Silvia Camporesi | Forcing the landscape
Curated by Angel Moya Garcia
16 nov 2020 – 11 jan 2021
The illusory potential of photography, which marks the research of Silvia Camporesi (Forlì, 1973), is articulated and developed through the suggestions of three Italian places which, due to their characteristics, respond to particular features of uncommon or unusual and in which belongs a specific forcing of the landscape, a radical intervention that has changed the fate of the place in itself.
In particular, the first room of the gallery is dedicated to the “Isle of Roses”, an artificial platform of 400 m² which stood in the Adriatic Sea 11.612 km off the coast of Rimini and 500 m outside the Italian territorial waters. Built by the Bolognese engineer Giorgio Rosa, on 1 May 1968 it proclaimed the status of an independent state and although it gave itself an official language (Esperanto), a government, a currency and a postal issue, it was never formally recognized by any country in the world as an independent nation. Occupied by the Italian police forces on June 26, 1968 and submitted to a naval block, the Isle of Roses was demolished in February 1969. The episode was slowly forgotten, considered for decades only as an attempt to “urbanize” the sea to obtain advantages of a commercial nature. Only since the first decade of 2000 it has been considered as a subject for documentary researches based on the utopic aspects of its genesis.
The second room is instead directed towards the Mirror of Viganella, a town of 200 inhabitants in the Antrona Valley (VCO Province). From 11 November to 2 February of each year, for 83 days, the town is in total absence of sun due to the opposite mountain. For this reason, in 2006 the then mayor Franco Midali and the architect Giacomo Bonzani decided to build a 40 square meter mirror nearby the town, capable of reflecting sunlight in the direction of the valley, even in the dark months. The mirror can direct the sun’s rays in real time towards predetermined places, for example the pedestrian part of the main square and illuminates the village during the winter, for 6 hours a day. The return of natural light is still celebrated today, on February 2 of each year, with a big party.
Finally, in the last room we find the town of Fabbriche di Careggine. A ghost town in the province of Lucca, in the municipality of Vagli Sotto, abandoned in 1947 and then submerged by the waters of the artificial lake of Vagli formed following the construction of a hydroelectric dam. Lake Vagli, the largest hydroelectric basin in Tuscany, has been emptied for maintenance on four occasions, the last one in 1994. Since then, the town of Fabbriche di Careggine has never seen the light.
Three environments documented through photographs, videos and archive materials that highlight the ambiguity between reality and fiction, the need to search for fragments of memories, the consequences of a certain unbridled anthropization and the curiosity that is hidden in contexts on the edges of normality. Utopian atmospheres, suspended and crystallized, in which the landscape is artificially conceived from scratch, unhinged to avoid abandonment or submerged as the only way to avoid oblivion and its disappearance from geographical maps. An alteration of the landscape that intersects with the possibilities of manipulation by photography and which leads the artist to question the infallibility of this medium to faithfully reproduce reality.
Z2O Sara Zanin
Via della Vetrina, 21