2013 - ongoing
Prison Museum confronts the physical and conceptual proximity between the prison of Bolzano and Museion, the city's modern and contemporary art museum. The two institutions are located on the same road, 100m apart from one another.
Built in the 21st century, Museion is a 54m long aluminium cube with transparent front and rear façades that holds 4500 artworks. It is regarded as one of Italy's leading contemporary art museums.
The prison dates back to the 19th century, it measures 62m in length and it was meant to house 90 inmates, a quantity often doubled in recent years. It is among the worst prisons of Italy.
The project unfolds into multiple works, including many authored collectively with the inmates of the institution.
The Art of Camouflage
The project explores the ambivalent role of the army inside and outside civil society, and the difficulties in discerning the two. Focusing on a particular segment of the Italian army, the one of the Alpini, a special force initially created to defend mountainous areas, with a strong sense of community among its members, the project attempts to document the voluntary and involuntary act of camouflage.
Islamic Makeshift Places of Worship in North-East Italy
2009 - 2017
Despite being the second religious confession in Italy, with an estimate of 1.5 million adepts, Islam is still formally not recognised by the state. This fact coupled with the political exploitation by populist and far-right parties, brings the Islamic community to officially own only a dozen mosques, none of which located in the North-East of Italy.Hidden Islam works as cadastral catalogue of typologies of approximately 100 buildings used by local Islamic communities, like warehouses, basements, shops and garages, along with case studies that document specific communities and their history.
Heimat is a German word, which describes a feeling of belonging to a social, cultural and geographical context and is often vaguely translated with homeland.
Heimatkunde, literally translated as the knowledge of Heimat, was a subject taught in German speaking elementary schools in South Tyrol (I) until the beginning of the 90s. The subject explored every child's world starting with the individual, expanding to the family, friends, classroom, social structure and immediate geography up to the environment, animals and plants, and local history. The aim was both to educate the child about the context it belonged to as well as to create social cohesion among a minority community.
Heimatkunde is the school journal I made between 1993 and 1995 republished in form of an artist book. It is an invitation to map your own geographical and conceptual elements of the place we live in, by creating a personal, multi-layerded vision of our local dimension.
Prior to the first Great War, South Tyrol belonged to the Austrio-Hungarian princely County of Tyrol, but this predominantly German-speaking territory was occupied by Italy at the end of the war in 1918. With the rise of Italian Fascism, the new regime made efforts to bring forward the Italianization of South Tyrol. The German language was banished from public service, German teaching was officially forbidden, and German newspapers were censored. The regime also favored mass-immigration from other Italian regions.
Due to its peculiar history, a divide between the German and the Italian speaking communities is still felt among the population and particularly inside institutions: there is only on elementary school in my hometown were Italian and German speaking kids share the same building, although they are only allowed to use the playground at different times. The school, named after the South Tyorlean politician and activist Alexander Langer, a strong advocate of peaceful and convivial coexistence among minority groups, was symbolically chosen as the first venue for the installed book.
Peak & Snow
Peak documents the Dolomites, originally known as the pale mountains, which are a defining element of the Alpine landscape in the northern Italian locales of Bolzano, Trento, and Belluno. The books features images of two mountains sandwiched together on double-page spreads—ranging from dark, nocturnal views to dazzling visions of snowy peaks—that narrate the principle of cyclical seasonality that governs mountain life.
Le Baron Chéper
Le baron chéper (pun on the French title of Italo Calvino's novel, Le baron perché/The Baron in the Trees) documents the district of La Villeneuve in the periphery of Grenoble, France. Built between the seventies and eighties on the outskirts of the city, the district was designed as place where social experiments of ethnic diversity could be carried out and a sense of community could be created through the active role of citizenship. Today these contexts of urban segregation show a wider problem of integration.
Freely inspired by Italo Calvino's book The Baron in the Trees, which tells the story of a teenager who decides to live on top of trees for his entire life after a dispute with his parents, the book is composed of a series of photographs taken in the evening depicting trees in the foreground and architectural spaces in the background, the perspective from which the Baron would have looked at the surrounding buildings and their sleeping inhabitants.
2007 - 2008
Oasis Hotel documentes a hitchhike along China’s Cross-Desert Highway, a road built in the mid 1990s across the Taklamakan desert in the Province of Xinjiang to help the extraction of oil. The journey records the road and its people - truck drivers, cotton pickers, oil well workers and prostitutes, whose lives are caught up in the dependancy and desolation of the prospering oil industry.
The images are chromatically and chronologically arranged in order to create an ideal journey that starts during a blue day in the desert and finishes with almost entirely red images inside a brothel that gives the eponymous title to the book.