An Italian photographer’s diary and thoughts
on his adoptive homeland
My fascination with Russia began when I was 12 years old. Back then, Russia was still part of the Soviet Union and for a short while in the spring of 1987 my mother entertained the though of taking a summer holiday with me to visit Leningrad. I was immediately hooked and started reading about this dream destination. That was “before the internet”, mind you, and just finding the material was, for a boy like me, a feat on its own. Alas, that trip never took place and I had to wait a quarter of a century before visiting that country, as a chaperone for the volunteer organisation AFS.
As luck would have it, though, in the meanwhile I met a truly wonderful Russian girl, which I am lucky enough to call my wife today, and together, after having lived in Austria, the UK and in Italy for a few years, we decided to move to Russia.
The first time was for three months, in the winter of 2014-2015, to see how I would cope with the (in)famous Russian winter. Suffice to say that I fell in love with the place and, most importantly, the people. So here we are now, having moved full time to Russia. In this blog I would like to try and tell you what I love here, what still shocks me, what makes me laugh or scratch my head in utter confusion.
After having worked for some 20 years as a corporate consultant, my move to Russia has also represented a change in career (a change in life, more likely) and my wife and I decided to pursue photography and the organisation of photo tours as our full time-job (after I spent one full year in a Russian university to learn this fascinating and incredibly complex language). That is why I will rely on pictures to tell my stories. Sometimes it will be (hopefully) well thought-out, composed and post-processed photos, other times it will be just “visual notes” I take and share, other times they might even be pictures I see that spark my interest and motivate me to tell a story.
When I write, I tend to write too much. So I will end this here and let the pictures and the post do the rest of the talking!