A philosopher with a camera, a landscape portraitist, a poetic renderer of images of reality; and also – and perhaps especially at one particular point in his career – of architecture. Luigi Ghirri, the famous Emilian photographer, branched into architecture in 1983, producing a corpus of photographs for the magazine Lotus International, focusing on individual architects and on the Triennale di Milano exhibitions, as well as curating broader editorial projects such as Paesaggio Italiano (1989) and the photographic section of Atlante Metropolitano (1991).
Ghirri looked at architecture – whether by important masters, ordinary or even kitsch - from a different, extremely personal perspective, never emphatic but always anti-rhetorical. He grasped its essence, explored its relationship with the context and the landscape into which it was inserted. With affection. He positively loved architectural projects oscillating between sophisticated renaissances and rural neo-realism, provincial, suburban. Cities to a lesser extent. His images capture spaces from which the themes of identity, time and memory emanate: his colours are thus pallid, calm, often tending towards the pastel. He said himself: “I am interested in ephemeral architecture, the world of the provinces, objects regarded as bad taste but which have never seemed so to me, objects laden with desires, dreams, collective memories … windows, mirrors, stars, palms, atlases, globes, books, museums and people seen through images.”
Luigi Ghirri. The Landscape of Architecture features more than 300 photographs, including original prints and projected images – many of which have never been seen before – from the Lotus archive and the Triennale di Milano. It also includes a selection of publications and other material that highlight the relationship between his extraordinary photographic talent and the publishing and critical world, which fuelled his work on architecture.
Triennale di Milano
25th May – 9th September
Tuesday – Sunday: 10.30 am – 8.30 pm