THE DECAY PROJECT

— The path towards a style —

Riproduci video

-URBEX: UN’ AVVENTURA TRA INDIANA JONES, PIRATI E CARAVAGGIO-

-URBEX: UN' AVVENTURA TRA INDIANA JONES, PIRATI E CARAVAGGIO-

-URBEX: AN ADVENTURE AMONG INDIANA JONES, PIRATES AND CARAVAGGIO-

-URBEX: AN ADVENTURE AMONG INDIANA JONES, PIRATES AND CARAVAGGIO-

 
In the last few years my adventurous spirit pushed me to discover the beauty of the exploration of abandoned places.
 
I find myself scavenging like a pirate, looking for hidden, ancient architectural treasures, from past epochs.
 
These places, often difficult to access and find, represent both a discover and immortalize challenge about places that contain the passage of time. Hidden and rare places that could disappear by the hands of the wear and tear of time, or demolitions or renovations that will erase their original melancholy history.
 
When I was a child I admired Indiana Jones and famous adventure movies: now I can find that adventurous thrill in the decaying villas of the Eighteenth century, in the rural mansions of the Nineteenth century and in the decommissioned factories of the early Twentieth century…They have become my “Temple of Doom”. Like in those movies brambles, spiderwebs and dust accompany my steps, as I am an anachronistic presence inside these forgotten places, where in some cases the uncontrolled nature takes back the space stolen by mankind.
 
To differentiate myself from other explorers I wanted to create a personal stylistic “Caravaggesque” imprint: with lights piercing the darkness of the scene, photos almost reach the quality of a painting. Moreover Caravaggio is considered the first great photographer and which best source of inspiration could I find to invent this bridge between urban photography and painting?
 
This photograpy genre of mine conveys discordant and unsettling emotions: is this connotation negative, where the beauty of these places is corrupted by darkness and abandonment, or is it positive, where the aforementioned beauty keeps its pride, despite the wear of nature and time?
 
Like I’m a “ Chronoreporter” I try to preserve in my shots the melancholic beauty of these places, buildings which will be most likely demolished or the elements will make them crumble upon themselves.
 
They are treasures that nobody will have a way to know, wiped out by time.

Negli ultimi anni il mio spirito d’avventura mi ha spinto a scoprire il fascino dell’esplorazione urbana legata a luoghi abbandonati.

Mi ritrovo a girare come un pirata in cerca non di ruderi scheletrici ma di antichi tesori nascosti d’architettura appartenuti ad epoche passate.

Questi ambienti, spesso difficilmente accessibili e rintracciabili, rappresentano una sfida sia nella ricerca che nel riuscire ad immortalare luoghi che racchiudono il passaggio secolare del tempo. Dei luoghi nascosti e rari che potrebbero scomparire o per mano del logorio del tempo, o di demolizioni o di ristrutturazioni che ne cancelleranno la loro originale malinconica storia.

Da bambino ammiravo Indiana Jones ed i grandi film d’avventura: ora nelle ville decadenti del Settecento, nelle fabbriche dismesse d’inizio Novecento o nelle tenute agrarie dell’Ottocento riesco a trovare quella sensazione di brivido,avventura ed esplorazione…sono diventate il mio “Tempio Maledetto“. E come in quei film rovi, ragnatele e polvere accompagnano i miei passi muovendomi come una presenza anacronistica all’interno di questi posti dimenticati dove in alcuni casi la natura incontrollata si riprende lo spazio rubato dall’uomo.
 
Per differenziarmi da altri esploratori ho voluto creare una personale impronta stilistica “caravaggesca”: con le luci che trapassano il buio della scena, le fotografie arrivano quasi ad assumere la qualità di un dipinto. D’altronde Caravaggio è considerato il primo grande fotografo e quale miglior fonte d’ispirazione potrei trovare per inventarmi questo ponte tra fotografia urbana e pittura?
 
Questo mio genere fotografico trasmette emozioni contradditorie: una connotazione negativa in cui la bellezza di questi posti è corrotta dall’oscurita e dall’abbandono, o positiva dove questa bellezza mantiene il suo orgoglio nonostante il logorio della natura e del tempo?
 
Come fossi un “cronoreporter” tento di preservare negli scatti la malinconica bellezza di questi luoghi, strutture che molto probabilmente andranno demolite o le intemperie faranno crollare su se stesse.
 
Tesori che il pubblico non avrà più modo di conoscere, spazzati via dal tempo.
 
In the last few years my adventurous spirit pushed me to discover the beauty of the exploration of abandoned places (which is named urbex).
 
I find myself scavenging like a pirate, looking for hidden, ancient architectural treasures, from past epochs.
 
These places, often difficult to access and find, represent both a discover and immortalize challenge about places that contain the passage of time. Hidden and rare places that could disappear by the hands of the wear and tear of time, or demolitions or renovations that will erase their original melancholy history.
 
When I was a child I admired Indiana Jones and famous adventure movies: now I can find that adventurous thrill in the decaying villas of the Eighteenth century, in the rural mansions of the Nineteenth century and in the decommissioned factories of the early Twentieth century…They have become my “Temple of Doom”. Like in those movies brambles, spiderwebs and dust accompany my steps, as I am an anachronistic presence inside these forgotten places, where in some cases the uncontrolled nature takes back the space stolen by mankind.
 
To differentiate myself from other explorers I wanted to create a personal stylistic “Caravaggesque” imprint: with lights piercing the darkness of the scene, photos almost reach the quality of a painting. Moreover Caravaggio is considered the first great photographer and which best source of inspiration could I find to invent this bridge between urban photography and painting?
 
This photograpy genre of mine conveys discordant and unsettling emotions: is this connotation negative, where the beauty of these places is corrupted by darkness and abandonment, or is it positive, where the aforementioned beauty keeps its pride, despite the wear of nature and time?
 
Like I’m a “ Chronoreporter” I try to preserve in my shots the melancholic beauty of these places, buildings which will be most likely demolished or the elements will make them crumble upon themselves.
 
They are treasures that nobody will have a way to know, wiped out by time.
 
Riproduci video

-BEHIND THE SCENES-

-BEHIND THE SCENES-

The exploration of abandoned places is a fascinating world. Behind it lies a series of challenges that can hardly be described in words.

The difficulty is already present at the beginning, at the time of the search. The web and active street search are the two main methods. In the first case the search is made of keywords to look for something interesting or related, can pop up interesting photos or articles about it that can arouse an initial interest.

Then, there is a verification phase, whenever possible. By narrowing the search circle to a certain location you can assess whether the place is actually valid. This is not always possible, so we move on to the actual exploratory phase. All potentially interesting places are marked on Google maps. Sometimes you go there on purpose, other times, you take the opportunity to check out a place when you are in the area, generally to make another abandoned place nearby.

We need to make a clarification: these places, although abandoned, often have an owner, and the fact that someone enters, even if moved by noble artistic intentions, may not make him agree. This is why it is a bordel line activity, where there is an important ethic in respect of the place and in not alerting people outside who could take action to recall owners, guardians or authorities.

Each place is its own, there is no single rule. Access can be easy, extremely complex or a middle way. The place can also be completely isolated, located on the edge of a village or be in the center of a large city. The analysis of the place, with its weaknesses, is part of the challenge to get into it.

Sometimes you just have to sneak into broken doors or shutters, other times you have to proceed through walls of brambles, climb over walls or slip into narrow openings, other times you have to be more creative and maybe use stairs or objects to access elevated areas. It goes without saying that in these cases there is a component of risk not to be underestimated, as well as considering that often the buildings can no subject and subsidence if you do not move carefully.

Being invisible is the main rule. Some buildings are even accessible only according to times of the day or periods of the season. The fog can hide you in an open garden in view from your neighbor or a corn field can hide you to pass in a large field at the back of a building.

Now, think about overcoming all these obstacles and finding yourself inside a completely empty and uninteresting building. It’s part of the game, it happens all the time, but all these negative discoveries help to make you feel euphoric when there are surprises and unexpected hidden treasures.

Each exploration and access attempt has a story of its own, different from all the others, and this feeds the charm filling you with experiences to tell.

Quello dell’esplorazione dei luoghi abbandonati è un mondo affascinante. Dietro si cela una serie di sfide che difficilmente a parole è possibile descrivere.
 
La difficoltà si presenta già all’inizio, al momento della ricerca. Il web e la ricerca attiva per strada sono i due principali metodi.
Nel primo caso la ricerca è fatta di parole chiave per  cercare qualcosa di interessante o correlato, possono saltar fuori foto interessanti o articoli al riguardo che possono suscitare un interesse iniziale.
 
Sucessivamente c’è una fase di verifica, quando possibile. Restringendo il cerchio della ricerca su un determinato luogo si può valutare se effettivamente il posto è valido. Non sempre è possibile ciò, per questo si passa alla fase esplorativa vera e propria. Su Google maps vengono segnati tutti i posti potenzialmente interessanti. A volte ci si reca appositamente, altre volte, si prende l’occasione di verificare un posto quando si è in zona, generalmente per fare un altro luogo abbandonato nelle vicinanze.
 
Occorre fare una precisazione: questi posti seppur abbandonati, spesso hanno un proprietario, ed il fatto che qualcuno ci entri, anche se mosso da nobili intenzioni artistiche, può non farlo trovare d’accordo. Per questo è un’attività bordel line, dove vige un importante etica nel rispetto del luogo e nel non allertare persone all’esterno che potrebbero attivarsi per richiamare proprietari, guardiani o le autorità.
 
Ogni posto è a sè, non esiste una regola unica. L’accesso può essere facile,estremamente complesso o una via di mezzo. Il luogo può inoltre essere completamente isolato, trovarsi ai bordi di un paese o essere nel centro di una grande città. L’analisi del posto, coi suoi punti deboli, fa parte della sfida per riuscire ad entrarci.
 
A volte basta intrufolarsi in porte o persiane rotte, altre volte bisogna procedere in mezzo a muri di rovi, scavalcare muri o infilarsi in strette aperture, altre volte occorre essere più creativi e magari utilizzare scale od oggetti per accedere a zone sopraelevate. Va da sè che in questi casi c’è una componente di rischio da non sottovalutare, oltre a considerare che spesso i palazzi possono essere soggetti e cedimenti se non ci si muove attentamente.
 
Essere invisibili è la regola principale. Alcuni palazzi sono accessibili addirittura solo in base ad orari del giorno o periodi della stagione. La nebbia può nasconderti in un giardino allo scoperto in vista dal vicino di casa o un campo di granoturco può nasconderti per passare in un vasto campo sul retro di un palazzo.
 
Ora, pensa di superare tutti questi ostacoli e trovarti all’interno di un edificio completamente vuoto e privo di interesse. Fa parte del gioco, capita spessissimo, ma tutte queste scoperte negative contribuiscono a farti sentire euforico quando invece capitano delle sorprese e trovi degli inattesi tesori nascosti.
 
Ogni esplorazione e tentativo di accesso ha una storia propria, diversa da tutte le altre, e questo ne alimenta il fascino riempiendoti di esperienze da raccontare.

The exploration of abandoned places is a fascinating world. Behind it lies a series of challenges that can hardly be described in words.

The difficulty is already present at the beginning, at the time of the search. The web and active street search are the two main methods. In the first case the search is made of keywords to look for something interesting or related, can pop up interesting photos or articles about it that can arouse an initial interest.

Then, there is a verification phase, whenever possible. By narrowing the search circle to a certain location you can assess whether the place is actually valid. This is not always possible, so we move on to the actual exploratory phase. All potentially interesting places are marked on Google maps. Sometimes you go there on purpose, other times, you take the opportunity to check out a place when you are in the area, generally to make another abandoned place nearby.

We need to make a clarification: these places, although abandoned, often have an owner, and the fact that someone enters, even if moved by noble artistic intentions, may not make him agree. This is why it is a bordel line activity, where there is an important ethic in respect of the place and in not alerting people outside who could take action to recall owners, guardians or authorities.

Each place is its own, there is no single rule. Access can be easy, extremely complex or a middle way. The place can also be completely isolated, located on the edge of a village or be in the center of a large city. The analysis of the place, with its weaknesses, is part of the challenge to get into it.

Sometimes you just have to sneak into broken doors or shutters, other times you have to proceed through walls of brambles, climb over walls or slip into narrow openings, other times you have to be more creative and maybe use stairs or objects to access elevated areas. It goes without saying that in these cases there is a component of risk not to be underestimated, as well as considering that often the buildings can no subject and subsidence if you do not move carefully.

Being invisible is the main rule. Some buildings are even accessible only according to times of the day or periods of the season. The fog can hide you in an open garden in view from your neighbor or a corn field can hide you to pass in a large field at the back of a building.

Now, think about overcoming all these obstacles and finding yourself inside a completely empty and uninteresting building. It’s part of the game, it happens all the time, but all these negative discoveries help to make you feel euphoric when there are surprises and unexpected hidden treasures.

Each exploration and access attempt has a story of its own, different from all the others, and this feeds the charm filling you with experiences to tell.

-WHY LOCATIONS ARE NOT REVEALED?-

-WHY LOCATIONS ARE NOT REVEALED?-

Is the recurring question. Who frequents this world, unfortunately, also knows the negative aspects of spreading the name of a location.

Not all explorers have an ethic about respect for the place. And, above all, not all explorers are simply such, but often they are also vandals or thieves, ready to take away items for personal use or sell furniture to junk shops. In addition, many do not share the ethics of moving silently or invisibly, some think to make a tourist trip, with the consequence that guardians or authorities are alerted by closing the openings, so that other explorers or photographers can no longer enter.

Let’s also add all the above, on the search for the place. It would also be quite stupid to waste hours of time and then give them to the masses, mass of which you have absolutely no idea of its intentions, often facing with tourist spirit dangerous places or private property.

But in my opinion, these places retain their decadent charm especially because they are hidden and untouched by occasional onlookers.

For comparison, try to think of a hidden, clean and pristine beach. Now think of that beach full of tourists with all that goes with it, rudeness, filth, entrepreneurs who want to make money off of it.


Yes, preserving an ancient palace is our responsibility.

E’ la domanda ricorrente. Chi frequenta questo mondo, purtroppo, conosce anche gli aspetti negativi della diffusione del nome di una location.
 
Non tutti gli esploratori hanno un’etica che riguarda il rispetto del posto. E soprattutto non tutti gli esploratori sono semplicemente tali ma spesso sono anche vandali o ladri, pronti a portarsi via oggetti per uso personale o vendere mobili a rigattieri. Inotre molti non condividono l’etica del muoversi silenziosi o invisibili, alcuni pensano di fare una gita turistica, con la conseguenza che guardiani o autorità vengono allertati provvedendo alla chiusura delle aperture, così che altri esploratori o fotografi non possano più entrare.
 
Aggiungiamoci anche tutto quanto detto nella sezione sopra, sulla ricerca del posto. Sarebbe anche abbastanza stupido perdere ore di tempo per poi regalarle alla massa, massa del quale non hai minimamente idea delle sue intenzioni, spesso che affronta con spirito da turista posti pericolosi o proprietà private.
 
Ma a mio avviso, questi luoghi mantengono il loro fascino decadente soprattutto perchè sono nascosti e incontaminati da curiosi occasionali.
 
Per fare un paragone, provate a pensare ad una spiaggia nascosta, pulita ed incontaminata. Ora pensate a quella spiaggia colma di turisti con tutto quello che ne consegue, maleducazione, sporcizia, imprenditori cui vogliono lucrarci sopra.
 
Sì, preservare un antico palazzo è una nostra responsabilità .

Is the recurring question. Who frequents this world, unfortunately, also knows the negative aspects of spreading the name of a location.

Not all explorers have an ethic about respect for the place. And, above all, not all explorers are simply such, but often they are also vandals or thieves, ready to take away items for personal use or sell furniture to junk shops. In addition, many do not share the ethics of moving silently or invisibly, some think to make a tourist trip, with the consequence that guardians or authorities are alerted by closing the openings, so that other explorers or photographers can no longer enter.

Let’s also add all written in the above section, on the search for the place. It would also be quite stupid to waste hours of time and then give them to the masses, mass of which you have absolutely no idea of its intentions, often facing with tourist spirit dangerous places or private property.

But in my opinion, these places retain their decadent charm especially because they are hidden and untouched by occasional onlookers.

For comparison, try to think of a hidden, clean and pristine beach. Now think of that beach full of tourists with all that goes with it, rudeness, filth, entrepreneurs who want to make money off of it.

Yes, preserving an ancient palace is our responsibility.

11032017-_MG_1072-Modifica-2-Modifica-Modifica

-REALIZATION-

-REALIZATION-

Most of my works are dark by choice (even if sometimes the circumstances don’t allow it): it can be noticed as in these marked shadows a scene-piercing light can be found, which enlightens the subjects or becomes itself the star of the shot. From here my personal stylistic choice about giving a “Caravaggesque” impression to my works.
 
I take advantage of natural light only, sometimes I deliberately wait for the Sun to move, in order to have a specific light in a specific room (my background as a landscape photographer affects my works quite a lot!).
 
I don’t use any spotlight: my spotlights are the shutters to modulate and channel the light.
 
Besides any technical matter there’s a practical reason behind my choice: since I need to crawl or climb with my backpack, often in difficult conditions, it’s better to be light and unencumbered. Also, it can happen to be almost caught and in that case it’s useful to leave the scene as soon as possible.

Still being architectural photography I follow nonetheless all the tricks in the book, like lenses used in wide-angle mode, and a focus on the perspective lines. Only for creative purposes may happen to deliberately upset these rules.

Untreated or crooked perspective lines can normally represent a kind of “poetic license” in this genre. In fact, the sense of devastation can be perfectly translated into a composition with crooked architectural lines, transmitting a sense of precariousness to the scene. But, often, my intent is to reproduce the ancient pride and elegance of the structure. Hence the choice to maintain a rigor in the frame, typical of normal interior photography and architecture.

La maggior parte delle mie opere sono buie (anche se le situazioni a volte non consentono questa scelta).
Si può notare come in queste ombre marcate troviamo sempre una luce che va a trapassare la scena illuminando i soggetti diventando spesso loro stesse le protagoniste dello scatto. Da qui la mia scelta stilistica personale di dare un’impronta “caravaggesca” alle mie opere.
 
Sfrutto esclusivamente la luce naturale.
La sfida è inseguire o attendere lo spostamento del sole  per avere una determinata luce in una determinata stanza. In alcuni casi torno nello stesso posto anche in stagioni differenti per la diversa variazione di temperatura della luce ( la mia formazione come fotografo paesaggista influisce non poco! ).
Non uso alcun faretto, i miei faretti sono le persiane per modulare e canalizzare la luce.
 
Oltre al discorso tecnico c’è anche una motivazione pratica: dovendosi infilare o arrampicare con lo zaino spesso in situazioni difficoltose è sempre meglio essere leggeri e poco ingombranti. Inoltre può capitare di star per venir scoperti ed è utile lasciare la scena il più velocemente possibile.
 
Trattandosi pur sempre di fotografia di architettura, seguo comunque tutti gli accorgimenti mirati a questo genere fotografico, come l’uso di ottiche grandangolari e l’attenzione alle linee prospettiche. Solo per esigenze creative può capitare di stravolgere volutamente queste regole.
 
Linee prospettiche non curate o storte possono rappresentare normalmente in questo genere una specie di “licenza poetica”.
Infatti,  il senso di devastazione si può tradurre perfettamente in una composizione con linee architettoniche storte, trasmettendo un senso di precarietà alla scena.
Ma, spesso, il mio intento è quello di riprodurre l’antico orgoglio ed eleganza della struttura. Da qui la scelta di mantenere un rigore nell’inquadratura, propria della normale fotografia d’interni ed architettura.
Most of my works are dark by choice (even if sometimes the circumstances don’t allow it): it can be noticed as in these marked shadows a scene-piercing light can be found, which enlightens the subjects or becomes itself the star of the shot. From here my personal stylistic choice about giving a “Caravaggesque” impression to my works.
 

I only use natural light. 

The challenge is to chase or wait for the sun to move to have a certain light in a certain room. In some cases I go back to the same place even in different seasons due to the different temperature variation of the light (my background as a landscape photographer affects my works quite a lot!).

 
I don’t use any spotlight: my spotlights are the shutters to modulate and channel the light.
 
Besides any technical matter there’s a practical reason behind my choice: since I need to crawl or climb with my backpack, often in difficult conditions, it’s better to be light and unencumbered. Also, it can happen to be almost caught and in that case it’s useful to leave the scene as soon as possible.
 
Still being architectural photography I follow nonetheless all the tricks in the book, like lenses used in wide-angle mode, and a focus on the perspective lines. Only for creative purposes may happen to deliberately upset these rules.
 

Untreated or crooked perspective lines can normally represent a kind of “poetic license” in this genre. In fact, the sense of devastation can be perfectly translated into a composition with crooked architectural lines, transmitting a sense of precariousness to the scene. But, often, my intent is to reproduce the ancient pride and elegance of the structure. Hence the choice to maintain a rigor in the frame, typical of normal interior photography and architecture.

_MG_4351-Modifica-Modifica-Modifica-Modifica copia