Mind Map of Love (Photo Book)
Going away in order to arrive. The Munich businessman Christian Zott set off on a 5000 kilometer journey. On foot, almost 40 kilometers a day through the South of Europe from the most westerly point in Portugal to the Eastern border on the Bosporus. The book, which was developed during this hike, is an unusual reflection on the forms of love in our times.
In “Mind Map of Love” Christian Zott takes his readers on a journey through a universal love story, from the magic of the first night to deep, intimate love – or to desperation, hate and violence. What’s special about this novel: the readers can themselves decide the fate of the main figures Romeo and Juliet. After many of the individual episodes there are turning points at which the reader can decide how the story progresses. The result is an original novel that is a multifaceted kaleidoscope of love in 11 different variations.
A mind map is used in psychology and in the management field as a cognitive technique to order and visualize one’s thoughts. Christian Zott used this tool to delve deeper into the phenomenon “love”. His novel “Mind Map of Love” is comprised of 21 chapters in the form of complete, self-contained short stories. These take place at various locations – mostly European cities but also pastoral scenescapes – which are never specifically named but which are always clearly identifiable.
The second part of the book is dedicated to photographs. On the one side are photos by Christian Zott, taken during his journey, center on an underlying feeling of questing observation; they are based on movement, spontaneity, the experience lived, the new day. This creates a symbolic language that assigns motifs to an emotion, from falling in love for the first time to romantic connection, through to the depths of despair in love and loneliness. The Italian photographic artist approached the subject from a different angle. Whilst the travel photos by Christian Zott are spontaneous signatures of the moment, Mauro Fiorese approaches the topic with subtle photographic mise-en-scènes, mostly showing couples of various constellations. His playful and yet profound treatment of the topic creates a strongly contrasting set of photographic portraits.
The result is a ‘compendium’ of the many manifestations of love, with the most beautiful and the ugliest, the most sincere and the lowest, the most animalistic and the most tender of emotions. The journey itself becomes a strong metaphor for love. On his journey along the Mediterranean coast Christian Zott met many “seekers and lovers”. This book is dedicated to them.