Davide Greco

Location: Turin, Italy
Nationality: Italian
Biography: Born in 1982, I’m an Italian freelance documentary and corporate photographer. I’m currently based in Turin, where I work on documentary projects, editorial assignments and portraiture. My personal works often explore identity... MORE
Public Story
Copyright Davide Greco 2023
Date of Work Oct 2022 - Oct 2022
Updated Nov 2023
Location Sirmione
Topics Agenzia magnum, Artist-in-residence, Beauty, Catullo, Catullus, Community, Culture, Custodi, Documentary, Garda, Garda lake, Grotte di catullo, Grottoes, Grottoes of catullus, Guardians, Heritage, Iconic places, Identity, Keepers, Lago di garda, Lake garda, Landscape, Magnum, Magnum agency, Magnum photo agency, Magnum photos, Magnumphotos, Photography, Photojournalism, Portrait, Portraiture, Residency, Residenza, Residenza artistica, Residenza d'artista, Roman, Roman villa, Sirmione, Villa romana
Custodi (keepers) condenses the stories of 16 people who represent or protect the historical, cultural, natural or spiritual heritage of Sirmione. People acting behind the scenes, taking care of its beauty, handing down its stories and traditions, protecting its fragilities. My visual synthesis aims to give Sirmione a new identity by avoiding, as much as possible, reproducing a faded reflection of the original.
Custodi (Keepers) is a photographic project developed in the frame of the Sirmione Photo Residency award in partnership with Magnum Photos.

At first glance, Sirmione is a slender strip of land stretching for about 4 km into the waters of the southern Lake Garda. It's a small world born from the thaw of a glacier, standing firm against the erosive forces of nature. Described as the "pearl of Lake Garda" by the poet Gaio Valerio Catullo, it welcomes over a million visitors each year, drawn by the enchanting colors and magical atmospheres that have inspired poets throughout history. A visual imprint so profound that it has endured over the years, transforming a small fishing village into one of the most sought-after and photographed tourist destinations in just a few decades. This substantial volume of images often results from brief visits, spent over a weekend or just a few hours, shared with countless other lives and perspectives. Similar experiences inevitably lead to similar photographs.

Can photography be an effective storytelling tool in a place crowded with images?

I attempted to answer this question by exploring a different Sirmione, one that is more intimate and perhaps closer to the idea of beauty passed down by poets through the centuries. Over the course of two weeks, I collected the stories of its "guardians" of beauty: individuals deeply connected to Sirmione who, by choice or destiny, protect its historical, cultural, natural, or spiritual heritage. I observed them in their daily lives, and from their gazes and narratives, gratitude for a territory that captivates with every sunrise and sunset shines through.

Therefore, my visual synthesis is an attempt to provide a face to Sirmione while avoiding, as much as possible, the creation of a faded reflection of the original. Furthermore, my photographs aim to give credit to those behind the scenes, the caretakers of its beauty, the keepers of its stories and traditions, and the protectors of its vulnerabilities. To those who ensure this wealth can be shared, narrated, and photographed daily.

Custodi is also a book published by Municipality of Sirmione and Magnum Photos.

Also by Davide Greco —


The dawn of the white truffle

Davide Greco / Monchiero

The wounded healer

Davide Greco / Turin

Słubfurt: a double European dream

Davide Greco / Frankfurt (Oder)


Davide Greco

Stories of young enterprises

Davide Greco
Custodi by Davide Greco
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