Simona Pamp: Two people called my brother
My brother Lorenzo waiting for me at the entrance. © Simona Pampallona
He lives alone with his three cats © Simona Pampallona
Me and Lorenzo when we were kids © Simona Pampallona
Lorenzo in the kitchen © Simona Pampallona
Lorenzo joking at the entrance © Simona Pampallona
"Lorenzo with his friend Raffaele eating together. Raffaele is a "special" friend. They knew since ten years when they started to attend the Mental Health Center. They shared the same psychiatrist." © Simona Pampallona
Lorenzo's way to remember things. He doesn't have a good memory because of the psychotropic drugs and also because he doesn't have a ordinary life. He doesn't work and he is not able to distinguish working days from weekends. © Simona Pampallona
Lorenzo joking. © Simona Pampallona
Birthday cake © Simona Pampallona
Indian tattoo. Lorenzo at the beginning of the sickness believed he was a sciaman. He heard voices and saw imaginary things. © Simona Pampallona
Lorenzo smokes a lot © Simona Pampallona
He is used to punch everything, especially wardrobes, doors and walls. He does it during the night cause he can't sleep. © Simona Pampallona
Raffaele doing a massage to Lorenzo © Simona Pampallona
Lorenzo's house is usually a big mess. © Simona Pampallona
Lorenzo and Raffaele © Simona Pampallona
Raffaele dancing black music. He likes to dance but he is ashamed of his body. © Simona Pampallona
A anti-anxiolitic medicinal on the floor. Lorenzo takes several medicinals and he has no control over times and quantities. © Simona Pampallona
Lorenzo cut his wrists . He does it because he feels pain. He also has cigarette burns on his arms. © Simona Pampallona
"Lorenzo's walk" © Simona Pampallona
The hospital. Three years ago he was crossing the street on the white stripes and a motorbike didn't see him. When he went to the emergency they discover he had benign tumor in the right leg. © Simona Pampallona
Lorenzo smoking outside of the emergency room. He can't stay without smoking. At the emergency room they thought he was a junkie. Actually a lot of people has the same impression. © Simona Pampallona
Our mother and Lorenzo in the hospital © Simona Pampallona
Priscilla, Queen of the desert" on the tv screen of the hospital. © Simona Pampallona
© Simona Pampallona
In the swimming pool, doing rehabilitation. © Simona Pampallona
Waiting to go out. Even if there's nothing to do. © Simona Pampallona
Raffaele visits to Lorenzo in the hospital. They like to talk about the meaning of life, family problems and lack of love. © Simona Pampallona
Me driving and taking pictures of my brother. © Simona Pampallona
Sometimes I feel like this. I don't understand. © Simona Pampallona
"The art of dreaming". A cat and a mountain of sigarettes. © Simona Pampallona
His lover and friend Vanessa. She's a small drug dealer of the neighourhood. © Simona Pampallona
Bath of Lorenzo'house © Simona Pampallona
in the hallway © Simona Pampallona
Lorenzo is thinking. He thinks a lot. © Simona Pampallona
© Simona Pampallona
Even when stories have yet to be told, they already exist. But to be brought out, into the light, they require something, an event, an action. In the case of this story, what happened was I came home to find my brother Lorenzo waiting for me: “God is looking for you” is what he said to me.
The next to speak, immediately after, were the psychiatrists of the Center for Mental Health: “Schizophrenia” was their sentence, and “Psychotropic drugs” their only offered solution.
There is a before and after in the life of every story. The boundaries, however, are uncertain. Before hearing voices, Lorenzo loved love, friendship, cats and gazing at the stars.
And he still loves these things. They continue to be part of his life as he faces the doctor's whitecoats, the acid green of operating rooms, the unending waiting as if something strange was happening in his head, making him a different person and there wasn't enough-invasive surgery, making it necessary to remove a tumor from his thigh-bone: "It is only psychosomatic pain" a psychiatrist had said, thinking he could thus cut short his lament.
Lorenzo's days are filled with letters, cigarettes, a thousand more or less imaginary passions and the company of Raffaele, a true friend. Raffaele also hears voices, And, like Lorenzo, he is a schizophrenic if the psychiatrists verdict is all your looking for.
Photographing Lorenzo was the most natural way I found I could be by his side. So that the psychiatrists don’t have the last word. And to a attempt to embrace, along with the before and after of Lorenzo's story, both people called "my brother".
Simona Pampallona, known as “Pamp”, was born in 1980 in Rome where she lives and since she was 15 years old she took her first pictures in this city. She started out with an old Reflex camera of her father, the same that she used professionally when she started collaborating with agencies and press at the end of 90’s.
She studied Languages and Foreign Literatures and at the same time, she moved on to a brand new modern camera and she did a stage at the Associated press and published the book La memoria e l'oblio (The memory and the oblivion), winning a contest announced by Roma 3° University.
Thanks to various scholarships she had the possibility to travel to Spain, Portugal, Great Britain and Latin America and she took back many pictures and fascinations, with the aim of devoting herself to photojournalism especially personal long term projects.
Her works are on permanent exposition at the Mondo Bizzarro Gallery and the pictures of Corpo Celeste represented by the sole agent Benedetta Cestelli Guidi.