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Luigi Ghirri and the Photography of Place

Interdisciplinary Perspectives


Edited By Marina Spunta and Jacopo Benci

The photographer Luigi Ghirri (1943–1992) was one of the most significant Italian artists of the late twentieth century. This volume – the first scholarly book-length publication on Ghirri to appear in English – introduces his photographic and critical work to a broader audience and positions Ghirri as a key voice within global artistic debates. It breaks new ground by approaching Ghirri’s œuvre from a wide range of interdisciplinary perspectives, in order to take account of the breadth of his interests, the variety of his projects and the far-reaching impact of his work as a practitioner, writer, theorist and curator, both in the field of photography and beyond. Drawing on different approaches from disciplines including art history, theory of photography, literary and cultural studies, architecture, cartography, and place and landscape studies, the essays in the volume show how Ghirri redefined contemporary photography and helped shape the «spatial» or «landscape» turn in Italy and further afield.


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List of Figures vii Acknowledgements ix Marina Spunta and Jacopo Benci Introduction: Re-siting Luigi Ghirri xiii Part I Luigi Ghirri’s Photography in Context 1 Giuliano Sergio 1 Luigi Ghirri, Minimal Journeys: Icons, Landscapes, Architectures 3 Nicoletta Leonardi 2 Between Reality and Representation: The Souvenir Function of Luigi Ghirri’s Photographic Trompe-l’œils 25 Paolo Barbaro 3 Luigi Ghirri’s Photography from the 1970s to the 1980s: The Working Image, the Artistic Language 47 Laura Gasparini 4 Luigi Ghirri between Research and Curatorial Activity 67 Jacopo Benci 5 On Some Hitherto Overlooked Sources of Luigi Ghirri’s Work, 1972–1982 91 vi Part II Luigi Ghirri’s Photography in an Interdisciplinary Dialogue 119 Tania Rossetto 6 Luigi Ghirri’s Cartographic Portrayals: A Review through Map Theory 121 Matteo Cassani Simonetti 7 Words, Image, Architecture: Vittorio Savi and Luigi Ghirri 143 Raffaella Perna 8 Landscapes in Music: Luigi Ghirri and Record Covers 163 Anna Botta 9 Of Fireflies and Photography: Pasolini, Didi-Huberman, Ghirri 179 Marina Spunta 10 Narrating the Experience of Place: Luigi Ghirri and Literature 199 Epifanio Ajello 11 The Photographer and the Painter: Some Observations around the Things of Giorgio Morandi and Luigi Ghirri 225 Bibliography 251 Notes on Contributors 285 Index 291

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