MY TOMORROW – BOOK
This book tells the story of a film but also concerns itself with a woman, a city and two photographers.
The film was once entitled “Metaphysics for Monkeys,” but no one liked the title and so they changed it, they gave it a snappier and more accessible name, and now we find ourselves nostalgic for the metaphysics. The woman is film director, Marina Spada, who as of years has been weaving delicate and intense relations between herself and her protagonists, her stories and her city.
The city is Milan, splendid in her eyesores, as she is splendid in her attractions. A generous city, exploited, under-loved, exhausted, but always vital. Present in all the stories that Marina Spada writes and directs, she is both a silent witness and a splendidly measured protagonist.
The two photographers are Gabriele Basilico and Toni Thorimbert, diverse by experience and passion. Basilico loves cities and architecture, the contemplation and slow visions of deep silence. Thorimbert loves people, the countryside, motorcycles, the visions created in relation with others. They’ve known each other since practically forever. Both love photography, the films of Marina Spada, and challenges. So working together on constructing the images for this book, for Marina’s latest film, was decidedly a challenge that couldn’t go unaccepted. The very concept of the book was a gamble: setting an experience of pure “static” vision, a silent reappraisal, next to a work which instead lived on images in movement and sounds. For all intents it is an experiment of photography on cinema, spawned by the film but with an ambition to grow until becoming authoritative and self-sustaining.
Basilico figured on revisiting the places where the story took place, and confronting his work with the frames of the film; Thorimbert chose to be witness to several moments during the shooting, on set, but above all wished to portray – isolating them from the context – all the protagonists that allowed the complex mechanism of cinema to work. The two photographers remained faithful to their professional proclivities, faithful to the use of their well-practiced narrative arrangements. They have traveled down parallel roads, in distant complicity, aware of working on different themes which however, in the end, must ineluctably converge. Gabriele Basilico explored the streets of Milan in search not so much of the places where the film was shot, but of the photographic valence of those places, that valence which Marina was already aware of before choosing a spot to place her camera. He had already shared the experience of a previous film with Marina. Close as a shadow: for several moments of which he had also occupied himself with the direction of photography. For her he played and replayed “Story of a Love Affair,””The Place,” “The Night,” several films by Godard and Kim Ki-duk, following a movie buff’s itinerary suggested by the director. But above all, he had walked with her through the Milanese outskirts in search of places that both already had in their heart and head. For Toni Thorimbert instead, it was a matter of being present on set, and studying the diverse protagonists: the actors, of course, but also all those who allow a written plot to become a film. Being present, studying the physiognomies, passing from a photo-journalistic mindset – which documents situations and persons – to that of a portrait artist, which is closer and dearer to his heart. And ultimately creating a “democratic” gallery of faces which, thanks to an empathetic gaze, nullifies notoriety and importance of role, thereby rendering everyone unspeakably “true.”
Marina Spada knows “with certainty that more than objects and persons, cinema represents sentiments.” This book is a confirmation of that. Because above all, this book tells a simple story of friendships and affections. A choral effort, therefore, born around Marina’s project, and which, at work’s end, she examined, photo by photo, discussing their sequence, and after grumbling through the texts, granting her final approval.