According to the United Nations’ World drug report 2021, “drug use killed almost half a million people in 2019, while drug use disorders resulted in 18 million years of healthy life lost, mostly due to opioids. In 2020, around 275 million people have used drugs, up by 22% from 2010.”
The devastating effects of drug use have not been stemmed since last century to date. To date there are not reliable solutions.

San Patrignano is an Italian long-term drug recovery residential community, considered among the largest worldwide. 26,000 people hosted since 1978, more than 4,000 years of prison converted in rehabilitation programs in 25 years.

These photos are part of an ongoing project on the rehabilitation, educational and personal journey of residents. Since 2021, I spent on average two days per month with residents who work in the kennels, one of the 35 activity areas of the community.

At every moment residents face their own limits and frailties. The "senior" residents, nearing the end of their journey, try to help the "young" ones to recognize the mechanisms of addiction and get away from the cage of the negative habit. Sharing emotions is the key.

For the first year, letters represent the only contact with the outside. Sometimes is not simple to read them, expecially the first ones. There are often human relations to be reconstructed, or, at least, to be understood, particularly within the family. It is hard to overcome anger, so writing a letter means finding the courage to be true, accepting one's own and others' weaknesses, breaking free.

It is a hard, deep and long fight with not predictable ending. But it’s worth it, Always.

  • Country of Origin:
  • Student Project:
  • Marilyn Stafford FotoReportage Award 2023
    June 30, 2023
    Honorable mention
  • Helsinki Photo Festival 2023
    July 1, 2023
    Winner with other 40 Artists
  • Emergentes 2023 - International Photography Award Encontros da Imagem
    July 1, 2023
    Selected for Emergentes 2023 -Portfolio review
  • URBAN Photo Awards 2023 - ongoing
    July 1, 2023
  • 13° portfolio dello Strega
    June 1, 2022
    Best portfolio
  • 17th Milano Photofestival
    October 30, 2022
    Best portfolio
  • 18° FotoArte in Portfolio
    July 1, 2022
    Second portfolio
  • Milano Photo Festival
    October 10, 2021
  • One image to fight against digital inequality
    May 23, 2021
    Best image
  • Italian Street Photo Festival
    January 4, 2021
    best single image
Artist Biography

Born in 1972, I have a technical background and I use to say that photography is my unpaid second job.

As a teenager I began to spend time in the darkroom.

In 2017 I took up the camera once again.

Over the years I partecipated in workshops and courses on photography, visual arts and the history of photography.
Currently, while continuing my studies, I am working on two long term projects: "A Letter From Home", about an Italian drug recovery residential community and "Yes, we do", with which I try to close the gender gap by photographing women doing jobs or activities "normally" reserved for men.

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Artist Statement

Moved by strong emotions, humanity, fear and fragility, I focus on documentary photography and social topics.
The connections, the meanings of the facts is what I am looking for, in the attempt to grasp better the complexity of the reality. My images often give no answers, they have none.

I follow invisible lines that often lead me to build relationships in the edges of the social fabric. By sharing the field of their own personal fights, photographer and photographed subject become each other's medium. There are no losers, the game becomes perfect.