ILARIA DI BIAGIO 2019-06-12T10:56:02+00:00

Project Description

ILARIA DI BIAGIO

— Homer in the Baltic —

“..the end of the deep-streamed Ocean, (…) shrouded in fog and clouds. Never does the bright Sun look at them with its rays …but a dreadful night burdens those wretched mortals.”

Odyssey 11.13-16,19

What if Homer’s Epic tales took place not in the Mediterranean around 1200 BC but rather much earlier, around 2000 BC and further North—in the seas of Northern Europe?
Felice Vinci’s thesis was first published in his book The Baltic Origins of Homer’s Epic Tales. With a strong geographical background, he states that the oral sagas that originated The Iliad and The Odyssey came from the Baltic regions, where the Bronze Age flourished in the 2nd millennium BC and many Homeric places can still be identified today. Vinci is actually not questioning history: he’s telling us that stories we simply believed to be epic, fanciful narratives of the ancients, could be instead the mirror of something which really happened, and for which no narration has come—the prosperous Nordic Bronze Age.

According to the theory, the blond seafarers who founded the Mycenaean civilization in the Aegean brought these tales from Scandinavia to Greece after the end of the Climatic Optimum, lasting from the Late Stone Age. Through many generations, they then preserved the memory of the heroic age and the feats performed by their ancestors in their lost Hyperborean homeland, until the oral tradition was put into written form around the 8th century BC.

I make no claim to confirm nor to refute Vinci’s thesis, but I find it intriguing to addresses how ‘history’ is transformed into ‘authority.’ I am interested in the process of artistic investigation, questioning topics assumed to be indisputable and taken often for granted.
Homer’s Epics tell stories which carry tremendous power to this day. They talk about the eternal wandering of mankind about doubt and perseverance. The strength, the emotions, the life of the characters is our own lives; we can hold these stories up as mirrors.

The project is on going. Started in 2017, estimated finish Spring 2020.
All the photos have been shot in the Baltic area: Finland, Denmark, Sweden and Norway in 2017/2018.

BIOGRAFIA

Ilaria Di Biagio (Firenze, 1984), fotografa ed artista visiva, è cresciuta in una vecchia casa di campagna, dove vive tuttora. Ha studiato Antropologia Visuale e Giornalismo d’Inchiesta a Roma, seguendo nel frattempo corsi di fotografia prima a Firenze e Roma e poi in Danimarca, presso la Danish School of Media and Journalism (2011). E’ qui che focalizza la sua attenzione verso un’indagine artistica più personale, lavorando a progetti che la coinvolgono da vicino. L’interesse alla ricerca sul territorio ed alla sua antropizzazione la porta a viaggiare molto in Italia e all’estero. Si specializza poi nel Nord Europa, dove negli ultimi anni è spesso tornata per il progetto “Omero nel Baltico | Cronache dai Mari del Nord”. Memorie e radici del passato sono un tema comune nelle sue opere, in cui indaga prevalentemente il rapporto che le persone hanno col proprio ambiente. Insieme al suo compagno Pietro Vertamy, proprio grazie a questa comune passione per l’esplorazione e le arti visive, nel 2015 crea “Around The Walk” laboratorio errante di indagine visuale che unisce progetti artistici e culturali alla mappatura di nuovi percorsi a piedi. Pubblica sulle maggiori testate nazionali – La Repubblica, Io Donna, Internazionale, D, Marie Claire, Gioia, Bell’Italia, La Nuova Ecologia, ed.Mondadori etc. Ha esposto al Festival Chobi Mela VII in Bangladesh, al Copenhagen Photo Festival, in una personale presso la Carillon Gallery a Dallas-Texas, al Perugia Social Photo Fest ed in vari luoghi in Italia. Attualmente lavora come free-lance in Italia e all’estero.

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