Janoub
Project info

Janoub
جنوب

This photographic project is called "Janoub", which in Arabic means "south". It tells, in part, about Tunisia, of a “South” that is not only a south to the “western world” but also the south of one country. A country not very big, but very fragmented and where the latitude differences are evident and tangible. The differences between the north and south were further exacerbated after the "jasmine revolution" of 2011, and today - although many of the aspirations which have prompted thousands of people to protest at that time were not realised - the part of Tunisia closer to the Libyan border and crossed by the fascinating desert bordered also with Algeria, seems stuck in something not properly defined. Adding to the existing economic and partly cultural backwardness, the political instability in neighboring Libya significantly influences the entire southern region, which in recent years caused the tourism, the main source of livelihood for the whole area, to collapse. Moreover, the scarcity of jobs pushed many young people to leave their country to seek their fortune in various forms, not only in the north of the country, but also abroad. Despite these problems, the south of Tunisia remains the most genuine and fascinating part of the country, one in which I was lucky enough to spend a period of my life. The expanse of the desert, that takes on different colours depending on the different areas and the seasons, and the immense olive groves that stretch over all types of terrain, even sand, come together to provide an extremely hospitable society, made up of simple people with profound values.
For this project, that in its entirety includes several images dealing with various aspects, but by necessity must be restricted to few photographs, I have chosen to show part of southern Tunisia through a tale of images. It is drawn from everyday life, as if it were a single nonstop trip. Many of the elements that distinguish this "Janoub" are well represented, a fresco of landscapes and activities ranging from fishing, the olive harvest, grazing goats or camels, until a few elements that symbolize in other respects the Tunisian life, as in the case of barrels of petrol illegally imported from Libya or, unfortunately, the widespread pollution of many areas.