Radicalia by Piero Martinello


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Radicalia by Piero Martinello

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‘Radical’ is something ‘acting in depth; concerning an issue beginning with its essential principles’, according to Salvatore Battaglia’s definition in the Grande dizionario della lingua italiana. With this as my starting point I travelled around Italy in search of women and men who – each in their own way and for different reasons – have embraced radical choices and lifestyles.

Fools, ravers, criminals, devouts and cloistered nuns: the subjects come to life in a series of portraits in which the photographic medium appears at times in its pure form, at others grafted in items of vernacular iconography (passport pictures, holy pictures, mug shots). Everything comes together in a concept album where the face becomes a prism through which to investigate the human need to undertake extreme and unconventional life paths.

The book is divided in 5 chapters:
1), ‘Deviation’ is about town fools,
2), ‘Devotion’ talks about the relation between Saints and Devouts,
3), ‘Eversion’ depicts ten clans of Mafia,
4), ‘Contemplation’ faces cloistered nuns,
5), ‘Evasion’ is about nightlife, the world of raves and techno music events.

Martinello made a stunning document of five groups of people living in the fringes of society. The book and exhibition are very precise, in a way that can only be done when someone has a total devotion and passion for a subculture.

Erik Kessels

‘Radicalia’ is a single long-term project, which was made possible by the Luz Fellowship that Luz Photo Agency granted me in November 2012.

Le Temps: Qui sont ces marginaux dont vous présentez les photographies?
Piero Martinello: J’ai divisé ce projet en cinq chapitres. Il y a les fous des villages, les saints et leurs dévots, les mafieux, les nonnes cloîtrées et les ravers. Pour les mafieux, j’ai utilisé les images prises lors de leur arrestation et j’ai commandé des illustrations reproduisant les sortes d’arbres généalogiques qu’utilisait la police afin de se repérer dans ces clans. Quant aux religieuses, je leur ai demandé leurs photos de passeport parce que c’est le seul moment où elles sortent du couvent, avec celui où elles votent. Cela permettait d’éviter le cliché de la nonne derrière sa grille.

Le Temps -interview FR BLOG

Arles BLOG

Folli, ravers, criminali, devoti, monache di clausura: i soggetti scelti da Martinello prendono vita in una serie di ritratti in cui il linguaggio fotografico si esprime talvolta in forma pura, talvolta innestato su elementi dell’iconografia vernacolare (fototessere, santini, immagini segnaletiche), in un concept album dove il volto diventa la chiave per investigare il bisogno umano di intraprendere percorsi di vita estremi ed esterni ai cammini convenzionali.

the mammoth reflex BLOG

Additional information

Weight 1.200 kg