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Sardegna, 2021-24

The 'Origini' project was born from the need to research my origins and my past, but also my present, in a country that has been in my blood for generations: Sardinia.

The project aims to communicate art in an unconventional and inclusive way, translating my past into a contemporary language, bringing to life the customs and settings of a lost era through portraiture poses in the people I portray today.


Origins aims to reconstruct a "fake archive" dated between 1900 and 1950 after ethnographic and anthropological research, the artist Melissa Marcello imagines herself as a photographer who travels through time and meets in her daily life the people who live in various countries and sees the differences that characterize and unite each of them.


This fake archive is a contemporary art project and for internal use it is a continuous contradiction. It is not a reportage but it seems so, in fact everything was shot by organizing the individual "scenes" with the care of a film set in stage photography.

We see a time-non-time that tells of a dimension that lives in a limbo between past and present.


This is why I have chosen to tell - through black and white and antiqued images - the most authentic Sardinia, its beating heart: the mountainous Barbagia and the Gens Barbaricina, already known to the ancient Romans. In a vast territory in the interior of the island, which extends around present-day Nuoro and has a population of only 120,000 inhabitants, the inscrutability of these people has been poorly documented and valorised by historians and sociologists. With photography, I aim to trace the boundary from today's inhabitants to their ancient lineage.

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