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Away From Tourist Eyes, Marietta Varga’s Captivating Work Depicts Another Side Of Rome

Another Rome

Inspired by the architecture in Italy’s capital that is less prevalent in public consciousness, Hungarian photographer Marietta Varga set about to create ‘Another Rome’: a cinematic series of images shot on film that eschew the tourist traps of of the city—depicting the striking, geometric buildings not encumbered by crowds.

“When we think of Rome, many envisage the Colosseum, the Trevi Fountain, the Pantheon, and the Vatican Museum,” Varga explains to IGNANT. “People romanticize the streets—narrow cobblestone lanes with hanging clothes and stray cats,” she says. Due to its status as one of the most popular city destinations, the center of Rome is often noisy and overcrowded. “Contrarily, the Esposizione Universale Roma (EUR) district is completely different,” she asserts. “It’s Rome’s residential and business district, so on weekends there’s almost no people there.” For Varga, this locality is an architectural haven. “The streets are wide and the buildings are huge,” she explains. “The architecture is so unusual compared to the classic Renaissance basilicas, I was so surprised when I first discovered the area that I forgot where I was.”

Since this first experience, Varga has traveled back and forth between her hometown, Budapest, and Rome multiple times: capturing her grainy, architectural images during Golden Hour, when the sun is at its lowest point before setting—casting a stunning, hazy light across the monumental architecture. As the viewer’s eye traces the details of each frame, one can discern the full scope of Varga’s chosen locations: sandy tones and peach-colored hues are balanced by the intricate forms and strong lines of each building’s structure. ⁠“The strange atmosphere and the bizarre quietness is what I really felt when I visited,” she admits. “As I was staring out of the window I was amazed by the beautiful Mediterranean view with those magical lights; it’s always the same breathtaking feeling.”

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All images © Marietta Varga

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