Exposure № 094: Baisakhi

Photographer Luca Napoli tells us about his series of photos on the Italian Sikh community:

“Every Year the Italian Sikh community arranges a big celebration of  “Baisakhi”, the feast of the harvest. There are two big Sikh communities in Italy. One in Brescia and the other smaller in a small village close to Reggio Emilia. I decided to visit the community in Brescia to photograph the celebration. After a few shots, I realized that I was portraying the event without any originality.”

“So I decided to approach each Sikh one at a time and ask them for a close-up portrait that just celebrates their people via the frankness of their glance. Just me and them.”

“In the end, I realized that the portraits had been triggered by the will (mine and theirs) to reduce the cultural distances between ‘Italian’ (let’s say, occidental) culture and Sikh culture.”


“Every portrait was preceded and followed by a friendly chat, and it was a very powerful way to understand how you can erase cultural distance so simply. So the message of the project is: there is no distance, no cultural difference. It’s actually all in our mind!”

* * * * *

Luca Napoli studied electronic engineering in Ferrara and then moved to Milan, where he currently works. He lives in a small town close to Milan. A self-taught photographer, he was influenced by his father, who always involved him during sessions of street photography in Taranto, his hometown. In 2006 he bought his first digital SLR and from then on he never abandoned photography. His most popular projects are Commuters and Taranto Vecchia. He is fascinated by reportage photography and always tries to put a story into a photo. Wonderful photos without a story are useless in his opinion, a pure aesthetic exercise.  His photos can be seen at Flickr.

His other contributions to Snake-Oil Cure can be found here.

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  1. Dr. Hurley’s Digest, Vol. II, Issue 29 « Dr. Hurley's Snake-Oil Cure

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