Tribute to the Sea, a moment with Franco (said Diogenes)

« Lo iodo per combattere l’odio », traduced « The iodine to fight against the hate », beautiful anagram found by Franco, artist and philosopher in love with the Sea. Franco was born and has grown up in Nerano, and since he was a child, he always loved, as many of us, swiming and beeing close to the « big blue ». After studying art (and life) in London, he finally went back to his village, to his roots, and opened a bar in the little square that didn’t scarcely change from his childhood. Then, he transformed his bar in a real exhibition devoted to the sea and you can have, there, a coffe in the middle of philosophical thoughts, paintings and sculptures made of diverse objects found in the water. The Sea is his muse, and his favourite moment to write is the winter. When there is nobody, and that he can quietly listen to it and observe its many touches of colour, he submerge himself in a whole harmony with the Nature. Enjoying a limon slush while listening nice napoletan music, he precised us the sens of his work.

A main element leads his story: the Sea. The Sea as start and ending of everything. This is also the first idea in his work. Remembering the natural cycles of many species that always return at the place they where born, he explains us that all of us, in a certain way, feel attracted to the Sea because, as he says, « almost 72% of our body is made of liquids (just like The Earth) so it feels nostalgy of its origin. This is the reason why it is important to be always in contact with the Sea, and not only when the weather is good ». Moreover, Franco, throughout his exhibition, pays tribute to the Sea that cures as well bodies than brains, and that makes us feel that good, free, lighter… « La salute nostra dipende del « dottor mare » … Il nuoto riempie il vuoto ». (« Our health depends of the « doctor Sea » … because « Swimming fills in the emptyness »). From a certain point of view, Franco, collecting this way objects to give them a new life, so removing them from the water, cures the Sea as the Sea does cure him … a certain symbiosis between them, somehow.

Strange light above Ieranto Bay catched by Franco

At this point, Franco mentions a bit sadly a kind of melancholy of the passed time. Nowadays people forgot its aquatic origin, and we can observe a lack of respect towards the Sea and the environment generally speaking. As proof the increible quantity of rubbish we can see floating so often (« in the Pacific Ocean, a so said « 6th plastic continent » doesn’t stop increasing ») or washing ashore every day … Franco’s work not only consists in the description of his love for that Sea who saw him growing up, but also in the denunciation of its actual situation. He tells us how he saw it deteriorating year after year: « Before, in the area, there where the monk Seal. Fishermen say that they where coming to the coast and eating grapes before going back to the Sea ». He also evoques the shell « orecchio di Dioniso » and the seahorse that he used to see, and that we can’t find anymore. The action of the human being made of the sea he used to know another Sea: « Now, with the fertilisers that go to the Sea, it’s not the same anymore, after the bath, I need a shower. »

From his message we’ll keep this: Let’s return to our previous values, our future depends on it. « The Earth doesn’t need us, but, on the contrary, we do. We arrived to the point in which not dirtying is not enough, but in which we need to cure it ».


« Senza la guerra
Paradiso è la Terra
Del Mare lo iodio
Per sconfigere l’odio.
Il nuoto riempie il vuoto.
Nuotare come volare
Ma il naufragar
Non m’ è dolce
In questo mar…
Di naufraghi extra comunitari »