Hungry Artist: Post #3

thoughts and curiosities of an open-ended trip

About the trip: I am hungry for new smells, sounds, textures, tastes, and colors. I am traveling to absorb these cravings, to experience and digest them. Some will be drawn, some will be photographed, and others eaten or wafted through curious nostrils. I'm traveling to learn about myself, and to learn from myself.

by Nina Berinstein


Italy is extroverted. Opinions (loud ones) saturate this boot-of-a-peninsula. They are just as loud as the car horns that yell at one another, miraculously evading collisions, and consistently communicating frustration. Language tumbles out of every region's mouth differently, a testament to the kingdoms that make up a now unified country.

Buildings are orange, burnt and peeling, as if they have tried to shed their skin over the years. Where they peel, they reveal, they allude, they ask questions. How long has it taken for this outermost layer to curl off the facade it once clung to? And how? Each exposed pipe, each chunk of missing plaster, each visible sub-layer of paint hints at a narrative that can only be imagined. What is not there ignites curiosity, just as it does amidst the ruins of the Parthenon or the Roman Forum.

Funky cheese rinds match the colors of the peeling buildings that surround them. Cured meat packed in its thin lining is hung in rows above butchery stalls. Napoli pizza is so confident in its marinara that it does not even need cheese. Unapologetic blocks of lard applied liberally, fried macaroni and cheese, gelato flavors that include chunks of brioche. Decadence is expected.