I lived for a couple of weeks in the Cabanyal  (El Cabañal), a neighbourhood and old fisherman’s village in the city of Valencia. Although the area is an historically protected neighbourhood, the coast is gradually being cemented over to drive a monstrously wide road through the middle of it. 1651 houses would be demolished. Some amazing buildings destroyed in the midst of political rubble.

Rita’s stripes where once there were houses; the plots have been walled up and painted with bands of brown and fawn.Rita.

Estate agents sell 60m2 flats at €25,000-30,000 in the Cabanyal area.

I was overwhelmed by the scenes in which I found myself. It was like a natural movie set. Sometimes I was part of the films talking to strangers in the streets, to the gypsies living in squats often with no running water, to the mother sitting on the side of the street with her child, to the pusher on the other side, to the young Romanians running happily through the streets pulling a bottle of soda around on string.

Gipsies, no posers.man-at-work gipsy-model.jpggipsy-toys

El Cabanyal has always had its problems, from the devastating fires of 1796 and 1875 to the cholera epidemic in the1860’s;  from the Spanish Civil War to the major floods of 1957. I consider the stupidity of destroying the history contained in the neighborhood the worst epidemic that has occurred in the Cabanyal.


/ Mattia Giordano /

 You can find Mattia on Instagram (@mattiagiordano) and Facebook.

(He doesn’t use any other social network. All photos were taken by mobile phone.)

/ www.mattiagiordano.com /

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