Valerio Spada. Gomorrah Girl

Sabrina, 11 y. old, “neomelodic” singer

Excelsior Boxe Gym, Marcianise, Caserta. Italian boxing champion, Viviana, 18 y. old

La Vela Rossa (The Red Sail), 7th floor, Scampia, Napoli

Mergellina, Napoli. Girl from Secondigliano

Secondigliano, Napoli. Woman under house arrest

Marcianise, Caserta. 11 y. old fighter. She has been training since she was five years old. She can hardly wait until she is able to fight in official matches when she reaches the age of 18

La Vela (The Red Sail), main corridor, Scampia, Napoli

Liceo Elsa Morante, Scampia, Napoli. Marianna, 18 y. old

“Gomorrah girl” is the title of a book by Italian photographer VALERIO SPADA that I discovered at Le Bal in Paris. It consists of a photographic documentary about adolescence, choices and chances in a land of Camorrah (the name of the Mafia in Naples).

On March 27th, 2004, Annalisa Durante, at the age of 14, was killed in Forcella, a Naples area under the Giuliano clan’s egemony. Annalisa and two of her friends were in front of her father’s small store, leaning on a car, talking with Salvatore Giuliano, a young Camorrah boss, then 22. Everything that happens next will take only seconds but will change many lives forever. Two killers on a motorcycle and uncovered faces pop out of a side street and open fire. Their aim is to kill Guiliano, who hides behind the car and starts to shoot back at them. The two friends of Annalisa find a getaway on the rigth side in a small street, while Annalisa runs in the opposite direction, where the killers are driving away. One of the three bullets fired by Giuliano hits Annalisa in the head, immediately she falls lifeless to the ground. Salvatore Giuliano was charged for homicide and is serving 24 years in prison.

VALERIO SPADA has taken this tragic event as an occasion and combined two different levels in Gomorrah Girl: On the one hand the official, factual police report with evidence for the crime, on the other hand a personal story that is captured in his own pictures. He shows how Annalisa’s father deals with his daughter’s death and portrays the world in which she lived and in which many other young girls and women still live. SPADA provides an open and honest report about the conditions in Naples. A place, where the people look to their future partly hopeful, partly resigned.

Gomorrah Girl is published by Cross Editions in 500 copies and is available via his website

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