Photos & Text by Marta Ilacqua

BA (Hons) Interaction Design Arts

This series of Polaroids focuses on Aeducilae, in Italian known as Edicole, which are small structures used as shrines: niches for sacred statues or images. These function as places of devotion for those who believe in the catholic religion. But also by placing them on the exterior walls of houses, they are ‘taking over the streets’, they are seen by everyone, believers or not, and they have become part of the Sicilian culture in general. Some are big, some are small, they are a very common sight all over Sicily.

I’ve chosen these as the subject of my documentation as I was working on a brief about frames. During the lockdown, I’ve had the opportunity to walk around and examine the frames that were present throughout my childhood, living in a very religious country such as Italy. After selecting the shots that would be part of my series, I started questioning whether the plastic look of the Polaroid wasn’t too ‘modern’ for these ancient frames. I focused on bringing our culture within the photos by rethinking the Polaroid’s frame to fit the subject and taking inspiration from the crocheted doilies very present in our houses. This was done to better represent the cult of these architectonic structures whose function is as places of cult themselves. The last image is an extra addition, with a difference within the series itself, as it is not mounted nor carved into a wall, but is placed on the rocks in the sea, where the area takes it’s name from another sacred symbol, ‘Croce di Mare’.

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