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Lunigiana

Ponte della Cresa: Pontremoli by Night

Pontremoli (Italy). This is a self-promotional post: I hope I won’t seem narcissist, but in these days – until the 7th of August 2016 – I’m participating with three photos at an exhibition on Pontremoli and the Lunigiana region. One of these photos is this one posted here.

The photo (already posted in this blog one year ago, that time in black and white)  shows the very old bridge named “Ponte della Crësa”, which initially was built with wood in the 1300s, and it was reinforced – as it is today – during the 15th century. In the background, two landmarks of Pontremoli: the Bell Tower (popularly known as the “Campanone”) and the Cathedral’s Dome. The old town center of Pontremoli extends over a spit of land between the confluence of the Verde and Magra river, and this bridge is one of the city’s symbols. The name itself – Pontremoli – comes from the latin “Pons Tremulus“, where Pons is the latin word for bridge, whereas Tremulus is an old name for the poplar, the material used to build the bridge. According to another interpretation, “Tremulus” might stem from the fact that the bridge tended to shake. This is to say that Pontremoli has somehow built its history on bridges, and bridges themselves are the subjects of my photos selected for this exhibition.

For those who will be around Pontremoli – in the northern part of Tuscany – in these days, the exhibition will be held at the Galleria d’Arte Ex-Macelleria, Via Garibaldi 27 – 50027 Pontremoli (Massa Carrara). Opening hours: 10.30 / 13.00 and 16.30 / 19.30.

 

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Street Decoration (via Ricci Armani)

Pontremoli (Italy). Just another image from a night photo-walk around Pontremoli with a Leica Q camera, shooting at f/1.7 and high ISO values (I must say that this is a wonderful camera with a great lens!).

Well, honestly I don’t have too much to write this time… except that I liked to see how even a simple small plant hung on a wall along a street, can be a nice way to decorate it. So the minute(s) you are saving with a short post to read, can be used to watch the photo longer and maybe to surf more my photo-blog 🙂

Ok, I need a holiday… (few days more!)

 

 

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The Old Bridge of Pontremoli by Night

Pontremoli (Italy). Another photo of Pontremoli, and another photo with my new Leica Q camera. Last Saturday I went out for a night photo-walk with the double aim of photographing Pontremoli with few people around, but also to test this camera with low light conditions and therefore at high ISO values.

This is the result… The photo shows the very old bridge “Ponte della Crësa”, which initially was built with wood (1300s) and it was reinforced – as it is today – during the 15th century. In the background, the “Campanone” (Bell Tower) and the Cathedral’s Dome.

What else can I say? The Leica Q performs excellently at full aperture (f/1.7) and high ISO. A great “travel companion” for my next destinations!

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Landscape of Pontremoli

Pontremoli (Massa Carrara, Italy). This landscape photo has been taken from a privileged position: the top of the bell tower in the center of Pontremoli, in the Lunigiana territory (more or less the part of Tuscany adjacent to Parma province and Liguria, extended in correspondence of the Magra river’s basin).

Pontremoli is a small, enchanting town with a long and surprising history. Although it’s small and not particularly famous (especially when compared with much more popular destinations in Tuscany, as the towns around Florence or Siena), it is worth a deep and accurate visit, better with a local guide that can help you to discover and better appreciate its artistic heritage.

I have part of my family’s origins here, and probably for this reason I’m always happy when I return to Pontremoli – and I do it whenever I can. Coming here is like finding part of myself, of my ancestors, and feeling the responsibility of keeping a sort of tradition handed down from father to son. Probably I feel the “sense of having roots” particularly important because I’m travelling frequently and I lived in different cities; and maybe one day I will come to live here… who knows?

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The Old, Massive and Symbolic Ponte Stemma in Pontremoli

Pontremoli (Italy). I already posted a photo mentioning my participation – with three photos – at an exhibition on Pontremoli and the Lunigiana region until the 7th of August 2016 at the Art Gallery “Ex-Macelleria“. I expressly created the tag “Pontremoli Photographic Exhibition 2016” to see all of them with one click…

As mentioned in another post, Pontremoli takes its name’s root from the Latin word “Pons“, bridge. For this reason, I selected – among many photos in my archive – three images of three different but representative bridges, all of them captured by night. This one here shows of a very massive bridge, called Ponte del Casotto, which is placed at the confluence between the two rivers, Magra and Verde. It’s a very old stone bridge: the original structure dates back to the end of the 14th century and it was reinforced in 1568. This is the same bridge that appears in the city’s insignia (in Italian: “stemma”) and for this reason it’s usually known locally as “Ponte Stemma”.

For those who will be around Pontremoli – in the northern part of Tuscany – in these days until the 7th of August, the exhibition will be held at the Galleria d’Arte Ex-Macelleria, Via Garibaldi 27 – 50027 Pontremoli (Massa Carrara). Opening hours: 10.30 / 13.00 and 16.30 / 19.30.

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Pontremoly by Night (Vietata L’Affissione)

Pontremoli (Massa Carrara, Italy). Yesterday late afternoon I was flying from Rome to Milan: let me say, it is one of the best (or at least one of the most original) way to visit Italy, especially if you chose the right-window seat (normally the “F” one) and if the sky is clear, as it was yesterday. The plane flew along its normal route, which means it followed the coast of the Tirrenian Sea from Lazio to Tuscany, and then headed to Milan. If you know a bit the geography of Italy, it will be easy to recognize landmarks like Pisa, Livorno (Leghorn), Lucca and the Versilia coast.

Anyway, when the plane was over La Spezia, it pointed directly toward Milan and flew very close to a small town called Pontremoli, I recognized it because I have there some of my family roots. I have spent there most of my childhood’s summers,and still today a piece of my heart belongs to that place and to its neighborhoods. Here you can see some of the photos that I have been taking around Pontremoli for the past years.

During the few minutes during which I flew above Pontremoli and the mountains around, somehow I thought about this photo, which was taken some days ago (with my Ricoh GR) during a pleasant night walk along the old part of the town. When I was back home, although it was quite late, I decided to develop it and to post it here in my blog. It happens to me sometimes: a place brings me back a memory to which I associate a photo, and somehow to “complete” that moment I think that there’s nothing better than reconsider that photo and post it here in my blog. It’s a sort of “fixing” something for the future, since from now on, when I will watch this photo, I will indirectly go back to my yesterday’s flight: isn’t it weird fantastic? This is another one of those magic features about photography, in my opinion.

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Bagnone in Lunigiana

Bagnone (Italy). Let me start this post with a disclaimer: I’m always pretty skeptic when I read posts or articles titled with a ranking, such as “the 10 best places to go…” or “the top 5 destinations for…“. I know these titles are useful just for SEO rankings. However, an Italian on-line travel magazine has recently published a post with (translated to English) the “list of small towns that that seem to come from a fairy-tale“.

I was pleasantly surprised to see the lovely Bagnone (in Lunigiana, the northern part of Tuscany) mentioned in this list together with Bibury in England, Hallstat in Austria, Rothenburg in Germany and Gasadalur in Denmark. Of course, these kind of lists cannot be complete and thorough enough; furthermore, the decision to include or to exclude a location is normally left to the opinion of the writer (there isn’t an absolute criteria to compile these rankings). For this reason, I perfectly know that it’s a nonsense talking about Bagnone (and the others) only and simply referring to this list.

However, reading the article made me remember that I had somewhere in my archive a photograph of Bagnone, and I took the opportunity to write this post and to publish this photo because – as I always say – Italy is like a necklace. There are big gems such as its main cities (Florence, Venice, Rome etc.); but there are equally important “small stones” represented by towns like Bagnone, rich of history, culture and traditions.

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