When the earth opened up into two, engulfing the normality of everyday life through the Central Apennines, tents, prefab homes and caravans have partially obviated the post-earthquake housing emergency in the medieval hamlets of central Italy. 

Meanwhile, thousands of evacuees have had to accept exile on the Adriatic coast where they await to be allocated emergency accommodation. More than one year after the devastating earthquakes that struck the regions of Lazio, Umbria, Marche and Abruzzo between August and November 2016, causing nearly 300 victims and around 40 thousand people to lose their homes, only a mere 8,57 percent of the rubble has been removed in the municipalities of the seismic crater. According to the National Council of Architects, Planners, Landscape Architects and Keepers: “The lack of proper prevention policies in Italy, highlighted after each major disaster, always leads to the adoption of emergency measures, due to the decision to spurn the culture of knowledge, of contrast and that of risk reduction”. There are still over two and half million tonnes of construction material in the four regions, mostly deriving from building demolition activities. This all impedes the resumption of most economic and social activities, forcing each person to reconsider the very nature of their own priorities according to habitable places. 

The sphere of private life has dwindled due to the forced sociability imposed by common spaces yet, in turn, this has had the effect of bringing people together who have experienced the same traumatic event, leading them to support and connect with each other. Some citizens have started associations and committees for the purpose of finding solutions to common problems. “Maiora premunt” (Greater things are pressing) is a personal project that documents how their way of living has evolved, between the changes in social life and the common spaces allocated to it, leading up to such changes in the very concept of the definition of “community”, and trying to put together the puzzle of the multiplicity of identities who live in those places.

MAIORA PREMUNT (2016-2017)