I Must Have Been Blind

PhotographerSimone D'Angelo
PrizeHonorable Mention

I was born in the Sacco Valley, an area of central Italy that takes the name from the river that flows through it. After the second World War crisis, the valley became categorized as a “depressed area” hence opening the doors to a fast process of industrialization that compromised the natural farming vocation of this region, up to the official recognition of the environmental emergency state of the past ten years. Years of investigations and research brought to light the presence of toxic agents in the food chain such as B-hexachlorocyclohexane, now present in clear waters. This powerful insecticide used in farming since the ‘50s was prohibited only in 2001. As of today the basin of the Sacco river is present in the NSI (National Sites of Interest for drainage). This is the current state of ecological disequilibrium and stability that I had planned to illustrate, showing the visible alterations in a system (microcosm) I thought I knew. Soon however I was surprised to find myself lost in a place which seemed alien to me. A place out of time, where every clue on the effect of the human productive system pointed me to images that seemed to suggest the redemption of a nature that can do without mankind. Human presence is in fact now excluded. Fragile and useless like the traces it leaves behind.