Bill Phelps
Companion in Rome
Spring 2021
ARTPIL / Prescription .125

It was four years ago Artpil was founded, on the steps of the Colosseum, under the dome of San Pietro, or in the halls of the Pantheon; or perhaps by the ruins of the Roman Forum, along the canals of the Tiber, and in the cobble stone alleys of Centro storico. Artpil has returned to its origins, like a prodigal after having wandered for a time, all roads have led us back to this place.

Companion in Rome, whom Rome makes as old as Rome,
old as that peeling fresco whose flaking paint
is the clouds, you are crouched in some ancient pensione
where the only new thing is paper, like young St. Jerome
with his rock vault. Tonsured, you’re muttering a line
that your exiled country will soon learn by heart,
to a flaking, sunlit ledge where a pigeon gurgles.
Midsummer’s furnace casts everything in bronze.
Traffic flows in slow coils, like the doors of a baptistry,
and even the kitten’s eyes blaze with Byzantine icons.
That old woman in black, unwrinkling your sheet with a palm,
her home is Rome, its history is her house.
Every Caesar’s life has shrunk to a candle’s column
in her saucer. Salt cleans their bloodstained togas.
She stacks up the popes like towels in cathedral drawers;
now in her stone kitchen, under the domes of onions,
she slices a light, as thick as cheese, into epochs…

Derek Walcott / from Midsummer

  • Patrick Weldé: Freiheit
    Goswell Road

    On the occasion of our exhibition with Weldé at CFAlive Milan L’AMOUR TOUJOURS, we publish a new edition of the previously sold-out book that we produced with Weldé in 2017, FREIHEIT. All of the photographs in FREIHEIT were taken by Weldé on disposable cameras between 2011-2015. They show a tender side to the artist and his friend circle, and the purest form of trust. (more…)

  • Fumi Nagasaka: Dora, Yerkwood, Walker County, Alabama

    During the 2016 US Presidential elections Japanese photographer, Fumi Nagasaka, became intrigued by the rural and southern USA. She had lived in New York City for a decade but despite travelling the world, had yet to visit the rest of the US. All this changed when her friend, Tanya Rouse, invited her to her hometown of Dora, Alabama. Nagasaka continued to visit Dora over several years, gradually building a photographic archive of her visits. (more…)

  • Myriam Boulos: What’s Ours

    A searing, diaristic portrayal of a city and society in revolution by Magnum nominee Myriam Boulos. In her debut monograph, Myriam Boulos casts an unflinching eye on the revolution that began in Lebanon in 2019 with protests against government corruption and austerity – culminating with the aftermath of the devastating Beirut port explosion of August 2020. (more…)