Soliera, “un paese ci vuole”. A story of looks, encounters and returns

by Dario Orlandi

[One needs a town, if only for the pleasure of leaving it.

A town means not being alone, knowing that in the people, the trees, the soil,
there is something of yourself, that even when you’re not there, stays and waits for you.] (Cesare Pavese, La luna e i falò)

One. “Un paese ci vuole”, it welcomes us, it listens to us.

The town listens to the voice of ten foreigners who have arrived in a village in the lower Modena area to tell their stories. Ten fragments in the mosaic of reality, to remind us that there isn’t one world, there are as many as the infinite number of its stories; and that in the meeting of unique glances lies the sense of being a community, The country welcomes the multitude of images, it is reflected in them, it integrates and strengthens them; it flourishes in the interweaving of its narratives. Looking, in order to rediscover.

© Luana Rigolli

Two. “Un paese ci vuole”, it calls us, it claims us.

The wounded town asks to find itself after a painful fall, to rediscover itself as a community. Foreigners are a precious gift in this mending operation: the normal becomes special in the eyes of those who observe without prejudice or habit. It is the genuine amazement of the child that continues in adults and that photography confirms with its paradoxical nature of a subjective object: exploring the inside to rebuild the outside. Looking, in order to return.

© Mattia Panunzio

Three. “Un paese ci vuole”, a town needs us.

One needs a town; that belonging that Pavese claimed in 1950 with the power of the hyperbate is urgent and that, two years later, moved Zavattini and Strand in search of (and not on) Luzzara, of the sense of community in a world in sudden and irreversible transformation. The same yearning that guided the ten foreigners in drafting their notes: make that country an embodiment of the need for community that gives rise to the human being. Looking, in order to be.

© Simone Mizzotti

Un paese ci vuole. Fotografie tra luoghi e persone del nostro territorio” is a collective exploration by Samantha Azzani, Cosimo Calabrese, Alessandra Carosi, Umberto Coa, Nicola Dipierro, Karim El Maktafi, Simone Mizzotti, Mattia Panunzio, Luana Rigolli, Irene Tondelli on the town of Soliera (Modena), heavily affected by the 2012 earthquake.

Simone Donati and Rocco Rorandelli coordinated the project, Giovanna Calvenzi narrated it, Fondazione Campori promoted it.
The 100 images, taken in the summer of 2019 by the photographers during their stay in the village, will be exhibited at Castello Campori, in Soliera, until March 5, 2020.


January 24, 2020


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