A combination of visual narratives, publishing initiatives and the passion for books in private collections and contemporary editions.

In the digital age there is a proliferation of publications, mostly from independent publishers, where the linking of image and book refocuses on the need for art as object. The art book, already used as a form of expression by the historical avant-garde movements, defines identity from the mid-sixties on, through the works of Ed Ruscha, Dieter Roth and Daniel Spoerri. From its very beginning, the circulation of the printed page enabled authors to promote and spread their ideas all over the world to a vast public, and in a cheap way.

The exhibition, curated by Francesca Cattoi, Mario Commone and Saul Marcadent, starts from this moment and traces a path from the sixties to today, focusing on the vitality and complexity of the combination of book and photography. Particular attention is dedicated to the narrative dimension of the publications selected, where a spontaneous life experience (Jan Dibbets, Richard Long, Dennis Oppenheim) or a conceptually-constructed experience (Sophie Calle, Martin Parr, Armin Linke), is documented through photography.

Leggere fotografie — Reading photographs is an evolving exhibition which lasts from December to May but changes halfway, introducing new publications and materials to enrich the narrative and present new visions and points of view.

The exhibition unfolds along the three rooms of the ground floor of the CAMeC Centre of Modern and Contemporary Art of La Spezia, emphasising the passionate aspect of the gathering, conservation and propagation of important collections and focusing on the contemporary publishing scene through individual projects (Anouk Kruithof, Lorenzo Vitturi) and collective projects like those of Nieves Books, Roma Publications.

The presentation of the works, which for practical and conservation reasons cannot all be made available to the public, makes use of digital supports in order to show the contents in their entirety.

Some concepts underlying Leggere fotografie — Reading photographs are connected to the specific qualities of books: their independence from the traditional forms of art, their potentially collective and at the same time personal and intimate character, their discretion. John Perreault writes: “A book doesn’t impose itself on the environment. Lying silently between its two protective covers, it doesn’t increase visual pollution”.  

Information and credits

Curated by: Francesca Cattoi, Mario Commone, Saul Marcadent
Documentary:Elena Mattioli, Flavio Perazzini
Digital Reproduction of books: Roberto Buratta
Corporate image:Pomo
Installation:Marta Manini
Dates:8 dicembre 2013 – 1 giugno 2014






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