Andrea Calestani Photographer


This is the photographic journey of a great love for a great beauty. Of which every single photograph in turn becomes a story to tell. It was not easy to handle, and if necessary measure, a love affair lasting more than forty years. For a place, a city: Parma.

An imaginary that for a long timer occupied my most fantastic imagination when still I had no knowledge of anywhere else, whether near or far. Then the tireless and uncomfortable return trips, by the hands of dad and mum. Every time without ever taking into account the nostalgia suffered for each separation. Because there was already a sure promise to do another trip.

And when the dream of the final return journey came true, and due to the habit of closeness, of the time that passed, the great love faded a little, so I began to portray her. I have never had the ambition of photographing the soft R (the R used by Italians who have a problem with the normal R); the captivating, sing-song dialect inflections; the anecdotal identity that persistently runs through every hideout at any time.

But the soul does! Yes, I have the presumption to photograph it. And the elusive atmospheres for rapidly changing times. Characters, faces, with always something of Parma in the background. Perhaps it is not strange that loves weave together where places and events spark emotions.

Rare meetings in deserted streets on a foggy night. Itinerant musicians and dancers who stretch and intertwine from the villages, under the faces of the porticoes up to the churchyard of the Duomo. What changing events of intense emotion and great beauty, which shatter my imperfect patterns.

And when the night draws to a close, the thousand diagonal lights and shadows, first of dawn, then of sunset, penetrate it and paint it, sculpting its features: the architecture, the bicycles, the plane trees of Maria Luigia… But this is an open book.

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