Beauty is the source of the Sicilian imagination, and, for
Spano, the “reimagination” of Sicily (a Sicily beyond crime) has been the
journey of his life.
Throughout the Mark Spano’s life, when mentioning his
Sicilian heritage, “mafia” was the first word he most often heard in
response. The general public has only a single reference when it comes to
Sicily, and that is crime.
Little has been written for the popular market on the
cultural or historic relevance of Sicily. The most invaded place on the
planet, the three-sided island’s story rivals both Greece and Egypt as a
primary source for Western ideas. Sicily is more fascinating and more
diverse than so many of the more popular regions in France and other
parts of Italy. But for crime, Sicily has gone unexplored.
Mount Etna, an active volcano blesses the island with rich
soil, abundant minerals and yet another source of turmoil. The fertility
of the island is a source of great abundance. Food, family, the
land and sea are all central to life in Sicily. These are the
component parts of the Sicilian love of beauty. For Sicilians, beauty is
the promise that there is love in life when it has so often been absent.
Beauty is the source of the Sicilian imagination, and, for Spano, the
“reimagination” of Sicily (a Sicily beyond crime) has been the journey of
Through years of study and travel, he has attained the
knowledge of a very different Sicily. He has seen the places where
Sicilians work, play, pray, love and do battle in a sometimes hostile
homeland. By witnessing how Sicilians are capable of the best and worst
in humanity, the stark devastation and incomparable beauty of the island
itself, Spano has touched upon the great dichotomy that is Sicily. His
book will resonate across that gulf.
Writer and filmmaker Mark Spano is of Sicilian heritage. He
grew-up in Kansas City, Missouri in an intercity Italian-American
neighborhood. Spano is producing a feature documentary entitled
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