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Absurd little messages

Ever since human beings learnt to write, they have not only composed poems, novels, ponderous essays on philosophy or abstruse treatises on theology, they have also filled walls, streets, roads or any other possible surface with invectives, proclamations, declarations of love, mockery, warnings or small utilitarian messages.

These messages are displayed by an infinite variety of means: tickets, warnings, road signs, writings or graffiti, even ancient ones, such as ‘Alexamenos sebete Theos’ with a crucifix with a donkey’s head, or the election messages in Pompeii.
Often they are texts of no interest, which we pay no attention to or at most annoy us when they unnecessarily deface the city.

In some cases, however, they are messages or drawings that, whether intentionally or not, border on the absurd or veer into the surreal: sometimes because of the content, sometimes because of a discrepancy between message and context, or because of the presence of some random object that reinforces or contradicts the meaning, in short, because of some form of irony that is often sought after but not always.

They seem to me to be documents of the vein of everyday absurdity that runs through the city like an underground trickle.
You only have to look around a bit to find some, you don’t even have to go far, most of the photos in this series were taken within a few hundred metres of my house.

Super Mario is gone. Rome, Borgo Pio, August 5th 2022.
Discounts on faith. Rome, Via del Mascherino, November 17th 2022.
The Cartesian System. Rome, Via di Tor di Nona, February 27th 2023.
Directions for absent-minded postmen. Rome, Borgo Pio, February 28th 2023.
“Natura morta”. Rome, Via Fabio Massimo, March 7th 2023.
In case you didn’t understand. Rome, Viale Giulio Cesare, March 7th 2023.
Political invective and panettone. Rome, Via Alcide De Gasperi, March 13th 2023.
Parking ban for reptilian alien spaceships. Milano, Via Santa Margherita, April 4th 2023.
Don’t touch Mother Teresa. Rome, Borgo Pio, April 19th 2023.
To whom else? Rome, Piazza di S. Egidio, January 7th 2023.
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Pietro Coppa

Nato e vissuto a Roma, fotografo per antica passione.

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