There are twenty or so shots - landscapes, portraits and still lifes - telling the story of a place tragic in a way that cannot be seen at first glance. This is the Valle del Sacco, which stretches from Colleferro to Frosinone: a place with a high level of pollution due to illegal dumping and underground waste. For her thesis in photography at the IED (European Institute of Design), Francesca Spedalieri acquired the maps of the Ministry ofthe Environment that outline a site of national interest waiting to be reclaimed. The works are moving slowly, and in some areas there are underground barrels containing unidentified waste. Francesca came across the story almost by chance. She was amazed at how little was said about this area, so near to her own city, Rome. The area holds the sad distinction of having highest tumour rate in Lazio. It is a “land of fires”, just an hour from the capital. However, the photographic story does not simply select coarse images – even though a look at the whole project reveals a certain unrest and sense of how problematic the location is. Each shot is accompanied by a caption that summarizes the documentary work done, the meetings and interviews. And since the pollution was discovered after a harmful molecule was found in the milk from the area, there is a photo that captures it symbolically. And then there are the faces of the rural folk and the landscapes of apparently untouched nature. The work has already won an honourable mention in the young artists’ category at the Umbria Photo Festival, and the photographer would now like to publish it in magazines or newspapers. This photographic study attempts to comprehend the relationships between places and people. It aims to be a bearer of reporting and information. More than the image’s beauty, it seeks its functionality in the economy of the story.
The story has been written by Caterina Grignani, writer.