Ottavia Fabbri

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Location: Cali, Colombia
Nationality: Italian
Biography: Ottavia (b.1992) is an Italian documentary photographer focused on Human Rights, Environment and Public Health related issues. Born and raised in the Principality of Monaco, a 2km square sovereign-state also known as the second smallest country in... MORE
Public Story
Copyright Ottavia Fabbri 2022
Date of Work Oct 2018 - Feb 2019
Updated Jun 2019
Location Monaco 98000
Topics Community, Documentary, Editorial, Essays, Migration, Minority, Photography, Photojournalism, Portraiture, Travel
If it weren’t for their nationality, most of Monaco’s citizens wouldn’t be able to afford to live in their own country. Native Monégasques are a minority of the coastal Mediterranean principality, which is the wealthiest, second-smallest, and most densely populated country in the world. Monégasques represent only 24% of the total population; foreigners of 140 different nationalities make up the majority. In fact, Monégasque nationality is difficult to obtain as it implies various rights and advantages unaccessible to simple Monaco residents.

Citizenship is not granted at birth unless a parent is Monegasque, but it can also be obtained by marriage, adoption, or naturalisation. However, naturalisation is ultimately decided by the ruling Sovereign Prince, Albert ll, and means joining a united and tightly knit community around the Sovereign Family. Out of hundreds of applications each year, only a dozen are accepted. 

Because Monégasques are a minority, the Prince Government uniquely supports them, providing adequate housing based on their income, and hosting events that are an integral and exclusive part of the country’s social and cultural heritage. Since 1976, the study of Munegascu, Monaco’s native language, has been compulsory in public primary schools following its near extinction.

Although I was born and raised in the Principality of Monaco, I was not granted the nationality as my parents are not Monégasques. Saying where I am from has always been a difficult question to answer; I have no legitimate belonging to the country where I was born, I'm seen as a foreigner in my birth country as well as in my country of origin.

Through a series of environmental portraits, this project aims to illustrate the real Monegasque way of living along with underlining their identity.

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