|Notes on POMPEII
Don Freeman has made two trips to the Italian ruins of Herculaneum and Pompeii over the last ten years, and he anticipates many more visits will be necessary to complete the series he calls "Pompeii." Freeman, who has a passion for architecture, artifacts and statues, began the series out of a desire to document "the bare bones of what was beautiful" about the sites of two of the world's oldest civilizations, both destroyed by the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in 79 AD.
"I didn't want Pompeii to look realistic or descriptive of what occurred there," Freeman says. "Rather than the tragedy, this series is about the brilliance of the architecture and the vision of its creators." But one senses that "Pompeii" is about something more than architecture for Freeman, who says he keeps going back to try to capture the feeling he had on his first visit: "Like waking up from a nightmare, the calm after the storm, the afterlife . . . " he muses.
Freeman uses his camera to pick up what his naked eyes can't see in the shadows of so many seemingly empty rooms. The film is like a spirit-seeking "sixth sense," facilitating his growing imperative to capture the spirituality of these soul-drenched sites.