After graduating in industrial design in 2005 from Milan’s Politecnico, Marco Dapino went on to earn a diploma in photographic techniques and language at cfp Bauer in 2007; while completing his education, he worked extensively with photographers and auteurs such as Gabriele Basilico and Bruno Di Bello. For the past few years, Marco has been carying forward extensive and diversified research work focusing primarily on the territory. Awarded the Premio Pezza in 2008, selected in 2009, won second prize at the Carlo Scarpa: Uno Sguardo Contemporaneo contest in 2011, finalist at Premio Combat 2014 e Premio Prina 2015. His works have been exhibited in Triennale di Milano, MuFoCo (Cinisello Balsamo), CISA Palladio (Vicenza), Fabbrica del Vapore (Milano), Museo Civico Fattori (Livorno), Malpensa Airport as well as being displayed at several art galleries like RBcontemporary, Spazio Farini, Studio Arte Cannaviello, T14contemporary, Galleria Belvedere and more. Some of his works are now part of collections and museums, such as the aforementioned MuFoCo, the CISA Palladio and Fondazione Malerba. Marco is currently working as free-lance photographer, doing not only research work, but also architecture, interior design and still life photography for company and magazine like Domus, Living-Corriere della Sera, AL Architetture Lombarde.
Unsung Heros, Quinlan 2017
Llamas, Interstates and Parking Lots
Montana, Interstate 90, northbound, just past the village of Drummond. A llama on a leash grazes on the roadside at the entrance of a ranch. From the driveway that leads to the property a pickup appears, a 1989 blue Dodge. At the steering wheel a man in his fifties who could be also twenty years younger; haunted eyes, thin and unkempt beard, a tattered baseball cap of the Billings Mustangs pulled down over his forehead. He pulls over and comes down without turning off the engine, spits a lump of chewed tobacco and from the back door pulls out a wooden sign, plants it next to the animal and with a spray paint he writes $5K.
Revving up, the Dodge drives away and disappears to the horizon. From the open windows resonates “Hippy Hippy Shakes,” a 1959 rock and roll hit by Chan Romero, Apache and Mexican blood, one of the few stars Montana can brag about, a kind of idol in this area. A few miles later the man parks the vehicle at a gas station and jogs towards the usual Subway. In North America parking lots are around 9.1 feet large and 20 feet long.
The 19 feet Dodge occupies one almost entirely.
A characteristic of the parking lots is the presence of concrete blocks that help the driver to align the vehicle. These are among the elements that recur in Marco Dapino’s photographs, along with the discolored line stripes that demarcate these species of spaces and various details of the parked cars: fenders, windshields, seats, doors, dashboards, stickers, tires and brake lights. Committed to witness the silent life of the parking lots – those moments of suspension devoid of human presence – the eye focuses fascinated on shadows and reflections that highlight scratches, dirt and imperfections of the motor vehicles, as if they were wrinkles and wounds of ordinary heroes whose deeds were never sung.
A frequent subject of disambiguation, the term “hero,” however, does not refer only to a brave person or a noble character who sacrifices for the common good, but it’s also the jargon used in New York City to call a type of sandwich powerfully stuffed with various ingredients. Submarine, Torpedo, Grinder and Hoagy are regional variations of the same, but Hero is perhaps the most common throughout North America today. On the ambiguity between “heroes” and “heros” ironically plays a sticker on the windshield of a car photographed by Dapino: Unsung Heros.
The all-American epopee of the road and the car, praised by writers, filmmakers and visual artists, strides more and more with what America is becoming. It is not surprising, therefore, to find a llama, a notoriously South American camelid, among the quintessential quadrupeds of the North West, the horses, as well as wear clothing made in Korea or consume “Heros” produced on an industrial scale by one of the more than 26K Subway restaurants in the United States. Within this mutating scenario, however, automobiles, and even more the way they are used, are symptomatic that something is hard to change, that is the proportional relationship between the human body and the immense surrounding space that makes of the roads of the American West not paths to cross but series of spots on which to stop.
website: Marco Dapino
copyright © Marco Dapino, all right reserved