la terra che connette

The project

SPOT (english version)

Abstract

The Saluzzo area is the third biggest fruit production area in Italy. Up to twenty years ago it used to attract workers from southern Italy, but since the ‘90s it has provided working opportunities for people of different nationalities through the migratory waves that have crossed Italy, especially Albanians, Moroccans, Romanians, Poles and Chinese. The last few years have witnessed the arrival of seasonal migrants that are already living in Italy. Most of these African labourers that came to look for work in the Saluzzo area are from Mali, Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso and Senegal. All of them have a permit of stay, but as a consequence of the economic crisis some have lost their job in factories or in building companies, whilst others have already been working for many years as seasonal agricultural labourers. Others were hosted in special structures created to welcome people escaping from the North African emergency.

La Terra che connette is a documentary work that compares and contrasts immigrants and locals.
As we narrate their interrelations we try to bring into the open their common problems, their stories and the web of connection between the phenomena of migration, this specific territory (the Saluzzo area) and the present economic, social and cultural crisis.

La Terra che connette involves the people that live or cross these land, and aims at creating an opportunity to reflect on this territory, as well as the prospective strength that can allow it to free itself from its crystallized vision of itself. Today every discourse that is limited to the local is destined to drawn in the ocean of commonplaces. In an interconnected world one can be narrow-minded and hostile only through ideology or misjudgement. Politics and institutions have the difficult task to mediate between global movements of people and local realities; La Terra che connette is part of this political, social and cultural process.

We are convinced that a “right” understanding of the complexity of a specific territory needs independent knowledge tools that can contribute to the well being of the different communities and to their capacity to acknowledge each other in an active citizenship dynamic. A documentary on the situation of migrants and locals can help us becoming aware of what they are experiencing, and can create the proper time and space to re-elaborate this awareness, beyond ideology and sterile militant positions. At the same time it’s a project proposal that, starting from a specific territorial project, can create new ideas, tools and strategies of national and international relevance.

This project’s immediate outcome is a web series of short documentaries that can be seen through the blog and its final result is a film-documentary destined to festivals and television. But a cinematographic production is not our only objective, since we aim at offering different knowledge tools in an historic and political time when a dialogue between the different actors of society is of extreme importance. Local and global realities are now living side by side and have become impossible to tell apart. Through the use of an empathic dynamic such as the language of cinematography, we aim at having a significant impact with our promotional campaign, for example holding workshops in schools and with the immigrant population, making use of the material we have collected in the blog. We will also create exhibitions and events that can contribute to the birth of similar initiatives other than our own. La Terra che connette is a social and cultural start up that can be reproduced in many other contexts.

This blog will host a series of episodes in the form of short web documentaries, and it will be a means to share impressions, comments and pictures. These will be posted on the social network and will also narrate, with parallel languages, La Terra che connette.

Your comments, suggestions and ideas are mostly welcome.

Andrea Fenoglio, filmmaker

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