Search
  • Jacopo Rufo

Hold your breath


The silence is so strong that I can almost hear the sound of time passing by. The earth’s still rotating and the hole the sun’s still burning, the air’s surprisingly clean and a third of the global population is under lockdown.


For the first time in our lives, we are obliged to sit and mentally connect ourselves with a surrounding bounded with our fragilities. No matter how hard you try to detach yourself to the world, engaging in directed conscious thoughts is what makes us humans.


Because that’s what we are: humans.


After all.

Enjoying communal singing from apartment balconies have been enjoyed by millions on social media but the truth is different. We did it for a while, the first day it was barely impressive, but in a few days, everything turned almost silent.


The risk now is not just about our immune system, it’s about our mental health. The only way to be immune is to accept the quarantine, to accept that all we have to do is chill and wait on our sofa, always remembering how privileged are we in comparison with doctors, nurses or just homeless people.


As Miller said: “The mind is its own place, and in itself can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven..”

Remember? A couple of months ago we were all doing our shit like nothing, fully focused on complaining and enjoying life. Making projects and planning things.


Then everything gently stopped, hours became days, and days a week. Now, in Italy, it’s not just “Monday, March 30th”. It’s “the fourth week, the twenty-first day”.


Our perception of the outside world’s reduced to a few breaths a minute consumed along the sidewalk from our flat’s home to the supermarket, or to the dumpsters, or the pharmacy.

A few people are still working, the ones who have to. I can see them, driving on the deserted streets as never before. Not even the sky has ever been so quiet, aircrafts flights high in the silent blue. Nobody’s landing here.


Yesterday night we ordered a pizza on JustEat, this was our first human contact in three weeks.

For the first time in a long time, we are actually sharing something big. Billions of people are confined, our habits are now quite similar all around the world.


The anxiety about our beloved ones, the concept of freedom, the silence in the streets, the emptiness and the beauty of the basics, the way people have to deal with it.


This is something everybody all around the world can relate these days.

A warm and quiet March is about to end, more than 2 billion people are holding breath.


Rome is quiet, and so we are.


All these photos, these stories and these feelings will be collected in a book you can already preorder tapping here.


Purchasing this book you support this project, you contribute to a collective memory we must preserve and you help me to survive in this hard period.


Created by Jacopo Rufo

L'aspetto fiscale e commerciale di questa attività è gestito da SMart Italia.

Maggiori informazioni qui.

Jacopo Rufo All rights reserved.

Unless otherwise indicated, all materials on these pages are copyrighted by Jacopo Rufo. All rights reserved. No part of these pages, either text or image may be used for any purpose other than personal use. Therefore, reproduction, modification, storage in a retrieval system or retransmission, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical or otherwise, for reasons other than personal use, is strictly prohibited without prior written permission.