Monica de Cardenas Galleria, Milan – Italy, 2018
LINDA FREGNI NAGLER, JOCHEN LEMPERT, JOHAN ÖSTERHOLM, BARBARA PROBST, LETICIA RAMOS, ALESSANDRA SPRANZI, JOHN STEZAKER
May 17th to July 27th 2018
The exhibition suggests an idea of photography as a training of the gaze. It features artists who are experiencing epochal changes in the way of perceiving space and time, images and their multiplication and spread. It outlines a discourse on the potential of photography as a tool of knowledge that restores to the gaze something it is perhaps losing, due to accumulation or cultural blindness: the ability to see and to sense the mutual relations among images.
The desire to return to the basic elements of photography – light and time – to reactivate obsolete techniques and procedures, to get back in touch with the miracle of analog photography and the darkroom, or to insist on always using the same camera, is intertwined with an attitude of reinterpretation of artifacts that belong to the dawn of photography, or research and gathering of images that already exist – by others, anonymous or humble images – found where no one was looking any longer. Images, these last ones, observed and re-observed, cut and rephotographed, magnified, enlarged, grouped, overlapped, reorganized, enabling them to still reveal their semantic potential. In the photographs we can recognize that mixture of art and science, creative inspiration and technological invention of the pioneers, or a technological sophistication that moved forward with the discoveries of those inventors. Works that involve the viewer in an act of complicity, force him into a situation of intimacy.
“Never leave photos lying around” – as the title of the show quotes from the film Ascenseur pour l’échafaud (Elevator to the Gallows) by Louis Malle – because you never know what an artist might do with them.
A return to experimentation that in the practice of Leticia Ramos (Santo Antônio da Patrulha,1976, lives in São Paulo) feeds on the fascination with images obtained by etching them on a photosensitive surface. The Brazilian artist presents a new series of photograms that reconstruct the image of a sculpture on photographic paper – seeming like a tribute, starting with the title, to the repertoire of organic concretism of her culture – in which light brings out the variety of surfaces, full and empty zones, in an infinite game of visual possibilities.