Silvia Ghimbas on
Francesco Galli’s “In search of identity” (My city and the mountain)
May 28 – June 20
(text and images by Silvia Ghimbas)
Francesco Galli sets out to reveal, through the use of his lenses, the fascinating tale of Viterbo, a small Italian city, built at the foot of Mount Palanzana. History has left a mark in this area, leaving it to face a loss of identity, as its population suffered from displacement after WWII bombings. Locals were suddenly forced away from the historical centre, placed in neighbourhoods outside the city’s walls.
Galli’s photographs portray the landscape of Viterbo, both urban and natural, seeking to capture its truth, its essence. The artist manages to insightfully capture details that can easily be overlooked by most passers-by. The contrasting compositions, the almost complete lack of human subjects, as well as the black and white tones give the surreal sense of a particular solitude, a mystical reality. One can’t help but imagine what it would be like to live there, to be part of a culture that was once in harmony with its environment. If only mountains could talk…
For the most part, “In search of identity” is a powerful representation of a contemporary situation, unfolding a desire to reconnect with ones roots, perhaps not only on behalf of the artist.