During the Tertiary Period (66 to 2.6 million years ago), Mount Titano and San Marino Republic’s area was covered by water, so as several lands of the current Mediterranean coasts.
Before the publication of Charles Lyell’s Principles of Geology (1830-1833), October 23rd 4004 b.C. was believed to be the day Earth was been created. Thanks to the geological research campaigns of the XIX century, and in opposition to the theory of catastrophism according of which the Earth has been shaped by sudden violent events, actualist theory emerged: the origin of geological phenomena of the past should be understood through the observation of what is still happening in the present – earthquakes, eruptions, bradyseism, water erosion. Nowadays we know that Earth and life forms’ current shapes are the results of both catastrophic events and of slow and continuous processes of transformation, but thanks to that debate and for the first time in history, awareness about Deep Time raised: Earth’s – and life on Earth’s – age is unfathomable, ungraspable from a human perspective just like the infinity of space.
Our interest in the unknowable doesn’t only apply to humans’ relationship with time, but also to the alterity, both at an inter- and intra-specific level. To define our connection with the Other as based on dialogue and empathy emphasizes its limitations, denying the unmeasurable and radical difference of the Other’s otherness. Love, for Altalena, is the encounter with the indecipherable secret of the Other, with a mystery that no dialogue can neutralize: we can’t actually feel what the other is feeling. Love should rise from this shared impossibility of sharing.