ARTHUR’S ISLAND BY ELSA MORANTE

A wonderful classic that teaches and talks about a life in solitude. An Arturo protagonist in his narrating self, an Arturo who becomes a star among his animals and a star will also become a star for the reader who will not easily forget him. Arturo orphan of his mother, grows up with an absent and practically misogynistic father. Arturo tries to grow and while he tells the story his maturity reaches the reader, because even when he is a child, the young man already has to do it himself when he is a child. Elsa Morante, immense and poetic, calls him several times a forastic Arturo and it is precisely the idea and flavor that this reading emanates. The human essence made clear and wild before the blessed reader. Genuine, atavistic, sincere. Arturo is loved, but so is Nunzia, also Salvatore and even Wilhelm and all the protagonists; everyone has a role, everyone is part of the Moor, as is his Oriental Tent. The island of Arturo was awarded the Strega Prize in '57 with its story that leads the reader to a job in search of himself, following in the footsteps of Arturo in his difficult oedipal overcoming of his father. Immense and stellar. A masterpiece that leaves its mark.

ORIENTAL PHOTOGRAPHY

I love to photograph, I love to immortalize every moment of our life on a camera display, to then print it and attach it everywhere.
Do you know why I love photography? Because it allows me to capture that fleeting moment, that moment that I will never get back, except in my memories. I hate time. That’s why I love photos; because, in a way, it’s like I can stop it.
Photographing is a co-creating, a co-becoming. It is like breaking down, merging with the other person and then eventually regaining one’s own identity. Only afterwards it is no longer the same thing. I took a photograph of every moment and of every passing person in my life. I photographed for fear of forgetting. I photographed, instead of looking, of memorizing. And now I find myself with a thousand photos, and no memories.
For those who want to recover everything that passes before their eyes, the only way to act consistently is to take at least one photo per minute, from when they open their eyes in the morning to when they go to sleep. Only in this way will the rolls of exposed film constitute a faithful diary of our days, without anything being excluded. If I started to photograph myself, I would go all the way down this road, at the cost of losing my reason. Instead, you still claim to exercise a choice. But which? A choice in an idyllic, apologetic sense, of consolation, of peace with nature, the nation and relatives. It is not just a photographic choice, yours; it is a choice of life, which leads you to exclude dramatic contrasts, the knots of contradictions, the great tensions of will, passion, aversion. So you think you are saving yourselves from madness, but you fall into mediocrity, into stupidity.
I took pictures. I photographed instead of talking. I photographed so as not to forget. Not to stop looking. I love to photograph. I love having material memories, and I think we should all photograph our memories, and always carry them with us.

Taking pictures is holding your breath when all our faculties of perception converge in front of the fleeting reality: in that instant, capturing the image turns out to be a great physical and intellectual pleasure. To photograph is to put the head, the eye and the heart on the same line of sight. For me, photography is a way of understanding that does not differ from other forms of visual expression. It is a cry, a liberation. It is not a question of affirming one’s originality; it is a way of life.
A photograph: who knows what fascinates us in these colored or black and white pieces of paper. Every time we look at them, we get excited, always. I photograph, because it makes me feel better, so I have the whole world at my fingertips, I never lose anything. Not because I’m afraid of forgetting, I’m not that many years old yet. People who say ‘photographer so I don’t forget things’, I just don’t understand them. What are you stupid? Maybe you need a doctor more than a camera. I photograph because it’s not the close-ups that are important, but the details. Just yesterday I was looking at the photos taken a few years ago and I noticed details that I had never noticed before. How beautiful. A photograph never ceases to amaze us. Photographer to photograph, which seems idiotic as a thing. Have they ever asked you why you breathe? Why do you love? There isn’t a real answer, because there is, you need it. Here, I need to photograph. Not compulsively. I don’t have to prove anything to anyone. It’s not like if you shoot every day you’re a better photographer than someone who shoots twice a month. Maybe for two weeks, two months, the machines remain in the drawer collecting dust, because I can’t, I don’t want to, and what do I know. Then, one beautiful morning, I see details, colors, people that drive me crazy, so I absolutely have to photograph them. There is nothing more beautiful and stimulating than taking pictures of complete strangers. Photography is worth much more, for the fugitiveness of the moment. Notice: maybe this girl is passing through that street, because yesterday she lost her connection to Milan, so she decided to take a stroll along via Montenapoleone, maybe she’s going to look for those strawberries dipped in chocolate that she likes so much and you you are there, by chance. Your lives in that moment cross, without a word, without a real look, just a flash. Here, this shot is yours forever, you will observe it millions of times thinking: ‘It goes as it came out good! I love it’. This happened to me with just a few clicks, and the real emotion is imagining the life of these people, what they will be doing right now, in what part of the world they may be. Often, we wish we could find them, to give them what belongs to them. Because, ‘I insist, you must have it, it’s too beautiful, you look gorgeous in this shot’. And obviously the chances of meeting these subjects are practically close to zero, this is the crucial point for photographers. We fall in love with things seen only once. And we carry them with us forever.

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