The sea below the sky


‘In his long and prestigious career as a photographer, Mario De Biasi had never before been given a chance to focus his lens on fishing and fishermen. Recently however, the C.I.R.S.PE. – Centro Italiano Ricerche e Studi per la Pesca – asked him to stage a photographic exhibition on the fascinating world of fishing in Italy. The images of the exhibition ‘A sea below the sky’ were shot by Mario de Biasi especially for the exhibition during the months of October and November 1997 in Calabria, Sicily, Campania, Sardinia, Liguria, Veneto and Romagna and represent a unique and original view of the fishing world. De Biasi became involved in this research project first of all as a human being and then as a professional photographer, communicating through his richly-detailed images the positiveness and originality of a job strongly tied to the tradition and culture of mankind. ‘It was real pleasure for me – says De Biasi – to shoot the picturesque patterns of the nets, the unusual shapes of the bollards, the imaginative names of the boats, the structures of the boats under construction, the lucky charms, the woven ropes, the bright colours of the vessels, the symmetric arrangement of the fish in the boxes, the noisy movement of the crabs and fast twisting eels, the eye of the octopus or the tail of a lobster , all close up’. The exhibition documents the different fishing world of the Italian coast compared to that of northern Europe, highlighting aspects of the fishermen’s lives, their early-morning outings from the ports and late-afternoon return, the fishing techniques and equipment used. The very organisation of fishing, with a high percentage of fishing cooperatives, guarantees and ensures a profound sense of solidarity and mutual aid between human beings and this stands out in the photos, in the worn, yet open and cordial faces of the fishermen. These photos offer a lively and intense glimpse of this profession, the importance of which for the Italian economy is often underestimated.’


23 Agosto 1998 - 29 Agosto 1998


Exhibitions Meeting Exhibitions