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Sicily’s Storytellers

400EUR per person

Documentary Photography | Advanced

Every stone tells a story, and we want to capture it. During this intimate workshop we will discover the cultural traces of Sicilian traditions and art, hidden in the outback of the Sicani Mountains and the Valle del Belice, between Palermo and Agrigento. This four day tour will be dedicated to all those who wish to improve their skills in visual storytelling and landscape photography, experimenting with different settings and topics. In the workshop we will travel back in time and discover the ancient ruins of Segesta before heading to Gibellina and Poggioreale. Here we’ll explore the stony testimonials of the seismic earthquake in 1968. On sculptor Lorenzo Reina’s art farm we visit his exceptional Teatro Andromeda and learn more about permaculture. One of the highlights  is the Easter procession of Prizzi, a little village in the Sicilian promontory where religious traditions meet profanity during the “Dance of the Devils”. Each day you will get a new “mission” and focus on different elements guided by the Sicilian documentary filmmaker and nature photographer Mathia Coco. Your tutor will help you to build a set of images and find editorial solutions during our photo lab in the evening. Here we have the possibility to share our impressions of the journey and talk about the visual language and quality of our shots within the group.

WORKSHOP DATE

The next workshop is provided for the following date. Please check the availability of places within our booking tool. For more information send a message to mail@siciscatta.com

18th – 21st April 2018
Your Coach

Mathia Coco will be your workshop coach. He is an experienced nature photographer and video maker who belongs to the Association: „Fotografi Naturalisti Italiani“. Together with his brother Stefano Coco, he founded the production company RICCIO BLU and released the award-winning documentary „Ustica. Gli anni del diamante“. This film tells the extraordinary story of the little Sicilian island Ustica where baseball became a dream of all generations.

www.mathiacoco.com

Costs

Costs included: The Workshop fee of 400 EUR includes: a personal photography coach, local guide, training materials, welcome & farewell dinner, SiciScatta Kit

Discount: 20 % Off for students of photography, visual arts and film (with a document certifying the current studies) and group booking (min. 4 persons).

Costs on tour: Based on a 3-night-stay and the records of our previous trips the estimated amount of travel costs for this workshop will be around 450 EUR (including accommodation, meals and local transfers). Thanks to our partnerships with trustful local operators we can help you to organize your stay. Please contact us for more information.

Is it for me?

The workshop is recommended for advanced photographers with basic skills who want to improve their personal portfolio with unique street photographs. We expect participants to be familiar with their camera (digital) and lenses and work easily with common post-production tools.

Every block of stone has a statue inside. It is the task of the sculptor to discover it.

Michelangelo

  • Destination
  • Departure Time
    10:00 AM Palermo
  • Return Time
    20:00 PM Palermo
  • Included
    Personal Guide
    Photography Coach
    Sici:scatta Travel Kit
    Training Materials
    Welcome & Farewell Meal
  • Not Included
    Accomodation
    Flight
    Transfers
1
DAY 1: HELLO PALERMO
After your arrival in Palermo we will meet for our first photo walk in the historical city center of Palermo lead by our impulse and creativity in the streets. Within the small alleys of the old town and layers of history, we discover the street market and rural neighborhoods of Palermo. Colors, smells and sounds blend in a unique mix of old traditions and modern life. Here the Sicilian metropolis is still connected to its Arab heritage, and people of all generations and origins meet. Here you get the chance to experiment with different angles and chat with locals. At the end of the day we come together for our first photo lab. All participants will get the chance to introduce themselves with a portfolio of their photographs and captures of the day, so we can begin to understand the different styles and ambitions we have within the group.
2
DAY 2: STONY MEMORIES

The second day starts early in the morning. We will ride in a minivan from Palermo to the ruins of Segesta, capturing the morning light. The columns of the ancient temple and amphitheatre tell us more about the long history of the Mediterranean island. The archeological park of Segesta is part of the former Greek empire and is the perfect scenery for motifs and extraordinary shots. After the first mission we will continue our shooting day in the rural countryside in the valley of Belice. After discovering the beautiful landscape in this area we head to the old town of Poggioreale. Destroyed by an earthquake in 1968 and left in its state of deterioration until today. The spooky atmosphere of this abandoned place gives us plenty of photo spots and historical scenes. After free time to shoot around, we continue our ride to the former territory of Old Gibellina. Embedded in the hills and vineyards of the outback, the "Cretto" of Alberto Burri is one of the biggest landmarks of contemporary art. Here we will walk through the colossal sculpture that is superimposed onto the ruins of Gibellina and experiment with abstract perspectives. The day ends with a photo lab in the evening where we can share our experiences of the first day.

3
DAY 3: FASCINATION ANDROMEDA

Before we check-out and head to the small Sicilian village Santo Stefano di Quisquina, we will come together for a morning photo lab to discuss successes and difficulties of the past days. Our journey leads us through picturesque landscapes to the Monti Sicani. At 1000 meters stands the "Fattoria dell'Arte" (Farm of Art) by shepard and sculptor Lorenzo Reina. After inheriting his father’s Sicilian pastures, Lorenzo embarked on a vast artistic venture: In over 30 years he has created the exceptional Teatro Andromeda, a living art installation that calls upon Sicily's ancient history. Nowadays it hosts musicians, actors and dancers for events. Before the panoramic view of the theatre we will set-up for the magic hour and discover the rest of the farm, seeing how Lorenzo and his family live and work. Lorenzo will give us an introduction to the principles of permaculture and invite us for a lunch made of products from his farm based on typical Sicilian recipes. After a rich day of new experiences we leave for Corleone, the last stop of our tour.

4
DAY 4: DANCE OF THE DEVIL
The last workshop day will be the highlight of our workshop and dedicated completely to the narrative elements of Street and Documentary Photography. We will take part in the traditional Easter procession of Prizzi. This little town celebrates annually, the "Dance of the Devils" during the "Holy Week". The unique and grotesque Easter ceremony represents good and evil forces fighting each other. The figures, dressed as red devils with their heads hidden in masks, dance through the streets and search for souls until  "angels" put an end to their dance. The celebration brings together ancient pagan traditions from the Middle Ages with religious faith. All photographers will be free to build a set of pictures of the event, capturing rare situations and faces from the procession that will be screened by the end of the day during our last photo lab.
Monti Sicani: Located in the central southern part of Sicily between Agrigento and Palermo, the untouched nature and argillaceous hills of this area are mostly used as a pasture land. Here in heights from 900 to 1500 meters two ancient archaeological sites call back to the era of the Sicani, the first indigenous people in Sicily, who lived as nomadic breeders and permanent farmers. Embedded in the heart of the Monti Sicani is the rural village Santo Stefano Quisquina, where the craftsmanship and the pastoral vocation have not lost their roots. Exploring this characteristic area one seems to go back decades. Until today the territory allows several farms and animal husbandries to produce typical products with high quality. Sicilian cheese specialities like Ricotta and Tumazza are at home here. Other towns that belong to the Nature Park a part of Santo Stefano are: Bivona, Burgio, Cammarata, Castronovo of Sicily, Chiusa Sclafani, Contessa Entellina, Giuliana, Palazzo Adriano, Prizzi, San Giovanni Gemini, Sambuca di Sicilia.     Valle del Belice: Along the pliant course of the river Belice, between the areas of Trapani and Agrigento extends one of the most beautiful territories of western Sicily. An area rich in history, traditions, nature and gastronomic excellency. For those who are looking for a unspoiled nature the Nature Reserve of the Belice River and it's surroundings is certainly the best spot to discover the magical inland of Sicily. Especially the fauna and flora of the dual formations close to the municipalities of Castelvetrano and Menfi offers a special atmosphere which with all it's colors calls to mind the African continent. Historically the area retraces a period of interest of over 2500 years. But also the recent history left traces here. During the disastrous earthquake on January 14th and 15th 1968 up to 400 people died and 100,000 people were left homeless. The centre of the earthquake sequence was measured between the towns Gibellina, Salaparuta and Poggioreale which were completely destroyed. Because Sicily lies on a complex convergent plate boundary between the African Plate and the Eurasian Plate, the history of island self is marked by huge destructive nature phenomenons like earthquakes, tsunamis and volcanic eruptions.  

Facts:

  • Workshop type: Documentary & Street Photography
  • Skill level: Advanced
  • Class: 4-8 participants

SiciScatta Tour Kit:

  • Personalized map of Sicily
  • Digital Guide on Google Maps
  • Lecture about cultural side looks, local project and history
  • SD Memory Card for your camera
  • Entrance to archeological sites

What you need to bring?

  • Digital photo camera, with everything that comes around (cables, charger, card reader) Consider an external hard disk to make a back up of your daily shooting.
  • Minimum of lenses (we recommend a 24-50mm prime lense + zoom lense and/or tele lense)
  • Laptop with charger
  • Other photo equipment (tripod, filter and what ever you desire)
  • Comfortable footwear

Find here all detailed information about our terms & conditions.