Secular or religious, Catholic or Orthodox, followers of singular syncretism of Eastern religions and apocryphal Christian revelation or even shaman healers: these are the contemporary hermits. Hermits, far from disappearing, are a growing and fascinating phenomenon observed since the late eighties and has seen a steady increase in number in recent years. There are not many of them but their presence and their witness have a powerful and fascinating effect, even if
their existence seems paradoxical in our society. They live sometimes isolated in small apartments
in the heart of our cities, but most often by the side of woods and villages, building their own retreat,
or in put-away old rectory and chapels that have previously fallen to pieces. The hermit does not withdraw because he failed to achieve a position in the world or for personal ambitions and we cannot speak of misanthropy. They are educated, almost all graduates, many are monks, priests or missionaries.
Also, many are lay-people: architects, doctors, directors, writers and teachers. There are those who allow themselves to be photographed and those who do not grant an interview. Regardless, they all hold extraordinary stories and portraits of humanity from which the beauty of life flows.
About the Artist
Carlo Bevilacqua (Italy, b.1961) is a photographer and filmmaker based in Milan, Italy, whose career has spanned more than twenty years, alternating photography and direction of documentaries and video clips including Little Red Robin Hood, a biographic documentary about Robert Wyatt, Soft Machine’s singer and drummer, with Elvis Costello, Brian Eno, Paul Weller and Nick Mason (Pink Floyd drummer). His awards include Mention of Honor in the International Photographic Awards 2008, 2009 and 2011, in America Photo 2008, in Tau Visual Professional Prize for Creativity 2008, and winner of the HF Prize in SI Fest Savignano Immagini 2008. His works have been exhibited or screened in various films and photo festival including Boutographies in Montpellier, France, Cortona On The Move, Italy, Biennal of Photography Brescia Italy, PhotoBiennale in Thessaloniki Greece, International Fotografia Festival Rome, Indian Vision London, Fotografia Europea Reggio Emilia Italy, Encontros da Imagem Braga — Portugal, Center for Fine Art Photography Colorado USA and National Portrait Gallery London (UK) for the Taylor Wessing Prize 2011.