Castro, Apulia region, second half of the 15th century. The coasts of this small village are constantly under Turkish pillaging. Six hundred years later, Alice Caracciolo and Cemre Yeşil explore the same area, inspired by the legend of the Turkish Wife.
The authors investigate the mystical and spiritual value of stones, silent guardians of our past, such as a watching tower that protects this fertile land against Turkish raids. Stones are eroded into sand, that will be pushed by winds into the unknown. Primal rocks and caves hold onto their secrets. Stones come to life through humans who have given them with value, as part of collective history. Piet[r]à (“Stone/Mercy”) is also a story of immigration. It is a woman, it is the people of Castro and the Turkish people. These characters have a world of the past belonging to a world in the present.
The process of integration in Piet[r]à is constantly interrupted by various factors: popular beliefs, ancient customs and traditions, anthropological institutions still well rooted today. Are women “objects” of exchange, contention, or redemption from sins? And in the end, who are the se strangers? Piet[r]à unveils a story whose roots lie in the search for contact among people, constantly interrupted by the impossibility of accepting compromises: history repeats itself, even centuries later.
Project presented in Giovane Fotografia Italiana #06 | ACTIVISM
Since 2017 Alice and Cemre have been working together to promote the project Piet[r]à, commissioned by Sezione Turismo Regione Puglia.
She graduated in History of Art at University of Pisa and in Photography and Visual Design at Naba in Milan. In 2019 she attended the Visual Arts and Contemporary Culture program at PIA Studio, in Lecce.
Her work “Piet[r]à” is exhibited at Organ Vida International Photography Festival curated by Marina Paulenka and Lea Vene, at Les Rencontres de la Photographie in Arles curated by Brad Feuerhelm and Natasha Christia and at Fotografia Europea curated by Daniele De Luigi.
She took part in artist residences in Italy and abroad and she works as art director of LO.FT and Collettivo FAC.
Cemre Yeşil is a Turkish photographer living in Istanbul. Her BA is in photography; she also holds an MA in visual arts at Sabanci University.
She was nominated in 2014 for the Paul Huf Award and in 2016, the ING Unseen Talent Award, the Lead Awards and for Prix du Livre d’Auteur de Les Rencontres d’Arles, 2016. She lectures on photography in Istanbul at Bilgi University and Koç University. Recent publications include OCC Retrospective, 2014 in “Orta Format Magazine”, The House We Used to Call Home, 2014, For Birds’ Sake, in collaboration with Maria Sturm – La Fabrica, Piet[r]à, 2017. She is the founder of FiLBooks, a space dedicated to photo books, artist talks and workshops in Karaköy, Istanbul.
Her book “Hayal & Hakikat: A Handbook of Forgiveness & A Handbook of Punishment” was shortlisted for the Photo Aperture Book Awards 2020 – Photobooks of the Year Category.