Photographic project “Suspended Mothers”

by Claudia Ravaldi
A. Fuccillo
A. Fuccillo

CiaoLapo Onlus presents ‘Suspended Mothers’, the new photographic project supported by us, in collaboration with the photographer Alessandra Fuccillo.The idea is to photograph mothers who volunteer to narrate with images what is difficult to hear with the ears .

Next appointment in Mestre, at the Civic Tower, in collaboration with the Anadiomene Cultural Association from 27 February to 6 March 2016.

Beauty is eternity that is contemplated in a mirror; and we are eternity, and we are the mirror.

(Khalil Gibran)

We are confronted with a society full of taboos, about birth and death.

Some of these taboos about living and dying heavily affect how each of us copes with an event of loss and receives support for that event. In our culture, the grief taboo is an unwritten rule, but normally applied. Thousands of women tell of the silence that surrounds them after a perinatal bereavement. So tight, that silence, that it becomes suffocating. From becoming a disease. Those who have lived the experience of mourning know how strong the need to narrate and narrate is, especially after the first moments of incredulity and confusion. Very often this need is not recognized, and is indeed strongly opposed. Because the taboo says that if you talk about it, then you feel bad. And, always the taboo says, that you cannot feel bad, and that you have to react, forget, give time to time.

And silence, meanwhile, works inside, and digs deep and twisted tunnels.

As we always say, we want to break this taboo by offering our frightened and distracted society some opportunity to look at bereaved parents in an original, non-stereotyped, authentic way. We believe that a good way to break the taboo surrounding prenatal and perinatal death is to use beauty. And it comes easy to us, because our stories of mourning were love stories even before. And love stories are, in themselves, beauty.

We have always promoted cultural awareness and psychosocial change also through art.

Photography is one of the many expressions that we can use to tell our stories, making them speakable.

We are therefore proud to promote our second photographic project, after Giovanni Presutti’s Piccoli Principi .

We proudly tell you about it through the words of the author, Alessandra Fuccillo .

“I am a mother like many others and what has happened to me has happened to many women. I have two wounds on my heart that have turned into beautiful musical notes, but even today I cannot touch and see my children every day, I can only imagine them, create space and serenity for them. However, I am grateful to all the people who helped me in this harsh and hard journey and the photographic project that follows is a restitution, a symbol of universal gratitude that I have towards all the people who have brought me back into the light after my children have vanished. I am a professional photographer and I mainly deal with family portraits and commercial and artistic photography. I founded the CameraOff photographic studio in 2009 by myself but today I can count on the collaboration of some valid colleagues. Since 2005 I have been exhibiting personal artistic projects. The Mothers suspended photographic project has as its main objective a photographic exhibition that will be able to travel around Italy and which will consist of about 30 images that will be printed on forex panels, which will measure approximately 70x50cm. The title stems from a first consideration that is often underestimated: we are already mothers, from the very moment we read the result of the pregnancy test and we are even though our children are no longer there. It was difficult for me to admit and understand it, because, like many other mothers, I felt inadequate for motherhood, I felt I was at fault, I felt as if “life could not flow inside me”, as one of the mothers told me. he actively collaborated on the project. I added the adjective “suspended” because it corresponds to the feeling I felt, first of all for the perceived emptiness and secondly for the opinions that came from the outside: I am referring to that sense of injustice that is felt when many give for granted that you are not a mother and that it will be enough to try again to forget; all the mothers who have lived my experience know how wrong these considerations are and how bad they hurt. I find extraordinary the rebirth capacity of the mothers I have known and who also give me hope to be able to face a new pregnancy and to carry it to term as well.

The idea is to photograph the mothers who volunteer having first heard the story; in all the dialogues I had with the mothers, some beautiful images were born that we together transformed into photographs. Not for all the resulting photography symbolizes a rebirth, because there is absolute freedom of expression. In my case, for example, there is a self-timer that refers to the moment of absolute emptiness experienced in the initial phase of mourning. Some shots were conceived and made in the studio, others at home and others in nature. Finally, this project aims to make me experience a catharsis and to offer other mothers the opportunity to experience the same feeling of “lightness” that I feel myself when I see myself from the outside in a photograph that brings with it pain, hope, beauty , life and death.”

Thanks to all, as always.

Update 16.02.16

The photographic project has been completed and will be presented on several occasions throughout Italy. The first appointment is in Mestre, at the Civic Tower, in collaboration with the Anadiomene Cultural Association from 27 February to 6 March 2016.

Madri Sospese Mestre
Suspended Mothers Mestre

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