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i© Mario Badagliacca.

Cover Stories

The cover of the first issue of FPmag, articulated on the relationship between image and memory, has been entrusted to Mario Badagliacca, who gave a brief interview in which he explains in what context it was realised

Two shoes, mismatched, which bear the marks of countless paths. Of steps repeated, again and again, on any soil and in any condition. Shoes that have trodden on roads dominated by human brutality, and probably the desert sand and the bridges of some old floating rust buckets, before landing in Italian territory and ending up in the rubbish dump on Lampedusa. How many steps does it take to make a better future?
They are only two worn-out shoes of different makes, like many others, however, consumed and united by the hidden dangers of migration. They are migrants’ shoes. Mario Badagliacca shows them slightly overlapping, on a cold white background. This is a way of underlining perhaps the merging of intentions and feelings of who had worn them. From any country they come from, and whoever they were that wore them, it is not difficult to imagine the similar conditions of the journey and of lives. As well as hopes and fears shared. Here then, thanks to the mediation photographic, these two shoes become dying custodians of private memories rarely taken into account by history. It is the very beginning of a synecdoche story behind which crowd a million faces and so many different stories in form but not in substance.
Save them from oblivion, along with many other personal items present in this work, it means returning them to their owners – the migrants, of whatever nationality, ethnicity and religion – a sort of certification of existence. A collective certification and for absence, of course, even though the identity profile of each individual involved cannot be returned, it can make us reflect on the condition of discomfort and invisibility that these people live daily on the run, guilty of looking for in our country (or through it) an opportunity for redemption.
This is why we have chosen it as the cover. Because there are so many stories that crowd along the streets of memory, an almost endless number of possible paths to follow. And we liked to start from who is rarely remembered, too often judged a priori and, in general, hastily forgotten. But we leave this to the author, Mario Badagliacca, to explain the intent of the project better in the video below.

Thanks for the logistic support from the ISFCI in Rome and in particular Dario Coletti and Maurizio Valdarnini.

[ Stefania Biamonti ]