Blog

Updates and work in progress

5 August, 2018

Harvest Competition in Terranova di Pollino

One of the missing pieces from the mosaic I am trying to put together on wheat festivals in Basilicata has to do with production, since in order to make the offerings I photographed at rituals and processions during the past years one needs wheat spikes that are harvested by hand. While wheat is farmed in…

18 August, 2017

San Rocco in San Giorgio Lucano

The presence of wheat offerings at the San Rocco procession in San Giorgio Lucano (MT) sends my memory back to the black and white photographs by Franco Pinna, portraying the harvest ritual that Italian ethnologist Ernesto De Martino had asked to re-enact for his research in this same village in 1959. Pinna’s images and De…

16 August, 2017

San Rocco in San Paolo Albanese

I visited the festival for San Rocco in San Paolo Albanese (PZ) for the first time in 2004. I witnessed for the first time the dances with the wheat sheaves and sickles the following year, shooting with my first digital camera. I meet some of the protagonists of that day 12 years later, as one…

6 August, 2017

Madonna di Costantinopoli in Noepoli

The village of Noepoli has an ancient and fascinating history as a cultural centre for Greek Basilian monks in the early middle ages and later as the capital of a local fief. Unlike many of the neighbouring villages where the Virgin protecting the inhabitants is in the shape of a statue, in Noepoli the procession…

5 August, 2017

Madonna del Piano in Episcopia

The festival for the Madonna del Piano in Episcopia (PZ) is part of a constellation of rituals that involve parading offerings made of wheat spikes, along the valleys of the Southern Italian rivers Sinni and Sarmento. In Episcopia on August the 5th a wooden statue of the Virgin Mary is carried from a countryside monastery…

19 July, 2017

Storie Migranti in Scena

One of my best friends is a theatre director and when I was still living in Milan, Italy, I happened to shoot his end-of-the-year plays at the Civica Scuola di Teatro Scuola Paolo Grassi. One of his latest works is the direction of two plays out of the five short pieces that make up Storie…

9 August, 2016

Madonna del Carmine in Pedali di Viggianello

The second harvest ritual procession I photographed in 2016 takes place in the heart of the Pollino national park, in the lush valley of the river Mercure. On 19 August in the community of Pedali, part of the village of Viggianello (PZ), the festival is again in honour of the Virgin, the Madonna del Carmine….