Wish it Was a Coming Out is a long-term project with which I wish to explore the double taboo represented by the link between homosexuality and old age in Italy, starting from my lesbianism. I began exploring the life experiences of a group of gays and lesbians between sixty and ninety years old. I photographed these people as couples or alone, in their own homes, in scenes of true intimacy. In this way, I am trying to provide insight into the lives of gay and lesbian people in Italy today who experience that contradictory and fascinating phase of life linked to ageing.
Melissa Ianniello (Naples, 1991) is a documentary photographer who lives in Bologna. After graduating in Philosophy, she pursued her photography training through periods of studying in Bologna and New York, with photographers such as Michael Ackerman, Carolyn Drake, Erica McDonald and Davide Monteleone. In 2018, she began her long-term project entitled Wish it Was a Coming Out. With this project, she won the “SI FEST Lanfranco Colombo Prize” and was selected as a finalist for the “Pesaresi Award”, the “Voglino Prize – Italy Photo Award”, and the “Gran Premio Lumix Portfolio Italia Award”.