Editorial #13 / June 2017
URBAN SECRET GARDEN
Text and photos by Lia Nalbantidou
Urban Secret Garden (2016) is a trilogy book of photographs.
The photography project consists of three chapters - separate books:
“Urban Secret Garden - why the night”
“Urban Secret Garden - mediterranean air”
“Urban Secret Garden - the Ano Poli suite”
Photographing started in 2010, as an improvisation, in the course of aimless early morning walks
in the city and the outskirts of Thessaloniki. I reflected on the floral fabric motifs of my childhood in the women’s prêt-a-porter family business, a small-scale clothing industry established in the 70’s. Year 2010, was the foggy beginning of the socioeconomic crisis in Greece. Through photographing, I realized the rapid deindustrialisation that was talking place in the city
and its surroundings. Walking about, I stumbled upon abandoned buildings, large-scale warehouses, small-scale hovels, closed-down enterprises, homelessness - all human wounds. In the summer of 2014, my walks brought me to “Ano Poli”(Upper City), where my mother lived as a young woman. Digging through vintage photographs of her youth I began to unravel the “Urban Secret Garden” photographic narrative.
The book consists of 87 photographs, contemporary shots and vintage photographs from the 50’s, 60’s and 80’s. It is a book about wandering, loss, memory and the search for home. The location is the outdoors of an average mediterranean city. …That’s where I chase after the flowery dresses, among the repeated patterns and the detailed washing instructions. That’s where I observe the seams connecting the pieces into a single garment that contains us… “The Seams” by Lia Nalbantidou & Sila Zamani.
The film, the lens, contemporary and vintage prints, the needle, the thread, the white linen, the seams, the words, are all important components of this book object.
Editorial #12 / May 2017
Text and photos by Lily Zoumpouli
Capturing glances of the moments that passed us by, in times when we were maybe too young to realise that they weren’t there to stay until eternity would have torn us apart. But still old enough to know they were worth noticing. The need for a way of connecting through a medium with my own feelings and surroundings became the catalyst of this works existence. Each photograph has a background story that carries on its shoulders the reason for its own memory. The distance that separates us from our subject is the one that needs to be walked, in order to find the reflection of our inner selves and others combined into one image, forming a mixture of selves. A connection being conceived within a captivating atmosphere that was inspired by the desire of transferring into another reality, forming a duality through the final outcome of the photograph. The intense element of nude is depicting the return to an innocent comfort of being bare naked, but mostly of being pure towards yourself and towards the observer- displaying a self and its shadows. Every so often there are staged moments representing a personal dive within every part that belongs to a past or a present, trying to be revealed through a newborn subject so to keep on recreating itself. An autobiographical documentary combined with allegorical aspects give a sense of spontaneity along with the subconscious, and slowly take over during the process of discovering a world out and within our own individuality.
Editorial #11 / May 2017
Text and photos by Serena Vittorini
"When an element of the external world becomes a demiurgic instrument and a mood enhancer, something unexpected happens. The assonance caused by this meeting leads to an extremely intimate sphere of the subject, which perhaps refers to something "other. It alludes to a mysticism that evokes the correlation between the tangible and the spiritual world."
We are used to measure ourselves against ourselves and the space around us with the knowledge that something outside our skin that can not be controlled happens, something which is beyond our forecasts. You try to be prepared, presentable, able to react quickly, with strength and intelligence to stimuli from the world outside of us. Indeed, the delicate boundary between us and the world is the key topic of our whole existence. Reducing everything to a question of numbers, the five senses are compared with the four elements and with the passage of time: all the time we interpret the world around us, nature and the community with these few parameters, and each time we are gripped by the mysterious question. I feel, see, smell, touch, taste, and so I think, but what am I really? I build an idea of the world, but who will tell myself? Following the return to my hometown, L'Aquila, after an absence of eight years, I tried to re-establish a contact with those who are my roots, trying to tell through these and to interpret the sensations arising from my daily experiences.
The result is a surreal, elusive, mysterious, terrifying atmosphere.
Editorial #10 / May 2017
13 IV 1941
Text and photos by Melissa Carnemolla
There was once Marina di Ragusa, a small village on the South-East coast of Sicily, mostly inhabited by fishermen. I belong there, where simple and modest people were used to live in a monotonous and also unpredictable way. Like the sea itself. This story doesn't come from it, though. In June 1940, the calm of the town was upset by the beginning of World War II. People got soon used to take shelter from the bombardments as well as their flying area became the headquarter of the air military operations. On April 13th, 1941, at 10.30am, a German military plane crushed, without any reasons, on Marina di Ragusa. It was the Easter-day and it happened not far away from the full Church where the Mass was being celebrated. The plane, geared by bombs, destructed a wide area of the village. Five German soldiers as well as five inhabitants died. Amongst them, there were two children, both my relatives: the sister of my grandmother and the sister of my grandaddy. My parents were both at Church. I'm 24 years old by now. So many questions 'bombard' my mind on what would have been happened in other circumstances. What, if it hasn't been the Easter-day therefore my grandparents would have been at that same house? Well – I couldn't be here to tell this story. But I could. Should I thank the destiny or the Lord? There are no answers for certain questions. Like the meaning of life itself. So I have tried to shape the emptiness into symbols – the only ones we can be sure of.
Editorial #9 / April 2017
Text and photos by Margherita Villani
Initiate to the doubt,
again to uncertainity.
Beging a new,
That’s how, my own poetry, starts me thinking about my new beginning relationship. First serious. I keep in my mind the time when I said to him: “Hey! I want to make a project about you”. The answer was “I’m not quite interesting. Don’t do that”. Feelings of doubt starts crowd into my mind “why he don’t want to? he is not sure about what is going on? I’m the only one who cares?”. So, hiding from him, I started to do the project that I strongly felt in my chest, that i want to do, and I begun to explore my feeling with analog photography that gave me the possibility to have enough time to think about what I shotted and how it could look like. I’ve found all my doubts in those pictures and, like a drugs, I was totally addicted to that feeling. So I keep going, keep searching for something that remind me, in nature and into the landscapes that i use to look at, those kind of sensation. I’ve spent lot of time just looking around me but everytime I was coming back to the same place, take a picture of that and documented its transformation, as i was changing. This project, those pictures, are my intimate exploration of doubts that all of as have to pass through, once, in our life. Can you feel, hided into the images, you doubts and the faces that they have?
Editorial #8 / April 2017
Text and photos by Pierre-Marie Drapeau-Martin
The island of A. is a free adaptation from Elsa Morante's The Island of Arturo (Memoirs of a Teenager).
On this wild and mysterious Italian island, Arturo returns to his boyhood. In my turn, echoing this fictional autobiography, I explore these memories against the real, I search for the signs from the novel in the Mediterranean aera.
Impressed by the moods and the sensations of Arturo, by their variety and their variations, I use several photographic techniques to translate his trouble, his play and his melancholy face to face with reality.
What interests me is located in the gaps : between the mythical projections of the narrator and what really is, between his past and what lies on the horizon, between the writing experience of Elsa Morante and my own experience of reader.
To dive in these adventures in the middle of nature, both sentimental and family affairs, amounts to immerse in a flow of consciousness finally revealed to itself, and which opens onto the world.
Theses images were took between Italy, Greece and Turkey.
Editorial #7 / March 2017
ALLA RICERCA DELLE COLONNE D'ERCOLE
Text and photos by Duae
The thirst for knowledge, the search for new worlds to discover, of what is unknown and full of dangers, pushed the man to go beyond also "The Pillars of Hercules," the insurmountable limit of the land known, considered by the ancients the end of inhabited world. << … venimmo a quella foce stretta dov' Ercule segnò li suoi riguardi…>> About The Pillars of Hercules in ancient, with rowboats and sailing, no one passed by the strait, but the explorers and sailors were always thrown back in the Mediterranean currents, waves and wind. Hercules was the first to pass it, appointed the columns with his name, when he crossed the straits to go to kidnap the golden apples kept in an Atlantic island closely guarded by Atlanta, but he was a God of mythology classic. The Iberians and the Libyans claimed that the columns were two rocks that closed the passage of the ships, or those today Gedeira / Cadiz, and then Dicearco, Eratosthenes and most Greeks localized columns in the Strait of Gibraltar. Every people has given its version on the boundaries than what was conceived in antiquity as the inhabited earth and the end of this: with regard to shipments, nobody can supporting the groundlessness or probability. Indeed the man has always needed to establish boundaries. It is also likely that the time consumes the signals placed at boundary and the names and designations: and finally the geographic representations. The Pillars of Hercules become more than a defined place and a geographical boundary, a western border between known and unknown that represents the fictional map of the Mediterranean and at the same time a psychological and ethics map, where everything is much less defined and stable. This research is a first chapter of the extreme limit, of the hunger for knowledge that is behind the creation of the first maps, and we're going to explore guided by myths, legends, to discover the area. We believe the border places as something that can be constantly rewritten and reinvented for porosity that characterizes them: the concept of boundary has always been one of the tools that the man uses to master the reality, show of force and power. The research of The Pillars of Hercules is a real journey that goes to the imaginary search for this historical border, shaped by mythic narratives, legends and historical. We will draw a new map of the area, through an exploration of these territories that have represented the boundary between known and unknown. We will use photographic means as a place that makes it even more complex the issues, because being a medium that depends on the external reality and yet it creates its own, it allows us to go in search of mysterious coincidences and chance. The walk will be the synaesthetic relationship that will allow us to perceive these territories to 360 degrees including the dimensions of time and space. These places will be open spaces, undefined, and will unveil new landscapes on the Mediterranean: this sea which is unifying principle and the separator, the symbol of the becoming for its float unstoppable, like the movement of time that has become history.
Editorial #6 / March 2017
Text and photos by Giulia Parlato
The concept of Isola originated from an unresolved question I have been asking myself for the past three years; about home and the impossibility of finding one. The 'photographic act' has always been a way to isolate myself and feel at home within my images. This sort of inner dislocation I reach while I photograph, brought me to the creation of a fictitious island, which almost became a symbolic dwelling.
When I started to construct a critical thought around this project, I knew it had to be about Sicily, depicted as a surreal and arcane place and strongly linked to its myths. Throughout the development of my work, this partially changed and focusing on my origins became mostly a familiar and personal way of articulating a discourse on a more broad and complex concept.
My journey of twenty-five days through the mediterranean sea, started after a rereading of Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa's Lighea and Homer's Odyssey, focusing particularly on Ulysses adventures across the south of Italy. When I decided to plan my own route, I was ultimately inspired by the tales my father used to tell me. All of these stories were based on Ferdinandea, which was a small Sicilian island that rose from the water in 1831 and then disappeared again underwater (to lie just below the surface) in 1832.
In winter, the Sicilian landscape shifts from being a desirable tourist destination, to a desert and silent scene.
The desolation of Sicily and the small island which surround it made me focus on their idyllic appearance. Meditating on the primitive uses of the cave, which are extremely common throughout the island group, I though of each cavern as a dwelling in its purest and simplest structure; a contained space, which is possible to enter and which recalls the ideal form of the shelter.
By exploring this territory, I was allured by the idea of enclosure in the shapes of igneous rocks and cliffs, encompassing the traveller and welcoming him to stay. The symbology of the cave, antechamber of an hidden world, is a central theme of my research. The cave here is seen as an intricate space, similar to the one of the human viscera, as well as a place where a reconnection with Mother Earth and our original state of humanity is possibile.
Isola formed around the idea of narrating, like in a travel journal, a fictional voyage from an adventurer's perspective; from approaching an imaginary island to venturing into its core.
Celebrating the beauty of the classical forms, the nude figures in the landscape evoke a sense of a dreamlike dimension, in which the viewer is invited to immerse themselves. Concentrating the narrative more on their gestures, rather than their identity, my subjects are faceless islanders, accompanying foreigners through their visit.
The objects I have collected throughout the making of my work, have been taken out of their original context and photographed individually, against a simple black background. This enhances their evocative power and shifts the focus onto their symbolic value. As fragments of an ended voyage, the objects almost become 'organs' of the island itself, organic pieces that have been secretly removed from it.
The house model I have made, invites one to enter this fictional dimension, in which the journey starts and in which even the scale of each object appears ambiguously unclear.
Isola is not a specific place and it does not belong to a specific time. Impenetrable, it exists only in images.
Editorial #5 / February 2017
Text and photos by Ambre Peyrotty
Setting out. Setting out to rediscover one's traces – to feel alive. Setting out to bare one's soul and at long last unleash the burning desire to create. Setting out on a journey of self-reinvention. This poetic approach yields a new perspective on the world, and the resulting psychological state becomes a boundless gateway to artistic creation.
My vision of the world is altered as I roam. It becomes a world populated by strange creatures, fantastic lights and decisive moments in which the images come over me in waves, filling my eyes. The lights, the moments and the situations are reduced to a mixture of life and death the very instant I lean before my subject and the image materializes like a painting in the haze. We bow politely, the ambient noise gives way to silence, and it’s as if time stands still.
Today’s world is always on the go. In our haste, we tend to rush our reflections, our gestures and our movements. How can we slow this tendency? Perhaps simply by creating images with strength and determination – images that remain behind, forever imprinted in our memories. My photos undoubtedly speak of me – but they speak of others, as well. So it is that in the context of my own wanderings, I approach the universe in the broadest possible sense. I immerse myself in the world and record contemporary moments, which then serve as a sort of mouthpiece for society. And despite this strange and sometimes disconcerting universe, what remains with us is the feeling.
Editorial #4 / February 2017
NON TI SCORDAR DI ME
Text and photos by Daniele Pasci
The energy industry of the Sardinia - an island in the South-West of Italy - has grown
promising great wealth and prosperity, but in past few years, this has led to the
disappearance of a natural way of life, leaving the people to live suspended, between past and future values.
Everything began in 2011 when the company that operates in the industrial area of
Sarroch,deposit a exploratory drilling request searching for a natural gas field in the Arborea area.
On one side Arborea, the flagship of the food farm industry in Sardinia, on the other Sarroch, which hosts the largest oil rafinery in the Meditteranean area, both are waiting answers on what will happen in their lands.
For the whole island, it is a particular situation of uncertainty which would lead to radical changes in people's lives; a passing phase in which tensions, reflections and life expectancy are concentrated.
“Non ti scordar di me” (meaning: 'Don't forget about me') it's a story about identity and pride, about suspension and fear; fear to change identity.
All pictures are taken from 2013 to 2015, between Arborea (OR) and Sarroch (CA), Sardinia, Italy.
Editorial #3 / January 2017
HOW FAR NOW?
Osas Gomez Uwadia
Project coordinated by
Ilaria Crosta & Niccolò Hébel
Before entering the boat they gave us precise instructions; we had to cut our nails, remove objects and anything that could deflate the boat (earrings, Rings, belts…).
We were almost one hundred and thirty in it, crammed like sardines, actually, I think sardines are more comfortable.
We started the night in this vast sea, going in the deep nothing, then we start to see only water, no more lands.
After hours, or days, desperate, we saw one boat with the flag of Germany, our agitation overturned the boat, we fell in the water, some did not know how to swim and died, others clung to those who knew. The guards saved us. We sang to thank God, we did not any more think of arriving there, but we held out and we arrived in Italy.
This is the last journey of Lucky, Ahmed, Davidson, Victor, Vincent, Osas, Star Boy, John, Bright, Gabriel, A.B., Felix, Kelly, Rael, Timothy, Destiny and many others…
Editorial #2 / November 2016
APPOINTMENT IN THE COSMOS
Sogno una luna piatta.
Precipita nel lago di Pilato.
E' una foglia bianca.
Non vedo l’albero.
This is an ongoing personal project without an immediately perceivable theme, yet a strong sense of the spiritual, magical and mysterious. An interior perception of landscape is explored, beyond the physical outdoors, through spaces of other celestial dimensions. The sense of reality is obscured through an abstraction of distance, space and scale. Micro and macro systems are explored and contrasted. There are recurring elements of black holes and white lights as a means of tracing the emotions of personal dreamscapes and conceived imaginations.
Editorial #1 / August 2016
Text and photos by Stefano Marchionini
The images of natural and manufactured objects, observed and taken out of context, as well as those of contemplative landscapes and mysterious portraits intend to convey the passing of time and a sense of ennui.
A dialogue is established between moments and places that aren't otherwise connected with each other, thus opening interpretation to new meanings.
Te genesis of this photographic series coincides with certain personal events, such as moving to the South of France, after having lived in Paris for four years, and coping with a decision that wasn't entirely mine.
However, while real life takes its own course there is a place where creation is free to explore what is happening without self-judgement and, therefore, taking pictures in these new surroundings have become a way to express part of my subconscious.