Giacomo De Stefano
One man. Who is this crazy man? Who is this prophet of the water, this “man on the river” who seems almost to be playing the role of Forrest Gump in a boat?
Giacomo describes himself as a “simple person”. After spending many years of his life working as a researcher and a documentary film-maker, he made it his aim in life to make men and women of the consumer culture conscious (at any cost) of how their style of life is decisive for the environment.
He lives on a boat in the Venetian lagoon: He lives with little, because often “less is more”, and he can withstand almost all conditions. In 2009 his last project, “Un Altro Po” (www.unaltropo.wordpress.com) took him along the River Po from Venice to Pavia, a journey with daily broadcasts on italian Radio 24 and with more than 200,000 contacts on his blog.
Profile Giacomo De Stefano born in Asti, 44 years old. He grew up in the Alps, near the Mont Blanc region. His love for the mountains was curtailed after an accident paralysed him for a short time. He moved to Venice where he passed a degree and a Master’s in Architecture, and where he discovered water and the old traditional wooden boats of the Venice lagoon. He took on work as an architect, dish-washer, dog-sitter, art dealer, project manager and many other ordinary and not-so-ordinary jobs. With uncontrollably itchy feet, Giacomo worked as an assistant for an Italian filmmaker in China on a documentary about mass tourism. It took 4 months and involved travelling 20,000 km. That experience revealed to him the huge damages of the tourism industry. So he decided to devote his life to finding a sustainable way of travelling and of protecting the world’s waterways. This is his fourth project centred on tourism and water. The previous ones have been Sulle ali del leone (on the wings of the lion), a sailing odyssey along the ancient Venetian republic’s routes, Happy Albania, along the coast of the Mediterranean’s last paradise, Canto Mediterraneo, a sailing cruise in search of the musical history of the Mediterranean from Venice to Istanbul (from an idea by Fine Shaumburg), and Un Altro Po, sailing and rowing along Italy’s longest river.
He lives on an old wooden boat in the Venetian lagoon. Or somewhere in the Mediterranean sea.