The inhabitants of the earth
The Inhabitants of the Earth is the story of two Roma families stationed for years in a camp near Naples, where, through creativity and hard work, old bomb shelters have been converted into homes. These people, originally from Romania, live in boisterous monotony, among hardship, delirious fun and constant relocation. In this microcosm disconnected from the rest of the city, everything seems immobile, but actually everything changes: some are born, some leave, some come back.
Currently their wanderings are not the product of nomadism which has been the main trait of the Roma culture for centuries, but is born out of the need to put aside enough money to build decent houses in their villages, houses which will be passed on to their children. The families from the camp come from Voitinel and Gura Humorului.
Voitinel is a small rural village in Bukovina, where the air is so pure it makes your nostrils itch and the most common means of transport is the horse.
Gura Humorului is a little city which lies on the banks of the Moldova river, characterised by a tourist park. Gypsy neighbourhoods are expanding around the centre of town. The unspoilt natural landscape clashes jarringly with the run-down environment of the camp.
The two bloodlines differ greatly not only somatically but also in temperament.
The families from Gura Humorului speak the Gypsy language and through it they safeguard their secrets and strengthen their union. The families from Vitinel, instead, define themselves as Romanian gypsies. If there is one thing that makes them similar wherever they may be, it’s their capacity to live in the present moment, where despairing for the future or crying over old tragedies, be they personal or historical, has no meaning. Memories and dreams make space for the experience of instant, in all its intensity.