Out of the italian dictionary, “ganzo” or “ganza” means “lover figure”, with a clear derogatory way.
In Tuscany and Florence, these nouns, are commonly used as adjectives, with a much happier connotation.
For a Tuscan, “ganzo” means something interesting and attractive, it stand for cool, or a sort of, but even something more. And if in the first place, it has an almost funny sound, at the end of my analysis, on the border line between something serious and a joke, we will understand that its meaning is far deeper.
“Ganzo”, beauty, art and photography
Philosophers and great thinkers, from Plato to Benedetto Croce, during the course of human history have produced streams of thoughts, filled treatises on aesthetics, marked the difference between objective and subjective beauty… and then suddenly, one fine morning … somewhere a Tuscan invented the word “ganzo” as an adjective, and since then, nothing has been the same again!
Being born and having lived my life in Florence, I can make an almost infinite list of what “ganzo” is for us, and I do not want to upset our cousins from other cities such as Pisa, Siena, Arezzo : any Tuscan can make a list of what for him “ganzo” is!
For a Florentine “ganzo” is Palazzo Vecchio profile, is to bring your girlfriend to Piazzale Michelangelo on a summer evening or going to see fireworks for St. John (24th June) on the banks of Arno river. And “ganza” is the Uffizi gallery, Piazza Santa Croce, the birth of Venus or even lying free on the lawns of Cascine park. “Ganze” will be choreographies of Fiorentina soccer team supporters during any sunday football match, “ganza” is Brunelleschi’s dome and “ganzo” is a tripe sandwich in San Frediano.
But as Florentines, we also know how to appreciate what happens beyond our walls and for us, again, “ganzo” is listening to Mozart or even to a solo by Jimi Hendrix, is watching a Fellini film or even a Quentin Tarantino one.
By making a short summary, for us it is an expression of human genius, it is something universally appreciated, it is what good we have to express, it is all that the world offers us as a surprise, even when everything around seems a huge mess.
In our wedding photography, “ganzo” is a path, is the constant search for expressions and emotions, a spontaneous smile, tears of happiness of a father who sees his daughter for the first time dressed as a bride. “Ganzo” is to put our couple in an unexpected corner of our frame or wrap them in counter sunlight, it is to tell their story in a way that surprises them, emotion them and us at the same time.
For us “ganzo” is actually synonymous of beauty, even unexpected beauty, that we can spot in everything around us, if we look with new and different eyes: at the end, only beauty, only something “ganzo” will save us.
Being honest, the paternity of my dissertation, must be attributed to the great teacher, musician and guitarist Antonio “Tony” Vaiana, I was fortunate enough to be a student of, and with whom for hours and hours, we talked only about things “ganze”…