The Exedra of Villa Manin

Passariano di Codroipo (Italy). I have photographed several times Villa Manin, an architectural masterpiece of the eighteenth century and today location for many important exhibitions. But I have always photographed its facade, both by day and by night, behind the big gate that closes the entrance. But some days ago, aided by a fantastic autumn sunset, I thought to turn the back to the main part of the building and to photograph the impressive exedra: a sequence of arcs and columns that seems hugging all those admiring it.

Passariano di Codroipo (Udine). Ho fotografato diverse volte la bellissima Villa Manin, gioiello di architettura del ‘700 e oggi sede di importanti mostre. Ma ne ho sempre fotografato la facciata, sia di giorno che di notte, dietro l’enorme cancello che ne delimita l’ingresso. Ma alcuni giorni fa, complice anche un meraviglioso tramonto autunnale, ho pensato di dare le spalle al corpo principale della villa e di fotografarne l’imponente esedra: una sequenza di archi e colonne che sembra abbracciare tutti quelli che la ammirano.

1 Facebook Twitter Google + Pinterest
The Ceiling of Nostra Donna Church in Pontremoli

Pontremoli (Italy). I must admit: have a sort of obsession for ceilings (here there are some samples from this blog) and I consider  myself a lucky person because sometimes I find great ones during my trips! Those who have seen me taking photos, can witness that I stay long time curved to find the perfect symmetry above my head: indeed photography is a great passion, and for a passion you can do everything, including painful things 🙂

Anyhow, let me stick on this photo, just to provide some information (well, I don’t have too much to say… just look at it!). This is the ceiling of Nostra Donna Church in Pontremoli: I visited it some weeks ago, and although it was not my first time there, still I noticed that it’s impossible not to remain amazed by this place! It totally captures your eyes, not only with its unusual shape, but also for its decorations on the walls and – of course – on the ceiling.

When I took this photo, the light was quite uniformly illuminating it, so the conditions were perfect for capturing this triumph of colors and scenes. If you have the opportunity to come to Pontremoli and visit the Church of Nostra Donna, do not forget to watch above your head: you will be truly amazed and you will understand my “obsession”! You can trust me…

0 Facebook Twitter Google + Pinterest
A Bottom-Up Approach

Paris (France). I cannot imagine how many people every day take this photo, probably thousands. However, it’s a very challenging shot, since you must find the exact symmetry point, stand well stable and keep the camera on a perfect horizontal plane.

In my case, it was even a bit more tough, because I was testing using the manual focus lens Nikon 55mm f/1.2 AI. It’s an old Nikon glass (it dates back to 1977, almost like me!) but I found it quite impressive in terms of sharpness and precision. And – no need to say – shooting in manual focus is something different, difficult to explain!

I’m confident this will be one of my favorite lens in my bag! I have some more shots from the same photographic tour, I will post them within the next days!

Ah, maybe you are still wondering what is represented here in this photograph: it’s a bottom-up view of the Eiffel Tower in Paris…

0 Facebook Twitter Google + Pinterest
The Cimitero Monumentale  in Milano

Milan (Italy). The “Cimitero Monumentale” in Milano is an old and very large cemetery in the heart of the city. I went there yesterday for another test session of my new Leica Q camera (which is becoming one of my favorite companion, not only for street photography).

The light was very soft – it was more or less 8 PM – and there was nobody around there (the Cemetery itself was already closed). I took few shots, as usual I tried to find the perfect symmetry keeping the uprightness of lines. This is the result.

The Leica Q is an amazing camera: I’m shooting mostly in manual focus, there’s a thin sense of pleasure in doing it for me, especially with the excellent focus peaking feature. I like to alternate street photography – which is not my most typical sector, but I’m enjoying it more and more – with something of more “traditional” for my eye, like this large view of the building’s facade.

Some more shoots with Leica Q will come in the following days! Stay tuned if you are interested in them, and feel free to write me if you have questions or comments!

0 Facebook Twitter Google + Pinterest
One More Photo From The Istanbul Marathon

Istanbul (Turkey). In these days I’m posting many photos about the Vodafone Istanbul Marathon (they are all collected under a common tag). The reason is simple: I have lived in Istanbul for many years, and the marathon is one of the best event for capturing very interesting photos; not only of the city – although the landscape from the Bosphorus Bridge is quite extraordinary – but also of people, which gather on the bridge to walk freely and enjoy an unusual Sunday morning.

And – as a photographer – I think that the best observatory point is exactly the mid of the bridge between the two traffic lanes. Well, I admit one reason is due to my addiction for symmetries. But it’s not only for that: I also love to see the human flow coming toward me and observe every single person, alone or in a group. In the behavior of them I try to understand their relationship with the city and, in a wider view, with the whole country. As I already wrote in one of my previous posts about the Istanbul Marathon, the bridge – which normally is a “transit place” to connect two continents – the day of the marathon becomes a gathering place, the place-to-be where people meet “to-be-there” and externalize their feelings, emotions, sentiments, passions and so on.

This Sunday morning Istanbul will meet on the Bosphorus Bridge (the first one). It would be a mistake not being there…

0 Facebook Twitter Google + Pinterest
29 Ekim Cumhuriyet Bayramimiz Kutlu Olsun

Istanbul (Turkey). The Turkey Republic Holiday is a very important day, probably one of the most celebrated anniversary around the Country. The tradition foresees a sumptuous pyrotechnic show in Istanbul, with fireworks skyrocketing from many places all around the First Bridge crossing the Bosphorus. The event is really unique, and many people gather on the streets to enjoy the show.

This photo was taken in 2012 from the seaside at Eminonu (Sultanahmet). At that time I chose this place because I particularly liked the symmetry of the bridge: I was a bit far from the show, but fireworks were so big and luminous that it was impossible not remaining impressed. I was surrounded by people and although I went there very early, it was very crowded. Luckily, everyone was very respectful of my needs – I guess that they noticed the big camera, the long lens and the tripod, thinking that I was shooting for some magazines or newspapers…

Under the tag 29 October I’m collecting some other photos of this special day, when people greet each others with a proud “29 Ekim Cumhuriyet Bayramimiz Kutlu Olsun!”

0 Facebook Twitter Google + Pinterest
Obsessed by Geometries

Tbilisi (Georgia). Can geometry be an obsession? Can someone be addicted to find the perfect line of symmetry in whatever is in front of his eyes? I’m talking about myself: I must admit that I’m quite obsessed by geometries, even when I do not have my camera in my hands. There’s a sense of self-confidence in the perfection of geometries, something that relaxes my eyes and my mind.

I was crossing the famous Bridge of Peace in Tbilisi, the capital of Georgia. It’s a pedestrian bridge, designed by Michele De Lucchi, a famous Italian architect. This bridge is characterized by a very geometric structure made of glass and steel, and my concentration was immediately captured by this ceiling. I decided to develop this image in black & white because I wanted to stress the shape of the structure against the sky and to make it look like a net that captures the observer – being or not obsessed by geometries.

0 Facebook Twitter Google + Pinterest
Landscape of Vatican City

Vatican City (Rome, Italy). I guess that this Landscape of Vatican City has been taken millions, maybe even billions of times! I have seen photographs like this so many times, that I was expecting to get bored easily once I was on the top of the Cupola watching the famous Piazza San Pietro. It was not like this; not at all. The only annoying things were all the tourists – like me, of course – that made capturing this image a tough mission, especially finding the (almost) perfect symmetry – my obsession in these situations!

But watching and photographing the landscape of Vatican City was an amazing experience, which I’m sure will repay you from climbing +500 steps to reach the top…

0 Facebook Twitter Google + Pinterest
Fuorisalone 2016 (Milan Design Week) – 50 Manga Chairs by Oky Sato / Nendo at San Simpliciano

Milan (Italy). In these days, Milan seems “the place to be” – and not only for architecture lovers, trendy designers and unmissable hipsters. For sure, like every year around this period, the city attracts an incredible amount of people coming here to discover the latest tendencies in the sectors of furniture, lighting, decoration and home appliances.

I cannot miss the opportunity of keeping my eye (and my camera) on this interesting world of course, and I like to share what I’m seeing here in my photoblog (isn’t it its purposes?). What’s really impressive, for those people living here all the year, is assisting to a true and deep change in the city’s spirit: let me try to better express myself. Although I consider Milan as probably the most living, enjoyable, innovative and “sparkling” city in Italy (for sure, one of the best life quality), during the so called “design week” the “routine” goes through an authentic transformation, which means pulling out a completely new soul made not only of parties, events, vernissage, opening ceremonies and installations (these things are pretty normal – let me say) but made of a sense of general “discovery”. Yes, during the Fuorisalone’s week, Milan’s people (re)discover their city made of hidden courtyards, beautiful buildings (some of them exceptionally open to public), street decorations and so on. In other words, it looks like a sort of “inspirational wave” floods the city’s districts (not only the fashionable Brera or 5 Vie, but also Lambrate, Tortona etc.) to demonstrate that the urban environment can react to the daily routine, and transform the ordinary into something of extraordinary.

Of course there are critics: why it can’t be all the year? Why the next week – once the design events will be over – Milan will return to hide its beauty? I’m not in a position to answer; but as long as I see that this creative magma is still boiling under the city’s asphalt, the enthusiasm’s eruption of the design week is very, very welcome!

The photograph posted here shows the wonderful exhibition of “50 Manga Chairs” by the Japanese – Canadian designer Oky Sato, included in 2006 (when he was only 29 years old) in “The 100 Most Respected Japanese” ranking prepared by Newsweek magazine, winner of innumerable awards and with a long list of collections exposed at the most prestigious museums all around the world (from the MoMA of New York to the Victoria and Albert Museum of London; from the Centre Pompidou of Paris to the Triennale Design Museum of Milan). I loved the concept of this exhibition, which – by the way – is hosted in what I think is one of the most beautiful and prestigious locations of the entire “Fuorisalone 2016”, the cloister at San Simpliciano church, in the heart of Brera district (and for those visiting it, do not miss a walk in this wonderful and old church).

The exhibition includes 50 chairs, each one based on typical Manga comics’ abstract lines and shapes: the idea is perfectly displayed in a video at the end of the exhibition, and I think visitors should start from it to better understand the concept of Oky Sato’s work. Each chair is made of stainless steel, and all of them have the same basic frame (legs and seatback): what it changes and makes each piece something of unique is the “decoration”, representative of an emulation of the movement – as it is described in a manga comic. If the observer remains concentrated on a single chair per time analyzing its decoration, at the end she will perceive – with the chair itself – the emotion given by the represented movement. The result is a collection of 50 objects conceptually very static (such as chairs can be) but emotionally incredibly dynamic. A great contrast – the one between statics and dynamism – that only a great designer, such as Oky Sato, can represent in this masterful way.

0 Facebook Twitter Google + Pinterest
Newer Posts