Marco showed me the pictures he took in jail. I know at least half of the inmates: in M’s photos they look older then they do in the flesh as I see them from day to day. And yet perhaps the camera has captured something truly reflecting the significance of their existence, in a way that is detached, neutral and silvery, and which somehow represents them better than my daily contact with them can ever do. Warmth, movement and immediate vitality can trick us – produce an illusory distorsion similar to the one that has us believe that the jail is a place of strong sentiments, healthy and true (and nothing is further from the truth). In the end who are these individuals with grey hair shaved to within two millimetres from the skull? With their hard ravaged features, scored black by the bags under their eyes?
These are spirits rather than men, middle-aged ghosts, half-men, or spectes that are too human, wearing jogging suits, fit for nothing, buried prematurely, old without the decorum of old age. No doubt they will end up looking as they do in the photos. So it is right that they should already be represented in this way. This is why these photos seem distant from the original subjects and yet their strange resemblance disturbs me so much: they are premonitions, prophecies.