- Berlin 2020 -
Having spent the first lockdown in my small hometown in the South of Italy, I was left with quite the urge of leaving and moving. The opportunity arrived in October to do a shoot in Berlin and I didn’t think it twice! I had visited the city only once in my life and I didn’t really connect then. This time I went on a real mission to catch the vibes of the place and discover its soul.

Berlin doesn’t welcome people with those spectacular, hyper hyped side/attractions like other Capitals do. It is a city where you have to dig in and discover, because it hides a lot of secret places where magic happens. I saw this especially in Berlin’s club culture.

Music has a huge importance in my life and next to my visual side, that I express through photography and graphics, music completes me. There I was, in the headquarters of one of the biggest club scenes in the world and I couldn’t live the clubs due to the pandemics. I felt frustrated to the point that I decided to go and show my respect to all these venues anyway. I walked around the almost empty streets, looking for the clubs, from the most hidden to the biggest. They were everywhere. The Tausend Bar under an iron bridge, almost invisible; the Diskothek Melancholie 2 behind the fridge of a grocery store; institutions like the Tresor or Berghain, the rakish Kit-Kat Club (now transformed into a Covid test centre); the reggae paradise Yamm Club and more. I felt so much energy and I tried to catch the spirit of these places with my Yashica FR-I. Following the traces of music seemed to me the best way to feel and discover my new city. A series of locked doors with a hidden world behind them guided me through the streets. The more I saw new places, the more I was curious and wanted to see. There I started my new personal  journey and from the 10 days I had originally planned to stay, I stayed 3 months and then I decided to move permanently to Berlin.

Berghain was for me the most difficult club to capture. It was another common day of lockdown in Berlin but when I arrived on the venue, I found a lot of people taking selfies and pictures as if in front of a monument. This is exactly how I felt in that respectful and institutional atmosphere, grasping the sacrality of club culture in Berlin. It was hard to find a quiet moment to shoot and while I was waiting, a man with his shopping trolley stopped in front of me to contemplate the giant sign “Morgen ist die frage” - “Tomorrow is the question”.  Tomorrow was really the question probably everyone was asking that day. There, I realised the second meaning of my photographic journey. My personal experience of a Berlin with no-clubs, but also the universal reality in this crazy moment of transition affected by pandemics.

The same day, walking around, my eyes were caught by this wall with written in large letters “RESISTDANCE”. That was definitely a Message of Hope, and at that moment the name of the project came out! This word contained multiple meaning: the resistance of the dance floor, the resistance of the club culture, the resistance of music, the resistance of people.

From all this ResistDance was born, a series of analog photos shot between the end of October 2020 and January 2021.

Published on:

Faith 04 - Printed Summer Issue 2021