The Shape of Water Vanishes in Water

Marina Caneve

In the 5th chapter of The Shape of Water Vanishes in Water the writer Taco Hidde Bakker writes “Our future looks bleak and, as always, trust and hope is placed in the youngest generation. They will become so smart as to fix our problems. Techno-optimism. But this time, perhaps, there’s nothing to be fixed. Must we, rather, change our habits, tell different stories about the force of nature, our ambiguous relationship to and our image of our (so far) only Earth?”

Especially in recent years we have seen a generation of young women and men reflect with particular emphasis on the ecological impact of their actions. 
The current health crisis, the pandemic, has made it clear that destroying ecosystems is equivalent to breaking a Pandora’s box whose contains creatures in which are lurking viruses and bacteria that are lethal to humans.

My reflection on this historical moment comes as a clear reference to adolescence not intended much as a phase of life characterized by physical fragility, but rather by an emotional search for a balance in personal relationships and in relationships with the outside world; the outside world where nature and culture intertwines and where events such as the current one arise and expand.

“How to face Gaia from now on – that’s the question. ”

The Shape of Water Vanishes in Water is a project realized for the 9th edition of Cavallino Treporti Fotografia. Cavallino Treporti is a small city near by Venice, facing on one side to the Adriatic sea and on the other to the Venice Lagoon. It’s territory, economy and society are very much influenced by this double presence of the sea and the lagoon. The 13.000 resident inhabitants have to confront with a daily attendance that hits 80.000 in summer. For almost a decade every year a photographer was invited to make a project investigating the identity of the area.

My work, focusing on teenagers and the greenest part of the landscape, dialogues with an essay of six short texts by Taco Hidde Bakker.

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