Giovanni Lo Curto Photographer

Shoes

Syria 2009.

Planned temporary installation in Damascus Jewish neighborhood.

I want to recreate everyday life scenes using wooden feet, used to make shoes, as footprint of the inhabitants that trough history lived in the Jewish quarter. The neighborhood is almost abandoned and empty, in a poor state of maintenance and half deserted after the inhabitants left willingly or forced by the Syrian government to Israel in the 50's.

In 1994 the Government started do revitalize the quarter with boutiques hotels and Ateliers, it will be the new artist quarter of the old city. In many houses still living the same Palestinians refugee families that were relocated back then in a sort of citizens swap with Israel, others are still held back by the government waiting for the return of the legitimate owners.

Any legal clear status about ownership and future of this neighborhood is linked to the huge amount of economical and political interests.

With this project I want to reflect about memories and uses of places, on loss of identity and multiculturalism of one of the most Cosmopolitan city of the past where every citizen was a citizen of Damascus with is role, culture and established community.

This project is incomplete.

The photos are the only part of the films I was able to save and comprehend an early study of the project next to my home in old Damascus and the begins of the project in the Jewish neighborhood.