIII and works as a writer, photographer, painter and video artist. Her art has been shown in numerous exhibitions in France, Italy, Montenegro, Albania and Belgium. In 2001, she published Nothing obvious, a volume of photographs. This was followed by two books of fiction, written in Italian but first published in French, Le pays où l'on ne meurt jamais (The country where one never dies) and Buvez du cacao Van Houten (Drink Van-Houten Cocoa). Among Vorpsi's distinctions are the renowned Italian literature prize Grinzane Cavour, the Premio Viareggio, the Premio Elio Vittorini, the Premio città di Vigevano and the Prix méditerranéen des Lycéens.