(The South-Bound Arrow)

A railway does not allow deviations, by definition: its direction is marked, fixed, its stops established by an unalterable path. As a train slowly moves forward, a dimention promoting encounters is created by sharing the same space, either sitting next to each other or facing each other. In the old days, as the train known as Freccia del Sud (“The South-Bound Arrow”) left Milan, it was the longest internal-distance train travelling through Italy: it would run for almost 1,600 kilometers between Milan and Agrigento. The trip would take almost 22 hours, when all went exceptionally smoothly. On December 12th, 2011 the national railway service Trenitalia stopped the last long-distance connection running between Northern and Southern cities. In 2005 there were 56 such trains, now only 10 are left, but these do not go any further than Rome. In order to encourage the use of the new high-speed trains frecciarossa, (“RedArrow”), those symbolic trains of emigration that helped unifing Italy disappeared. A piece of Italian history leaves forever, in another blow to the pockets of many Southern emigrant workers and Trenitalia employees. Even in its last trips, the old train maintained its symbolic connotation: a photograph of what Italy was and still is: a country that painstakingly tries to bridge the long distances within its boot.

Project presented in Giovane Fotografia Italiana #01 | CITIZENSHIP

Ritratto di Cristina Panicali


(Carpi, IT, 1981)

After graduating in Communication Sciences (2005) she attended the Institute of Photography and Integrated Communication (ISFCI) in Rome and continues to train with various workshops. She works in the photographic field, from weddings to interior design and to reportage, and in the social field, collaborating with various associations in Italy and abroad. She has also worked as Media Trainer for young people in Italy, the Pacific and Mozambique. During the last years she dedicated to participatory photography, using PhotoVoice technique, for different association in Emilia Romagna and Marche. Her reportages in Africa, Asia and the Balkans were published in various newspapers, including East, Carta, Left, Panorama, Internazionale, Il Reportage and Jeune Afrique . In 2010 Some of her shots of the project “Percorsi Binari” were acquired by the Fondazione Fotografia of Modena as the result of winning the award Bando Special linked to Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio in Modena.