Simone Sangalli

Simone Sangalli

In Italy it is estimated that there are about 9 billion square metres of abandoned areas. Most of them are the result of an industrial past that left indelible marks on the country’s urban landscape. This important statistic could, however, also be seen as an enormous opportunity for our urban areas. Turin is one of the cities that saw the greatest levels of industrialisation and this is where Parco Dora (Dora Park) was set up. It has helped transform a rundown peripheral area into an urban lung and meeting place. During the 1990s many of the industries that had changed our cities left them in order to move to other parts of the world. In Turin the Spina 3 area was neglected for many years, but then the municipality understood the need to redevelop it. And so began a gentrification project that integrated natural environments with elements of the industrial past. And it is the members of the younger generation that have played the biggest part in reinterpreting this area, transforming it into a perfect place for street art, socialising and sporting activities. The purpose of this environmental and social sustainability project is to build a better society for everyone: by creating new common spaces, renovating the outskirts and enhancing social cohesion. In this photo we see the former Michelin cooling tower in the green of Parco Dora.


Simone Sangalli (who was born in 1992) is a photographer who lives in Cernusco sul Naviglio (near Milan). His gradual progression towards becoming a photo reporter began when he lived in London where he used photography as a means of keeping a personal diary. On his return to Italy, he held his first exhibition (“Osservare”), which offered an intimate and melancholic portrait of London. After this experience he travelled around Italy under the conceptual guidance of Italo Calvino’s book "Le città Invisibili" (Invisible Cities). This provided the basis for an exhibition, "Introspezione" (Introspection) at the LatoB cultural centre in Milan which combined his photos with excerpts from the book. His yearning for discovery and his fascination with social issues led him to visit Manila, the capital of the Philippines, a place that shows the more controversial aspects of today’s megacities. The photos he took there appeared in the "Contrasti, luci ed ombre del XXI secolo" (Contrasts, lights and shadows of the 21st century) project which was exhibited at the ArtePassante Gallery as part of the 2019 Milano Photo Festival. Since then, he has increasingly concentrated on social and environmental issues, writing articles and chronicling the redevelopment of Rome’s Tor Marancia district. His forthcoming projects focus on urban redevelopment and sustainability, while leaving room for the production of more intimate and personal features.

Simone Sangalli