Collin Watt climbs a rope in his backyard. He is karate teacher for the visually impaired and waiter at the restaurant Dans le Noir, in midtown Manhattan. Queens, New York, July 10, 2012


Gaia Squarci

Broken Screen

When you’re losing sight, the world starts to appear fragmented, like through a broken screen. Then you stop understanding where light comes from.” Dale Layne

The blind live in a sighted world. They function in a system constructed on the rules of seeing. Many of them could once see, but after going blind they were forced to reinvent themselves, and their quality of life became deeply affected by disability law, support in the private sphere, and the level of awareness in the society around them. I asked them to guide me into their lives. I’m interested in the disconnect between the concept of blindness as a metaphor and its reality. Stripped of its mysterious aura, the blindness of daily life, the one that’s not heard of in the words of a song, often turns out to be disquieting, and kept at a distance.This project has become a way for me to explore our universal needs. I imagine myself in the position of someone who turned blind, forced to reinvent my relationship to the world after years of a sighted life. When filtered through blindness, the core questions of identity, love and independence feel to me even more resonant.

“Broken Screen” is currently displayed at STILL gallery in Milan, Italy, till January 28, 2016.




Raised in Milan, Italy, she studied Art History at University of Bologna and photojournalism at International Center of Photography (ICP). In 2014 she attended the Eddie Adams Workshop and was nominated for the Joop Swart masterclass in the same year. In 2015 her work has been selected for the exhibition reGeneration3 about new approaches to photography at Musée de l’Elysée in Lausanne.

Her clients include the New York Times, the New Yorker, Time Magazine, Vogue, the Wall Street Journal, MSNBC, VICE, The Guardian, Newsweek and L’Oeil de le Photographie. Her work has been exhibited in the United States, Italy, France, Switzerland, Mexico, Ireland and China. 

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Gaia Squarci

2 thoughts on “Gaia Squarci – Broken Screen”

  1. A photographer’s greatest nightmare, placed before photographers in dramatic black and white through a brilliant essay her willing, collaborative, subjects will never see. Much to ponder here.

  2. I’ve been thinking about this subject for a while now; my mother has gone through various stages of blindness. As Frostfrog notes, Ms. Squarci’s project exposes fears of losing vision; some of the photos highlight the isolation that I imagine and that my mom expresses.

    I always viewed the changes as adaptation, but the thread of reinvention in the photos better suits an attitude of positive change.

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