vietato lamentarsi, vietato pensate, vietato piangere with Giulia Bersani

The cameras's eye blinks. Time is stopped, the moment captured. Giulia Bersani quietly collects raw emotion from intimate moments in other peoples lives.

Giulia grew up in Milan, where she studied photography at Bauer and still lives with her family. She has dedicated herself to analogue photography, describing photography as part of her language; without which I could not express myself. I had the opportunity to spend a weekend with her at CAMERECHIARE and I can honestly say that Giulia's photography speaks more than she does. But, it's not only her photography that speaks, Giulia creates books, every handmade copy telling the stories of her photographs and the people in them.

"This is my new book. It was born impulsively from a personal need (to prove myself the power and the importance of my emotions, the positive and negative ones). Every copy is completely and personally handmade."

Giulia Bersani

It took me a while to translate her book, which I will always cherish, but now I think I could recognize Giulia's handwriting anywhere. Her stories are simple, yet deeply moving; a window into her mind and how she observes other people.

After the event I corresponded with Giulia via Facebook and asked her these questions. I've included Giulia's original response in Italian - my translation skills are still somewhat lacking.

Why did you choose analog photography? 

By chance. In the beginning the problem was that I had no money to buy a digital SLR, so I tried analog that usavamio dad in the 80's and I photographically formed using the film . Now, out of habit or taste, I just can not go digital .

Perché hai scelto la fotografia analogica? Per caso. All’ inizio il problema era che non avevo soldi per comprare una reflex digitale, allora ho provato quella analogica che usavamio papà negli anni 80 e mi sono formata fotograficamente usando la pellicola. Adesso, per abitudine o per gusto, non riesco proprio a passare al digitale.


How old were you when you discovered a passion for photography ? 18 years , I was the ' senior year of high school and I enrolled in the photography course to earn college credit .

Quanti anni avevi quando hai scoperto la passione per la fotografia? 18 anni, facevo l’ ultimo anno di liceo e mi sono iscritta al corso di fotografia per guadagnare crediti scolastici.

What influences your photography? Mainly my personal life. Then also the stories of others, what I see in the street and on the internet, the work of other young photographers in which I find myself.

Cosa influenza la tua fotografia? Principalmente la mia vita personale. Poi anche le storie degli altri, quello che vedo per strada e su internet, il lavoro di altri giovani fotografi in cui mi ritrovo.

What influenced you to create handmade books? I've always been very attached to my childhood , and as a child I loved to create books and write stories with the material that was in the house . I think that create an object directly by hand and get it into someone else's hands is a gesture with a huge expressive power . Plus I love the simplicity and it was beautiful to say " I want to do a book ; Now I take paper, scissors and pen and I do."

Cosa ti ha influenzato di creare libri fatti a mano? Sono sempre rimasta molto legata alla mia infanzia e da bambina mi piaceva molto creare libri e scrivere storie con il materiale che trovavo in casa. Penso che creare un oggetto direttamente a mano e farlo arrivare nelle mani di qualcun altro sia un gesto con una potenza espressiva enorme. In più adoro la semplicità ed è stato bellissimo dire “voglio fare un libro; adesso prendo carta, forbici e penna e lo faccio”.

What do you want people to take away from your work ? I believe that everyone is capable of reflecting in my photographs . Everyone can find a part of his human experience interpreting and letting influence . They really like the ' idea that my point of view may come in contact with the others , giving feelings and emotions are different each time ; It is beautiful when people thank me because looking at my pictures feel less alone.

Cosa vuoi che la gente a prendere lontano dal tuo lavoro? Credo che ognuno si possa rispecchiare nelle mie fotografie. Ognuno può trovarci una parte della sua esperienza umana interpretandole e lasciandosi suggestionare. Mi piace molto l’ idea che il mio punto di vista possa entrare in contatto con quello degli altri, regalando sensazioni ed emozioni ogni volta diverse; è bellissimo quando le persone mi ringraziano perché guardando le mie foto si sentono meno sole.

What motivates you to continue to take photographs? I do not need motivation, it is a necessity. I can not help it because now the photograph is part of my language; without it I could not express myself and I would feel incomplete.

Cosa ti motiva a continuare a prendere fotografie? Non ho bisogno di motivazione, è una necessità. Non riesco a farne a meno perché ormai la fotografia fa parte del mio linguaggio; senza di questa non riuscirei ad esprimermi e mi sentirei incompleta.

Giulia, thank you for answering my questions. This has been my first interview with a photographer exhibiting at NOPANIC Gallery - hopefully it won't be much longer before I can conduct an interview in Italian. I love your work and will follow your career with great interest. You have a unique ability to capture moments so perfectly.


Giulia's website can be found here.