IA AAEAO EAO / Project title AVES MEI
digital photography, hahnemuhle museum etching paper
Dozing beneath the veil of Maya, we collapse into an imaginary experience inside a prison of the mind.
According to his own interpretation of natural habitats, the man painted the walls of these cages in the attempt to create a fictitious reality, which can deceive the winged creatures imprisoned in the inside into believing they live in a true yet intangible world.
After a period spent in the midst of thousands of sounds, my wish was to photograph silence. Wandering, I reached the Bronx Zoo, where I could walk around freely and photograph for hours. I needed to create friction among my emotions. Since childhood, I had always refused to visit zoos because they made me feel sad. But there, I experienced a sense of freedom that made me feel serene. I was like suspended in a dimension between earth and heaven, where my only connection to reality was through simple and primitive sounds.
No sounds other than cries with which both people and birds made their way into the world; nothing more than simple syllables, such as ‘da-da’ or ‘ma-ma’. Shot after shot, the jingle of baby talks reached my ears. Whether in captivity or in liberty, the mysterious song of birds leaves an indelible trace, which like cages set into a wall, will eternally preserve the lives and voices of those who experienced them.
Each photograph was taken in a section of the Bronx Zoo in New York City called ‘The World of Birds’. Every photo shows a different birdcage. Then, the idea was to associate these cages to the different places I used to live around the world. The titles of these photos were created by extrapolating the vowels contained in the words of the different addresses where I used to live at until today. These vowels represent what has remained of each place, just as memories. All these places have been to me sometimes like nests and sometimes like cages. There I was able to ‘grow-up’ my ideas, and my thoughts have been more or less free, depending on the different characteristics of each of those places. This project is meant to be an expression of repressed feelings of freedom – such as the ones birds experience in their cages.
( Each photograph represents the real interior of the cages. )
Giorgia Valli was born in Bergamo in 1985.
She graduated at IED Milan in 2008. She has exhibited in solo and group exhibitions in Italy and abroad. In 2016 she exhibited for the first time in the USA at the Kopeikin Gallery in Los Angeles, publishing her first photo book with Nazraeli press. Later she became part of the collections of several American museums, such as LACMA, Center for Creative Photography in Arizona, National Gallery of Arts in Washington DC.
She currently lives and works in Italy.