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Stefano Gili


When one first arrives on Pantelleria, one is almost disoriented: the loneliness, the crumbling buildings, the impervious, uneven roads of uncertain finish; everything on Pantelleria initially instils a strange disquiet.

There are spaces in which one is afraid to walk because there is nothing around, not even a telephone signal, places in which one does not understand whether, after the ascent, the path will continue downhill or whether we will encounter a precipice overhanging the sea.

Little by little, however, we begin to fall in love with these spaces, because they are capable of telling us about ourselves, about what we have been, as if the island, in its 5,000 years of life, had already seen us treading that land, admiring the vastness of the sea as far as the eye can see, chasing our thoughts in the wind.

They are silent spaces, where you can be alone with your thoughts.

Silence on Pantelleria is the most fearsome but also the most ancestral thing that can still exist, it is a heavy torpor, a heavy blanket that falls over everything, especially at night, and makes the world out there surreal.

So those spaces bordering on silence tell of a life that once existed and one that still slowly flows there; just contemplating them calms us and slows our pace, and that is when the magic happens, amidst crumbling buildings, rusty chains, dust and earth, we find that inner voice that we no longer hear in the chaos of our cities, a voice that tells us that, once upon a time, we called that island home.

Stefano Gili

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