How Google Photographed A Lost, Rogue, Remote Italian Village That Artists Rebuilt

Jun 15, 2017 1045

BY: Leonard Sommer

Roughly 120 years before Google launched its Google Street View Technology in several cities of the USA, a major earthquake struck the region of Liguria in northwest Italy. On Feb. 23, 1887, at 6:21 a.m. most buildings in the small village of Bussana Vecchia were severely damaged. The old village was abandoned and all of its buildings declared dangerous. About 60 years later, immigrants from Southern Italy started illegally settling the ghost town. After a few forced evictions by the Italian Police in the 1950s, the authorities ordered the destruction of all first floor stairways and rooftops.

In the early days of the Hippie Era, Clizia and Vanni Giuffre – two Italian artists – discovered the uniqueness and potential of the abandoned village and decided to found the International Artist Community of Bussana Vecchia. The spirit of the organization was somewhat idealistic: to be able to live simply and work artistically within the village.

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