La Campagna Romana

A succession of triumphal arches that made the Roman countryside famous.

Rome eats Rome, this is the aim of this project, essentially to analyze our relations to the unspoiled land and its essentials elements. We start from two factors that coexist, the natural landscape and the pressure of urban and suburban industrial civilizations. But here we have a third ingredient often dominant, the ever present memory of the human past. After a methodic analysis we see that the characteristic of the Roman countryside are pieces of its glorious past that appear as if they had always been there.  It is a rooted tradition in Rome that whatever  glory emerges, is only there to remind you how much every inhale you take are molecules from Caesar’s last gasp. The characteristic is that spontaneously everything from the modern developing lives naturally next door with the imperial past, and whatever emerges takes a natural part of the urban texture, without any special care, it is there because is.

The first Aqueduct built was the Aqua Appia in 312 B.C. by the time we come to the second century there were eleven aqueducts, nine hundred million of water a day was transported to the city of Rome, four hundred miles of aquifers veins that run through valleys and mountains, transporting the water by a very ingenious method of gravity.

The method applyed  to compile this work is meditative, depicting the importance of the elements that we always take for granted, the importance of simple things that we often too late find to be essential for our survival.  Surveying the Roman country side with an ideal picture in mind, that no longer exist, but that will help finding  the equivalent in reality. Refusing the idyllic vision of the landscape, considering all giving way to inspirations and recording the modern alterations as relevant as the ancient glorious past.

Pliny the Elder (23-79 AD) wrote: “Who wants to carefully consider the quantity of water for public use for the baths, swimming pools, fountains, houses, suburban gardens, villas; the distance from which the water comes, the conduits that have been built, the mountains that have been drilled, the valleys that have been crossed, he will have to recognize that nothing in the whole world has ever existed more wonderful “.

Now the Aqueducts look in agony, they are ruins scattered in the Campagna, but it is difficult to regard them simply as man -made when they have such a special aura, when they sometimes paper natural to the landscape. They seem even older then the mountains. They sometimes come alive like ancient skeletons, or creations of giants, always they make us think of the greatness of Rome, of its decline and fall, and about our civilization as it is now.

Often these photos are thought of in sequence as if they were filling the gaps left by time.

AQUA LA CAMPAGNA ROMANA is a project printed  in  Limited Edition 1\50 \ large format Black & white negatives\ contact printed on 100% cotton paper  \ Fabriano Rosaspina\ Hahnemuhle fine art\ strictly Cyanotype \Silver Salt .

“The extraordinary greatness of the Roman Empire manifests itself first of all in three things : the aqueducts, the paved streets and the construction of sewers”.                                                                Dionysius of Halicarnassus \ Roman Antiquities