The area was originally occupied by the displaced persons of the bombing of San Lorenzo in 1943, who built shacks under the arches of the Acquedotto Felice. From the’50s Mandrione became famous as an area of gypsies and sex workers.
The Mandrione is today a zone of Rome wich is in gradual recovery and composed be residential buildings, laboratories, artisans‘ shops, ateliers with main road following the the ubiquitous Acquedotto Felice.
Mandrione is mentioned in several literary works and movies, including those of Pier Paolo Pasolini who was often portrayed walking through Mandrione and its surroundings.
Of great interest to the survey conduced in April 1956 by the anthropologist Franco Cagnetta and the photographer Franco Pinna. Supported by Giangiacomo Feltrinelli, the survey was closely followed by important personalities of the cultural sphere as Elsa Morante, Goffredo Parise and Pier Paolo Pasolini.
This first experience was the beginning of a larger project by Giorgio Nataletti e Diego Carpitella who researched the „borgate romane“, the outskirts of Rome, especially studying music by gypsies living in the vicinity of the street Casilina. Dances and music of Roma were documented and combined by the photographs of Franco Pinna.
The project continued with the visit of the area of the street Tuscolana, leading up to the sections of the barracks of Acquedotto Felice at Tor Fiscale. The photographs produced by Pinna are considered among the most important photographs by Neorealism.
Susanna Perin