Stephanie Gengotti
italian version

“I was born crying while everyone laughed, I will die laughing while everyone cries.” (Jim Morrison)

Forever…me, is a project about memory and mementos, what you want to leave about yourself and what will accompany you on the journey towards eternity.

The protagonists of these surreal portraits have chosen a simple, instantaneous route to give themselves immortality: a photograph. With almost unaware malice they get in front of the camera and, betraying all promise of naturalness, they try to show their best to us and leave us a happy memory, a small cameo of their earthly transit. They are of various ages, their looks are various but they have a single desire: behind a narcissistic doubt, an apparent attempt of self-celebration, is concealed the desire to give positive energy to whoever is left, through their eyes still proud, joyful and full of vitality. Everyone searches for beauty in its multiple components, from elegance to irony, to put the sadness of disappearance, of loss, at a distance. Thus Giuliana wears a Chanel dress that has been in the closet for thirty years, waiting for the fateful day. Virginie wants to look like a movie star. Christiane won’t give up a refined hat. Giuseppe feels at ease in the rigor of a military uniform. Livia who wanted to live in the 50’s to be a pin-up girl, finally makes her dream come true. And Alice with her red curls and childish fair skin, takes us completely away from the kingdom of Hades and drags us into Wonderland.

This project doesn’t claim to open any philosophical investigation, any eschatological reflection through photography. Nevertheless, lightly, it wants to create dialogue between memory, death and eternity. Walking along the tree-lined paths of a cemetery, we were surprised a thousand times at the tomb of someone unknown, staring at that oval, that small photo that somehow encloses the entire universe of a person. Jim Morrison wrote “I was born crying while everyone laughed, I will die laughing while everyone cries.”
Forever… me, does not want tears, it wants to get a smile from whoever looks at us and is crossed by the exuberance of its protagonists.
(Text by Pamela Piscicelli)