Pompeii as you’ve never seen it… in photos

Italian photographer Luigi Spina publishes a beautiful book called “Pompeii Interiors” with photos of the famous archaeological site taken in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic.

An abandoned room in Pompeii near Naples.  (ERICH GEDULDIG / MAXPPP)

in Pompeian interiorsit highlights the incredible colors of the frescoes, the beauty of the ruins, the volumes of the houses… The Italian Luigi Spina photographed Pompeii near Naples in a very specific context of the pandemic, when the city was empty. .

The first thing that struck the photographer was the silence, “deafening silence, a little intimidating”, recalls Luigi Spina, they met in a cafe in Rome. Armed with his “Hasselblade”, cameras that went to the moon, and adorned with that incredible luxury that is time, he captures the colors of the frescoes, as in this “domus”, nicknamed the “house of the hunt”. “There’s a huge wall with hunting scenes. For a moment we have the impression that everything is beginning to move, with shades of yellow, green, blue“, says Luigi Spina.

Suspended moments

Luigi Spina spent his days in Pompeii from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. and saw that night had fallen on the site. “Perhaps I felt the presence of the volcano (Vesuvius) even more strongly, you can see it standing out in this twilight”describing.

In a city without tourists, in a world in the midst of a pandemic, the small moments of everyday life shared with the guardians of Pompeii take on a special meaning for the photographer. “I remember the coffee we had at the beginning of the afternoon with them, in the utter emptiness, the smell of coffee. The certainty was there, at least in that moment,” says the photographer.

Pompeii tells us that everything can disappear in an instant, thinks Luigi Spina. He captured what remained in this wonderful book, Pompeian interiorsthe French version of which is published by 5 Continents (150 euros).

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