Who we are & why we are

Welcome to the gallery site of Broken Light Collective. We are artists of all levels and abilities who are affected by mental illness. We create and we share our work for the therapeutic benefits to us, as well as others who may be struggling and feeling scared and alone. Together we can move from disconnected to collective.

Giovanni Savino is a photographer and a filmmaker. Having been in the care of therapists since childhood, both in the U.S.A. and in Europe, dealing with trauma, anxiety and chronic depression, his non-commercial work often explores issues of mental health and the healing process that can be offered by creative artistic practices.

From the artist:

“My decision to embark on this body of work was elicited by three reasons:

1) Having had a tumor removed from my shoulder bone with a subsequent collapsing of one of my lungs and a post-op pneumonia in November 2019, I was at high risk to have serious consequences should I contract COVID-19, hence I entered a strict and prolonged isolation that continues to this day.

2) My portraiture business since the beginning of the pandemic became an oxymoron. I felt the need to continue my photography practice and self-expression, even just to retain a bit of mental sanity during an extended period of psychological and economic hardship.

3) I desired to explore a new visual element the pandemic had rapidly imposed onto our everyday image: the mask. Never before have I delved into the concept of masked portraiture but I have always been intrigued and deeply touched by the work of a photographer I had the privilege to meet here in New York, Phyllis Galembo, whose vast and powerful body of work I find enormously inspiring. Her work focuses on masks and masked humans around the world.

Obviously I had only one subject at hand: myself.

The days go by, slowly and yet, frightfully fast. 

My only temporal reminder is the clapping and cheering for Health Workers sprouting from the nearby buildings everyday at 7PM.

Some of the selected images from this work, so far, are decidedly dark, others are quite self-deprecating and others are perhaps replete of dark humor and a desire to laugh, rather than cry.

They all mainly document my sheer existence, a necessary reminder for me, as never before in my life I have been this long and deep removed from all social interactions, work engagements, the city, the sky, the wind, the sun on my face.

When shall this body of work end? My guess is as good as yours.

I simply don’t know, and as the days go by, I feel I know, understand and can predict less and less, not only about the pandemic, but also about the increasing turmoil affecting most things: from our health to politics, race relations, the economy, constitutional freedoms, the survival of the planet, my photography business. Everything.

For the first time in history we are all institutionally masked: we need this uncomfortable “wall”, built right on our faces, to protect us from others and vice-versa. The mask removes our facial expressivity, it impedes breathing, eating, speaking and kissing, it isolates us all, more than ever before, paradoxically, in order to stay alive.”

Giovanni Savino NYC June 15 2020 

Website: http://www.giovannisavinophotography.com/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/giovannisavinophotography/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ultimo.fotografo/

Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/magneticart/

FB: https://www.facebook.com/magneticart

Twitter: https://twitter.com/ultimofotografo

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