Bushes, caves and sinkholes. This is the wild Carso region, that goes from the plateau behind Trieste across the boundaries to the very East of the Italian peninsula.
The project “Red Land ” by Mariagrazia Beruffi won the Lodi Festival of Ethical Photography for the best portfolio of the ITALY PHOTO AWARD 2019.
The Carso region is a harsh land, moved by strong contrasts and frequently hit by a violent wind named Bora. In the collective memory, it recalls both bloody memories and a sense of mystery, maybe because this is a natural place for hiding someone who wants or has to disappear; a transgressive place to practice esoteric rites and clandestine love.
In reality, the people living here are very special and strongly linked to old, simple values, based on the significance of home and the concept of family. They consist in autochthonous minorities (Slovenians in Italy and Italians in Slovenia and Croatia) whose identity is not linked to a nation, but to a territory. These places are marked by a difficult history, with over a hundred years of disputed boundaries and finally suffered both from those who escaped and those who remained.
Now what once was a border is no more a separation, but a bond that is constantly crossed for many reasons and different lives. For many this still means research for memories of what and where once was a place called home.
Wandering, meeting people and shooting photographs have been the means to enter a complex and rough reality, rooted into an essential agricultural economy, yet sufficient to anchor it to its poor and red land.