Stromboli, Aeolian Islands, Sicily

Primordial and solitary, lost way out in the Tyrrhenian Sea, Stromboli is the most northerly island of the Aeolian archipelago in Sicily. Shrouded in a mist of legends, she has inspired the writings of Homer, Nietzsche, Dumas and Verne, enthralled by the unpredictable and mysterious force of her volcano and fathomless sea, captured for eternity in the images of film director Rossellini. On Stromboli’s dark and barren land, originally amorphous and incandescent lava, bright stains of colour explode: flowering caper bushes, orange and lemon blossoms, plants of thriving artemisia, agave and cactus. On this island swept by sea winds, any trace of human beings – mute in the reverence they nurture toward their volcano - is unobtrusive and respectful. Of a blinding and absolute whiteness, the houses are little cubic temples illuminating a landscape made of exuberant and irregular black stony heaps. Inside, they preserve the history of the island, together with that of its inhabitants and their objects. Tiny caskets that shun any form of ostentation but welcome the marvels of colour and natural matter. A secluded island that does not preclude those who land there from the enchantment of adventure and the joy of discovery. Here, where man and nature live in an austere and timeless harmony, fabric rediscovers its most archaic origins. Be it sail, shelter, awning, seat cover or blanket, it reveals all the uses with which it has accompanied the history of mankind. Signs in the form of woven details, yarns and colour, or its absence, recount the ancient dialogue between the textile art and the human presence, moving with lightness over dark beaches, in crystal clear waters and inside candid white dwellings. | Photo credit: Andrea Ferrari