I N S I D E O S T U N I
Our constant research of cities, characterized by a predominant color, leads us to discover incredible realities where history and culture leave indelible marks across time. After Chefchaouen's journey, we have had the opportunity to visit a city with similar features.
Ostuni is a village located in Puglia, a region in the south of Italy. Commonly nicknamed by the locals The White Pearl, this town presents itself with narrow alleys, arches, and a predominant white. These elements have evoked in us the incredible experience lived in the Moroccan Blue Pearl.
T H E O R I G I N S
Ostuni is known to be a village entirely white painted. Raised in the Istra's valley, on three hills, has seen a myriad pass of folks and cultures since the 1.000 B.C. The first registered occupation, according to historical sources, was from the Japigi and Messapi populations.
The oldest part of the village, called by the locals La Terra, was raised on the highest hill and was entirely covered with white lime. Its structure remembers a maze, similar to an Arab casbah. From the highest point unfolds a multiplication of floors, alleys, stairways, tangled streets that cross arches and small squares, characterized by lively craft shops and typical restaurants, gathered in a snail-shaped architecture.
The white lime of this locality has distant roots. The city of Ostuni was repeatedly hit by the plague, especially in 1656. By covering the houses' walls with lime, they sanitize all the area and make it aseptic. A survival choice that today turns the village in one of the most famous Salento's cities.
A B O U T T H E V I L L A G E
The village nowadays is lived by a small group of residents. Most of the population has moved to more profitable areas, modern and comfortable districts, and nearby metropolis. Others traveled to the northern regions of Italy or abroad. To represent the population in their daily life was not easy to do, because of the considerable tourists' influx.
The White Pearl's survival is guaranteed above all by the seasonal tourism and activities that are organized by the remaining inhabitants. This charming town, with a warm and welcome heart, tells its peculiar culture with the typical Italian elegance.
T H E P R O J E C T
Ostuni is a town characterized by a total white that reveals different tones depending on the reflected light.
Our intent, as for The Blue Pearl project, was to show the village immersed in its enveloping color, focusing on the emphasis on white, making it as intense as possible.
To achieve that goal, we deeply explored the city for three days, analyzing and selecting interesting spots, photographing them several times across the 24 hours. Through this method, we were able to select just the photographs which had the most suitable exposure, raising the white shades' managing options in post-production.
The post-production of white tones was a hard challenge to face. To convey the same feelings that the Ostuni's white lime transmitted to us, we had to work several times on the style of the photographs.
In this phase, we have adopted the artistic choice to drastically reduce the contrast between lights and shadows, bringing some white tones to the limit of over-exposure.
C U R I O S I T I E S A N D C O M P A R I S O N S
Ostuni evoked in our memory the experience lived in Chefchaouen. We captured moments that show how similar are both villages. Below, some examples which compare those moments photographed 2.500Km apart.
C O M P O S I T I O N A L K E Y
A lot of people ask us about our photos. How we create them, how we develop a composition. To answer all these answers, we decided to create some GIFs which explain our composition process. Have fun watching them.
D I A G O N A L S
S Y M M E T R Y
N A T U R A L F R A M E S
L I N E S O N T H I R D S
C E N T E R E D
T R I P T I P S
We experienced Ostuni's for three days, meeting friendly and hospitable people who helped us making our journey memorable. Below you can find the links of places which gifted us extraordinary experiences:
Bar: Lucky Day D'amico | Map