The Officine Meccaniche Reggiane, also known as “Le Reggiane”, located in Reggio Emilia, was one of the most important company in Italy from its opening on 1901 until the end of WWII.
In these huge buildings military aircrafts were built, and the industry flourished because of the two world conflicts – orders coming not only from the Italian Army but also from abroad.
During WWII the company premises were bombed and in 1945, when war came to an end, the Officine Reggiane had to cope with destruction and with the harsh production limitations imposed by the allies. The real revival of the company took place with the construction of port cranes and in 2008 the company was acquired by an American multinational and its production site transferred to another location leaving the whole area completely neglected. The site became a refuge for homeless, illegal immigrants and drugs addicted. In 2011 the dilapidated buildings found a new life with the help of the first writers who started leaving their beautiful art everywhere on the Officine Reggiane area, even on the rooftops.
What it might be the biggest street art lab in Europe is going to face destruction. The Municipality of Reggio Emilia has begun a process of recovering the area by acquiring and renovating one of the sheds, now under re-construction, destined for technological innovation. Jam art sessions have taken place in the Officine Reggiane area during the last two years, so that to create public awareness about the beautiful work-of-art hosted among those decaying walls.
Many are the photographers who captured the state-of-the-art of the Officine Reggiane, and this is my contribution, just a little snapshot of the thousands of beautiful stencils, wheatpasting and stenclis art that fill this place with a mystic atmosphere, taken on April 2nd, 2017
Le Officine Meccaniche Reggiane di Reggio Emilia hanno una lunga storia. Ma quello che volevo a tutti i costi raccogliere erano le testimonianze artistiche dei tantissimi street artists che negli anni hanno lasciato il loro meraviglioso segno. Segni che verranno parzialmente cancellati da lavori di “bonifica” della zona industriale, destinata ad ospitare il nuovo polo tecnologico. Queste le immagini più significative da me raccolte nell’Aprile 2017.