Paolo is a 33 years old nurse in the ICU of the hospital in Cremona, Lombardy. His picture, portraying doctors with unrecognizable faces, represents a dramatically human situation

This is one of the iconic photos of the pandemic. The shot was taken by a nurse, the 33-year-old Paolo Miranda, who has worked in the ICU of the hospital of Cremona for three years. The ward has become the epicenter of the struggle against Coronavirus, a place where doctors and nurses get sick too.

The Neapolitan Paolo has always had a hobby: photography. His Instagram account is full of beautiful pictures of travels, portrays, happy memories, almost all in black and white. When this emergency first began, he didn’t think to take pictures in the ward, where people suffered and died. The change came after last 15th March. He realized, by the increasing emergency, that what was going on had to be documented. And who better than him could do it discreetly?

This picture is very delicate as well as it is peculiar. It shows the pain felt by his colleague, who is driven to despair by exhaustion, after hours of intense work, and by the fear that it could all have been in vain . There is nothing more to be done for many ICU patients. The photo of the doctor, who notices the discouragement felt by the nurse in the corridor of the hospital and tries to comfort her, expresses the mercy that emerges. The photo, as stated by the same author, is taken with a camera Fujifilm x100 with a single fixed lens of 35 mm, a medium wide-angle so as to take a simple portrait of pain and a better general look in a place like the hospital.

The protagonists, who didn’t realize they were being photographed, are made completely unrecognizable by the protective equipment making this photo even more unique. The moment captured, on the other hand, is probably being shared by many health care workers all over the world.

During this unusual time, Paolo speaks very little, sleeps much less and works hard. His wife Corinne is a nurse too. His pictures often portray exhausted colleagues, who want to fight to the end this monster that took away so many friends.

Translated by Daniela Marsala