On Friday the 10th of November we opened an incredible exhibition by local photographer and darkroom member Mariano Doronzo called "Through the Looking Glass".
We spoke to Mariano about the work, and here is what he told us;
When I arrived to Nottingham in 2014, I did not know anyone here or anything about this place.
Being alone, I was trying to find a connection with people and the environments I found myself in. Observing from the distance, mostly through windows and mirrors, sometimes feeling jealous of the moments and lives of these strangers, I would steal instants through my film camera to compensate for my sense of loneliness.
Day by day, I tried to get closer with my camera. Listening to their personal stories, breaking down all the invisible walls between our different cultures and discovering the many ways we all have and choose to live our lives. Many of these strangers and I became friends.
Every person you meet can be an open door to a new world - I was introduced to more and more people and taken to different places I would not have had a chance to find or discover being on my own.
But of course, when you live in one place for a while, it is easy to lock yourself inside your own comfort zone with only your friends and your daily routine present, loosing interest and curiosity in the world around you.
One day I realized that I had been walking around the same corners and past the same places for years and never actually really spent the time getting to know my environments. With this in mind I started re-discovering Sneinton – the area where I was living as well as barbershops, tearooms, bakeries, squares, the Cattle Market and people who I passed by every day in suburban or city streets.
Through The Looking Glass is a body of work spanning across three years 2014-2017 (and still ongoing) documenting street life in Nottingham as well as my own journey and discoveries within this city. All the prints are handmade, printed by myself in the Photo Parlour darkroom on Silver Gelatin Paper.
This exhibition has been possible thanks to a crowdfunding campaign supported by so many friends. I will be forever grateful.
About Mariano Doronzo
Mariano Doronzo (b. 1986) is an Italian engineer, photographer and poet based in Nottingham. He moved to England in 2013 and started working with black and white street-photography using an old Praktica film camera.
Currently living in Nottingham, he still works only with analog equipment whilst also expanding his skills in the darkroom from processing film to handmade printing.
Also a keen writer, Mariano was published in Italy in 2016 where his poetry book “Echi del mio tempo” (Echoes of my time) won the Premio Polverini national award for poetry.
Most days you can find Mariano serving the finest pints at The Dragon Pub in Nottingham.