Linosa – Luana Rigolli

Linosa is an island just 5.5 square kilometers large, located 160 km from Sicily and 145 km from Tunisia. It can be only reached by sea, an eight hour ferry from the town of Porto Empedocle in Sicily. It can also be reached from the neighbour island of Lampedusa with a two hour ferry. No doubt it is the “most isolated” island in Italy.

I realised that the young people of the island live their community with a continuous sense of a split personality; on one hand they want to move away to live a normal life, on the other hand they want to remain there to keep their relations with family.

Isolation worsens year after year and has a negative impact on the overall island economy. Some years ago the old pier was closed for safety reasons; ships must now dock in the new pier, which is hard to reach on rough seas, typically from October to March.

This situation can stop any communication for days. As a consequence everyone, the younger generation mostly, live waiting for the three summer months when the island is full of tourists and the connections with Sicily are more stable. I’ve frequented Linosa several times, especially in the winter months, photographing the slow life on this island.

I was born in Italy, in 1983. I studied civil engineering, but at the end of it I realised that I would prefer to document what was around me – rather than to modify it with works of engineering. So I started to photograph stories with a particular focus on historical research and the interaction of human and landscape.

I am also a founding member of the Dieci x Dieci Contemporary Photography Festival in Gonzaga, Italy.

luanarigolli.it / instagram.com/luanarigolli