Updated: Jul 21, 2021
My work is a process started in 2013 that led me to understand myself and others; a process of self-understanding and knowledge as reflected in the other.
Only action without thoughts interfering with decisions, a revelation of love for myself.
"Action" seen as a responsibility, leap into the void, the un-known unlimited, which is light; salvation linked to curiosity, open-mindedness, trust in others, faith in oneself, which is nothing other than a kind of harmony with life and the people around us.
The certainty of following one's intuition to access higher levels of consciousness, that ability to question (after having recognised them) the old mental, emotional, psychological, behavioral patterns that belonged to me and that still belong to me ... those useless weights, negative thoughts, fears and insecurities that made me feel bad ... that ‘image’ of myself that I had built, out of desperation to be accepted, in the first place by my parents, then by friends and by the outside world that were nothing other than me.
Meeting people online, the 'perfect strangers' to let go completely, was the most constructive experience of my life.
I felt and still feel today as an explorer of 'human existence' accompanied by my best friend: the camera. Meeting them in the places and times set by them and photographing them as they wanted to be photographed, without having the slightest doubt of being in "danger", in a city like London, had become my cure.
I had decided to be open, curious, positive, with a great desire to know each other; I wanted to spend time together, share profound conversations about life and secrets never told, that made me alive and involved in their depth but also in mine.
It was like a game, the game that I often played as a child, when I ventured for abandoned farms in the arid but productive Puglia, with my purple coloured bicycle, hoping to meet unknown ghosts to talk to. And I talked to them really thinking that those imaginary beings existed in reality.
I imagined their human forms ... and I saw them at the window, waiting for me.
But inside me, I knew that with my imagination I could create a meeting point with the immensity of existence and feel myself in the company of the unknown.
Those imaginary and real beings kept me company at the same time.
Sometimes I was afraid. I watched them watching me motionless from the window, and I couldn't enter their doors. Other times I walked bravely among abandoned buildings in search of someone to reassure me. And I found that that person was always myself.
Today I write is 2019.
More than 40 years have passed and only now that I look back I understand why I built my body of work: 4 photographic projects, 2 videos and 4 photography books. I only acted to heal my pain, to switch on a light in the dark, and to see who I really am, to accept me, love me and become a stronger person.
And photography was that door into which I entered to cure myself.
Take care of what? ... you will ask.
My work concerns humanity, the individual, the responsibility as a starting point for building a better world.
The individual alone finds hard to know himself.
Instead of entering the hidden depths of himself, he is busy knowing everything that is external to him and is convinced that he knows more than the other.
He separates his inner world from his external world and in this way he sees everything separated from him. There is a lack of humility in ‘human beings’ and the arrogance of considering ourselves a superior beings in the existence of which we are part and in the nature that hosts us.
Although we share the same 'breath of life' with animals, we have a unique peculiarity.
We are able to think and reason but most of us do not, perhaps out of laziness, perhaps out of fear of the dark and cowardice, perhaps in order not to lose that little 'certainty' that we have built with effort over time, and to which we are attached as of leeches convinced that without 'her' life is over.
The human being therefore as a limitation or imitation.
Thoughts that go through our mind and that we don't observe. The eternal accusation towards the other, "the different" and "the external world" without understanding that we are the only ones responsible for our life, and that the external world is nothing but our reflection. The unexpressed emotions that suffocate us, but then expressed make us explode creating unbearable and destructive situations.
What is created is undoubtedly what one is.
But who am I? Have you ever asked yourself?
Obviously I cannot help but talk about my personal experience, since it is the only one I know, having lived it. Crossing through different doors and undergoing different processes of spiritual, physical, emotional and mental knowledge and evolution, I understood what made me unhappy.
Everything started from my mind. I had obsessions. The same destructive thoughts were so deeply rooted in my head that they repeated themselves daily, minute by minute, causing me a strong anxiety and inability to live freely.
Obsession or obsessive thinking is a psychopathological phenomenon which consists of a fixed idea or a mental representation accompanied by an anxiety-induced experience and which the subject cannot control even though he is aware of it. It is a continuous thought that recurs and persists despite the efforts to ignore or eliminate it.
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One day I asked my yoga instructor what to do to stop the negative thoughts of my mind, precisely my obsessions.
His answer surprised me.
You have to work on the breath - he told me.
Breath - I thought.
I ran home and started looking for information on Internet.
"If you can master your breath you will become a master of your emotions."
Have you ever observed how breathing changes with changing emotions?
When you're angry, you breathe in a certain way; try to observe how you breathe when you are angry and then, when you feel angry, try to breathe differently: you won't be able to get angry. You can only get angry with a particular breath.
When you're in love, watch your breath: its rhythm, the music, the harmony.
If that harmony is disturbed, love will fade.
Or, create that harmony and love will appear.
If you can master your own breathing - and it's a profound science - you will become a master of your emotions. If you do not try to understand and use your respiratory system, you will not be able to enter meditation. Breathing is the bridge that links your conscious part with the unconscious. The unconscious continues to change the rhythm of your breathing, so if you become aware of this rhythm and its continuous changes, you can acquire awareness of your unconscious roots, of how the unconscious operates.
That fascinated me.
The only answer was "working with meditation".
I looked for a meditation course in London, at the Buddhist centre in Roman Road.
I started doing meditation before lunch, 3 times a week.
The sessions lasted 55 minutes. At first the only thing I could do was "travel with imagination".
I created absurd stories in my mind. But I didn't give up. I let it float. I became aware of my vivid fantasy.
Then gradually with the passing of the months, and of the years, I managed to observe more carefully my breath and those obsessions, trying to silence my mind, and I managed to got rid partially of those heavy and thinking shells that I thought I didn't have, for they had become so one with me that I thought I did not possess them ... exactly like an onion, which is one and only, but formed of layers and substrates ... just like those thin layers that make up most of the physical, mental, emotional 'structure' of human beings and that prevent us from being, if not properly observed and recognised, completely happy.
Many of these layers, we have unconsciously built over the years, others have been given to us by those who came into close contact with us, during our lifetime.
First of all the people who were our parents.
They unconsciously gave us memories already when they guarded us as a fetus inside them, and without us wanting to have, passed on their layers of fears, prejudices, anxieties, feelings of guilt, their unresolved chains ... their thoughts, at that moment in their lives.
I don't remember if I asked for wanting to be born, or if in my "eternal wandering" I need this life to understand and elevate myself.
How did your mother conceive you? Was she happy? Did she want you? Was she worried? Did she want to get rid of you? Did she pamper you? Caressed you? Did she love you? Did she see you as the most beautiful thing in the world? Or was she there to judge you? To choke you?
Who was your mother?
And your father? Did he support you? Did he love you? Did you talk to him freely? Was he close to you in your dark moments? Did he advise or scold you? Did he beat you?
Who was your father?
I always ask myself, every day; who are my parents, my sister, my brothers or my friends.
Of course they gave me life, the most beautiful miracle, but then?
Sometimes they have confused us during our growth with words that we didn't want to hear or that we didn't understand at that time (because we weren't aware) but we listened.
Our ears have been and are always open ... without knowing it, we stored information.
Some parents, those capable of communicating with their heart and more sensitive, have given great comfort and help to their children, helping them to face the difficulties along the way of their life.
Others have done the opposite. They gave hatred, thinking of doing good.
And we found ourselves next to them, unwittingly, perhaps in their most difficult moments, when unhappiness and pain were present and forgetting us (children) made us grow in their pain and rejection, in the fear of not being accepted, causing our self-esteem to collapse and feeling inadequate to love.
Because it is known that if a mother or father did not love their child authentically, did not hold him in their arms, did not listen to him, encouraged and helped him to face his darkest moments, it is unlikely that ‘that child’ will grow up with a good self-esteem, strength and pride in this existence.
No, I'm not negative. Most people, when they hear me talking say that I am negative.
I am perhaps very intense, profound, real.
I asked myself many questions in life and gave myself endless answers.
Just because I wanted to understand.
I guess it wasn't their fault. They were not awake, they were still sleeping. Perhaps they grew up in more unhealthy environments than ours, with parents more incomprehensible than them. Maybe they were not aware of their chains.
Then we had contact with our brothers and sisters with whom we met and clashed along the path of life. With some of them we've established wonderful relationships and with other infinite misunderstandings without being able to understand each other emotionally.
Born in the same family, same blood, but with different degrees of perception.
Jealousies, inferiority complexes, unhealthy thoughts that do not exist in reality (… you have more than me, I have less than you ... ) but that occupy the mediocre minds of those who are ignorant about themselves. And you can't do anything about it, you can't change the other.
The only thing you can do is change yourself and if you can't, isolate yourself and don't see them anymore.
But they are your brothers and sisters ... ! - you will tell me.
Yes, they are! ... but I assure you, sometimes, it's better to lose some people. If you are not on the same evolutionary path, words are of no use. They are long-bladed swords that cut and wound in blood.
To what extent do I want to be hurt now that I love myself?
At other times the relationships between brothers and sisters are full of love and help, and you are bound to them by a profound respect. There is communication, we accept ourselves for what we are and we understand each other because of love.
This beautiful word that we often use - L O V E - but what is Love?
Then there are friends. This is a strange category.
There are the real ones that will always remain by your side (one or two people max) and the non-real ones that will leave you in the moment of need.
Let's not forget about the boyfriends and girlfriends you think you are madly in love with, who behind the fateful little but huge word - 'I love you' - that makes you melt like an ice cream, they want to possess you with their jealousies and absurd requests ... those who never leave you free to be yourself, or if they do it, are then ready to reproach you when the right moment arises, continuing to say 'I love you' ... those who do not listen to you but then they want to be near you for fear of being alone with themselves.
But then there are also the ‘real ones’ ... that are there by your side as an added value.
We lived in a social context, those who lived and live in a small, lost provincial town and those who lived and live in cities or large metropolises, letting us be influenced by the collective culture, by an open or closed mentality according to the fortune that has taken place.
What about churches, priests and forgiveness of sins?
What are sins? What are churches? What are priests?
Have you ever asked yourself?
The priests who like "God" told me what was right and what was wrong.
With atrocious arrogance they wanted me to believe that I was a sinner and that I didn't deserve to live happily. They made us believe that there is another life called heaven and hell, when heaven and hell are only here on this earth.
Human beings are made of desires. Human beings are born of sex as an act of 'love' or 'violence' before anything else.
How were you born?
They made us believe that we are dirty, that sex is dirty.
But what is sex if not creation, freedom of expression, desire or need?
What is desire?
Repressing our desires means destroying ourselves and the world.
Repression creates disasters. Freedom creates love.
We, as human beings, are full of desires and dreams and desires must be expressed freely.
Sex is a natural action and it is not a sin unless it becomes an obsession or a selfish way to inflict one's pain on another human being.
The 'priests', these strange figures, which have sprung up like mushrooms over the years, and which I don't know how they have appropriated 'divine rights', such as the right to confess and free ourselves from sins ... they, who profess themselves as 'saviours' and allow themselves to blame us or exculpate us for things we have committed, calling them "sins".
They, who want to dominate our psychological sphere, our mind, our soul.
But who are these priests?
Then, there are the psychologists who are taking the place of the priests.
In fact, the psychologist is slowly taking the place of the priest, because the priest has become out of fashion.
The younger generations are no longer interested in priests: they have seen, in five thousand years of human history, what these priests have done. The younger generations are more interested in psychotherapy, psychoanalysis, or other different methods of psychic exploration.
It is about to become a necessary qualification for every bishop, for every priest, to have some degree in psychology, psychotherapy, psychoanalysis because they are aware that their power is diminishing and psychologists are replacing them.
Psychologists are becoming the ‘new priests’.
But the problem is that the new priest is also at the service of the old consolidated power: he is not a revolutionary.
Then, we have our wonderful society ... which imposed us a wrong way of living and rules to follow, professing itself 'democratic'.
A society that make us believe that everything is beautiful and wonderful, hiding the 'true' ... educating ourselves to separation, to conflict: 'the neighbor's grass is always greener', to feel jealousy and envy for those who have more.
What is society if not a group of people who are subject to common laws and regulations and configure an orderly system of moral, cultural, legal, political and economic relations.
The individual creates the society.
Society is nothing but the mirror of the individual.
The more individuals that make up society are dis-informed and mediocre the more society will represent dis-information and mediocrity.
We perpetuate ignorance, uncivilisation.
Then we have the creation of the family.
The family as one of the many prisons ... or is it a liberation?
Most families create psychological disorders in children, they try to educate them without respecting them. The child is not respected in the free expression of his own potential.
We want to create an imitation, not an authentic individual, because the authentic individual is not manageable by families and society.
The authentic individual has his own intelligence and it is dangerous for the family and for the system because he is a rebel.
He would not be accepted but he could change many things.
The politics made up of people who "kill off" each other, this overlapping of voices, speeches that are not understood, fights on TV, a communication that does not exist. The politician is our employee, our servant, not our master.
We pay him with our money.
How can you be a politician without having the ability to listen and communicate?
And then, the people who watch television, nailed to the chair all day to believe in their words and then realise that they are just 'piles of words' blaming others for what happens and not themselves.
What does the individual do to change himself and the surrounding reality?
The economy that is happiness, but the happiness that has been obscured, the freedom that has been supplanted, the human rights that have been trampled on, the man seen as a bargaining chip.
We are now enslaved without realising it: the interests of food, pharmaceutical, banking, political corporations, social networks, weapons, oil interests ... that make us puppets without values inside ...
We are emptied ... because we are satisfied. Are we?
And we buy their services and goods sold with lively commercials, where everything is wonderful. Where did our freedom end up? Why do we choose and enrich those who do not make us feel good? How can we consent to all this? Are we informed? Do we love ourselves?Why don't we use our freedom to change ourselves first and the world?
The banks that take our money. The state that appropriates our money. The politic that does not exist, all that is governed by the economy ... an unhappy economy led by those few riches who want more and more to destroy us, using our ignorance to create more money.
The civilisation that is utopia, the mediocrity of 'defining oneself' as a human being without having the humility to truly discover oneself, and create a better humanity and consequently a better world, where there is respect for others' freedom, for others' happiness, for love as the only religion.
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My whole life has been a continuous struggle for freedom. Funnily I had to fight for my natural right.
I never understood why I had to fight for my freedom, if it's my innate right.
It is part of me: the freedom to be myself, freedom without conditioning, freedom without separation, freedom without prejudice, freedom without a religious belief, freedom without boundaries, the freedom with which I was born and feel a citizen of the world, the freedom to be a 'human being' with my innate rights from birth: the right to life, to happiness, to love, to freedom, to joy ...
Nobody can give me these rights. They are mine.
Who are you who want to enslave me? I was born free and I always will be.
From birth I had to face the mental limitations, first of all that of my parents, who didn't let me be myself. He lacked self-confidence.
As a child I had to suffer psychologically, emotionally and mentally. Why?
I didn't ask to be treated like that.
I didn't ask to come into this world.
But I came in this world and I am a free being.
And as 'free beings' we want to be respected and honored, we want to grow up happily, we want to be supported, loved, we want to live peacefully.
How could you not realise the harm you could do to someone who didn't want to know anything about your problems, your anxieties, your fears, your violence, your ideologies ...
Where was and where is the respect for a child? Respect for yourself?
I didn't ask to give me life with your chains. You gave them to me, as a weight that I then had to carry with me so far. My back bent more and more forward, feeling the damn heavy boulder of things that didn't belong to me.
I don't want those chains anymore.
I suffered violence, but I never gave up my freedom even if everything weighed on me, weakened me, knocked me down, destroyed me.
I didn't ask to let me live as if life was a boulder instead of a formidable experience.
But luckily, I got there alone, without you, over time.
I had to suffer, swallow, ruin my stomach, my mind, my heart.
I ran away, I left home, I left my country.
I could no longer live with you and your chains that had become mine.
My mother spied on me, followed me, checked me on every occasion and I had to wear a mask that I didn't like, I had to tell lies because the truth caused me problems.
They didn't believe me. They didn’t believe the truth.
My father was a violent father, who never learned to communicate emotionally and the only thing he did was to swear and beat when I disobeyed.
But for me that was respect for myself, not disobedience, respect for my freedom as a human being. Disobedience is intelligence. Now it doesn't do it anymore. And then, people who talked and talked ... "lit the fire". Some things I can't forget.
Even now, they look at me and believe that 'I am still a loser' because I am without a home, without a car, without a family, without a job.
Am I a loser for what I don't have?
I don't need a house, or a car or family to define me. I'm not that narrow. I am immense and infinite like the Universe, and now you can think of me what you want.
I ran away at 18 y/o. I remember that day.
I also had a plaster cast on my left leg after a very bad accident where I broke both of my legs and went to study Economics in Bologna.
I was confused.
My artistic work
Around the age of 40 I collapsed, mentally, emotionally and then physically.
I was living in London.
I realised that I had accumulated resentment, guilt, anger, lies ... and my relationship partners accused me of being unhappy because of me.
One even wanted to jump from the fourth floor of one building and another told me that I had transformed him from a sublime being into a beast.
He was bi-polar and depended on alcohol.
I watched them stunned without being able to understand their violent reactions to my words. They criticised me constantly, blaming me for their unhappiness.