The title of this photographic series “Schatten” is taken from a classic German Expressionist movie directed by Arthur Robison in 1923. In the movie, the characters’ shadows, projected on a wall, acquired independent life to represent the innermost emotions of the main characters of the movie. In my photos, I tried to recreate a similar theater of shadows representing those feelings and emotions that bind me to the photographed objects. Indeed, these are only apparently anonymous or commonly used objects. They actually evoke me feelings and memories of the people to whom they belonged to: my father’s hat and shoes, my mother’s sewing machine, my grandmother’s radio, my great-grandparents’ lanterns of the late 19th century: objects that are part of my family history and have always been part of my daily life. The reference to the German Expressionism is not just formal or stylistic, but mostly theoretical. This movie genre, which I studied and loved since my university experience, implements infact a radical synthesis between imagination and style to achieve a form of extremely intense expression which would lead to the desires and to the inner fears, to the subjectivity of the individual. Through the strong contrast of light and shadow and distortion of reality, all the elements of the scene, places and objects too, are changed into living entities full of soul. Similarly I tried to recreate in this photographic series an atmosphere similar to that of the Expressionist cinema, trying to recover the same theoretical matrix, giving life to the emotional components that necessarily I connect to the subjects of the photos. Just as in the theater of the shadows of Robison’s film. The emotional components that make up the series are mainly the nostalgia of memory, represented by the warm light of the old family slide projector used to create the strong contrast of light and darkness that features the pictures, and the fear of the oblivion of the memory, represented by the outbreak of the dark. The ray of light produced by the projector Ferrania 1960s evokes the way my family and I used to share memories in the dark of a room. The contrast between the light and the shadow has been obtained through a calibrated use of long exposures.
2015 – “Schatten” – solo exhibition at Scoglio di Quarto
Gallery, Milan – Milano Photofestival 2015
2015 – “Schatten” (Book) – C.F.P. Bauer 60th anniversary, Milan