BEHIND THE SHOT

— The stories behind locations and shooting  —

- OPULENCE VESTIGES -

VENETO

2021

- OPULENCE VESTIGES -

VENETO
2021

Along the end of a dirt road flanked by a long row of cypresses there is this building of cubic shape that remains quite hidden away from the main routes.

From a distance I could notice that to the side, and light moved on the back, there was a farmhouse, so not to alert anyone of my presence, I decided to leave the car far enough and take the long dirt road totally on foot.

It was a late afternoon in spring 2020 and I was rushing on the path thinking that at that time there might be someone from the cottage who could go back and forth from the path asking questions. In fact, I heard the sound of a car and I hid behind one of the cypresses on the side of the road.
The car passed and I could continue towards the open space in front of the building. From afar, towards the cottage, I heard dogs barking, perhaps to greet the arrival of the car. Determined not to find out if the barking was aimed at the car or at my presence I tried to find as soon as possible the fastest way to enter.

Luck was on my side because the shutters of a French door on the ground floor were just pulled over and also open.

The inner ground floor was completely empty and anonymous like many other buildings visited. But the little gem to photograph was on the first floor.

And if it had been a jewel it would have been a ruby so red was the dominant color of the whole room.
A marvel frescoed in art nouveau style that represented a woman and a pomegranate plant that with its branches filled the totality of the space on the walls.

I tried to learn about the representation linked to pomegranate that, in its symbolism, represented ancient love, death and rebirth.

But on the figure I found nothing certain, only a reference to the myth of Persephone in ancient Greek culture.

A large crack ruined part of the fresco as it can make a scar on the face of a beautiful woman.

The shot was made very easily, no special light conditions were needed. In the palace there was nothing more interesting than almost no other room dared to compete with the beauty of that fresco.

The title represents an assonance and a play on words between this lady depicted in liberty style (Art Nouveau) and the statue of New York liberty, also called Lady Liberty, which, moreover, quite share the period of their creation.

I still think about that room and the symbolism of pomegranate hoping that it can be a good omen and that the death/abandonment of the building can find its rebirth in its restoration.

C’era una volta una villa nella foresta… o almeno, inizierebbe così la nostra storia se fosse una fiaba perchè la villa in questione è veramente avvolta dalla vegetazione del suo parco che è cresciuta talmente da diventare una foresta.
 
Sembra la villa di un film di Tim Burton, rimasta nascosta per preservare chissà quale stregoneria al suo interno.
 
Comunque mi addentro nella boscaglia improvvisando il sentiero migliore, anche quando scorgo l’edificio fatico a trovare la strada migliore per un’entrata fattibile che non sia avvolta dai rovi.
 
Siamo ad Agosto 2020 (ma son tornato un’altra volta nell’anno sucessivo per fotografare con nuove ottiche) e l’umidità che mi avvolge, assieme alle zanzare, è degna di una foresta equatoriale.
 
Da fuori posso ammirare già le potenzialità della villa con quelle sue lavorazioni decorative intorno ai portoni decadenti.
 
Il silenzio viene interrotto quando accedo da un ingresso laterale divelto, a causa dei soliti piccioni che svolazzano caoticamente verso una fuga.
 
La struttura rientra nella categoria “scheletroni” ovvero al suo interno non c’era presenza di vecchia mobilia abbandonata, tutto è stato accuratamente trafugato.
 
Ma la bellezza di questo posto è rappresentata da ciò che non si può rubare.
 
Già dalle prime stanze al pian terreno trovo stanzone con decorazioni ai muri. L’opulenza passata è facilmente intuibile osservando tutto intorno.
 
Una cappelletta privata dimora nel centro dell’edificio in un piccolo vano bistrattato da qualche scritta di vandali.
 
Metà della villa è pressochè crollato, ci sono alcune stanze, fortunatamente quelle meno attraenti, che hanno al centro un enorme pila di detriti, il soffitto quasi totalmente crollato.

Along the end of a dirt road flanked by a long row of cypresses there is this building of cubic shape that remains quite hidden away from the main routes.

From a distance I could notice that to the side, and light moved on the back, there was a farmhouse, so not to alert anyone of my presence, I decided to leave the car far enough and take the long dirt road totally on foot.

It was a late afternoon in spring 2020 and I was rushing on the path thinking that at that time there might be someone from the cottage who could go back and forth from the path asking questions. In fact, I heard the sound of a car and I hid behind one of the cypresses on the side of the road.
The car passed and I could continue towards the open space in front of the building. From afar, towards the cottage, I heard dogs barking, perhaps to greet the arrival of the car. Determined not to find out if the barking was aimed at the car or at my presence I tried to find as soon as possible the fastest way to enter.

Luck was on my side because the shutters of a French door on the ground floor were just pulled over and also open.

The inner ground floor was completely empty and anonymous like many other buildings visited. But the little gem to photograph was on the first floor.

And if it had been a jewel it would have been a ruby so red was the dominant color of the whole room.
A marvel frescoed in art nouveau style that represented a woman and a pomegranate plant that with its branches filled the totality of the space on the walls.

I tried to learn about the representation linked to pomegranate that, in its symbolism, represented ancient love, death and rebirth.

But on the figure I found nothing certain, only a reference to the myth of Persephone in ancient Greek culture.

A large crack ruined part of the fresco as it can make a scar on the face of a beautiful woman.

The shot was made very easily, no special light conditions were needed. In the palace there was nothing more interesting than almost no other room dared to compete with the beauty of that fresco.

The title represents an assonance and a play on words between this lady depicted in liberty style (Art Nouveau) and the statue of New York liberty, also called Lady Liberty, which, moreover, quite share the period of their creation.

I still think about that room and the symbolism of pomegranate hoping that it can be a good omen and that the death/abandonment of the building can find its rebirth in its restoration.

In un angolo della villa vengo ammaliato dalla stanza della foto, forse da letto. Gli intarsi decorativi sui muri ed un vecchio scheletro di un letto arrugginito mi fan fantasticare sulla stanza, forse era la stanza da letto di qualche fanciullo primogenito privilegiato. Mi immagino la badante che legge romanzi d’avventura di Giulio Verne al pargolo.
 
Un grande scalone nel centro dell’edificio con numerose macerie conduce su uno spazio vuoto del primo piano. Per mia fortuna esiste ancora una scala secondaria che normalmente veniva usata dalla servitù per muoversi inosservata.
 
Questa scaletta mi porta ad ispezionare la metà sopravvissuta del primo piano. Trovo due stanzone molto simili con entrambe i resti di un caminetto.
 
Entrambe condividono anche il furto del pavimento, infatti restano solo i listelli che facevano da supporto. E condividono l’odore acre del guano di piccione che permea l’aria, con un tappeto di escrementi che rimpiazza il pavimento originario.
 
Mi muovo saltellando sui listelli più intonsi per evitare il più possibile l’effetto cereali “Cococops” calpestati.
 
Dopo due orette passate a realizzare il miglior servizio possibile di shooting di questa incredibile villa mi accingo a lasciare.
 
I piccioni riprendono fiducia quando tolgo il disturbo, e tornano a rimanere gli ultimi abitanti di questa meraviglia decadente.

Along the end of a dirt road flanked by a long row of cypresses there is this building of cubic shape that remains quite hidden away from the main routes.

From a distance I could notice that to the side, and light moved on the back, there was a farmhouse, so not to alert anyone of my presence, I decided to leave the car far enough and take the long dirt road totally on foot.

It was a late afternoon in spring 2020 and I was rushing on the path thinking that at that time there might be someone from the cottage who could go back and forth from the path asking questions. In fact, I heard the sound of a car and I hid behind one of the cypresses on the side of the road.
The car passed and I could continue towards the open space in front of the building. From afar, towards the cottage, I heard dogs barking, perhaps to greet the arrival of the car. Determined not to find out if the barking was aimed at the car or at my presence I tried to find as soon as possible the fastest way to enter.

Luck was on my side because the shutters of a French door on the ground floor were just pulled over and also open.

The inner ground floor was completely empty and anonymous like many other buildings visited. But the little gem to photograph was on the first floor.

And if it had been a jewel it would have been a ruby so red was the dominant color of the whole room.
A marvel frescoed in art nouveau style that represented a woman and a pomegranate plant that with its branches filled the totality of the space on the walls.

I tried to learn about the representation linked to pomegranate that, in its symbolism, represented ancient love, death and rebirth.

But on the figure I found nothing certain, only a reference to the myth of Persephone in ancient Greek culture.

A large crack ruined part of the fresco as it can make a scar on the face of a beautiful woman.

The shot was made very easily, no special light conditions were needed. In the palace there was nothing more interesting than almost no other room dared to compete with the beauty of that fresco.

The title represents an assonance and a play on words between this lady depicted in liberty style (Art Nouveau) and the statue of New York liberty, also called Lady Liberty, which, moreover, quite share the period of their creation.

I still think about that room and the symbolism of pomegranate hoping that it can be a good omen and that the death/abandonment of the building can find its rebirth in its restoration.

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