On 6 April 2009, the earthquake that struck L'Aquila devastated Onna. Most of the country's buildings collapsed and those still standing suffered serious damage. In Onna there was also the highest number of human victims of the earthquake, 41, about 15% of the population.
The hamlet of Onna is not shown on Google Maps: Onna exists only as a road, but not as a village or a hamlet of L’Aquila. Visually, the place can only be located on Google Maps by someone who has already visited it. Anyone attempting to find it by means of Google Maps alone would be faced with a very different view to the one viewed on their computer. The same thing happens using Google Street View, where the before and after images co-exist, generating a sort of spatial and temporal leap. Indeed, you need only take one step – backwards or forwards – to pass seamlessly from pictures taken before the earthquake to others taken later, forming an alternating sequence of panoramas of the countryside prior to the earthquake and the new village of Onna. The effect is that of a visual gap, on which I decided to focus my attention, using it as a metaphor of the shift of meaning associated with the vision filtered by the media.
"As with news, on television and in the press, the alliance of image and word has suffered a dislocation that affects the policies that generate its meaning and control. There is no evidence underlying the genealogy of the image. Its meaning is nothing but the projection we make of it as viewers." Joan Fontcuberta, Pandora's Camera (London: MACK, 2014)
Series developed during a residency in L'Aquila for the collective project Confotografia, 2013