Olivo Barbieri

Italian, b. 1954

1.1k followers

Olivo Barbieri

Bio

Italian, b. 1954

Followers
1.1k
Biography

With his lush, large-format photographs that walk the line between the real and the surreal, Olivo Barbieri challenges perception and confounds expectations. In his teasing, humorous work, the real becomes fake and the fake becomes real. As he describes: “All my work is about perception. It’s a deconstruction of the normal way of seeing.” His “Site Specific” series (2003-) exemplifies the way in which he uses his camera to make the familiar seem strange. Hovering in a helicopter above major world cities, Barbieri takes photographs from a bird’s-eye view, selectively focusing on only one element in the frame, often an iconic architectural monument, while leaving its surroundings blurred. The effect is both stunningly beautiful and bizarre: paradoxically grand and miniaturized, familiar cityscapes become shrunken toy landscapes with dollhouse buildings and miniscule inhabitants.

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Career Highlights
Learn more about artist insights.
Established
Established representation
Represented by industry leading galleries.
Group
Group show at a major institution
San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA), and 3 more
Institution
Collected by a major institution
Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
Fair
Included in a major biennial
Venice Biennale National Pavilion, and 2 more
Biography

With his lush, large-format photographs that walk the line between the real and the surreal, Olivo Barbieri challenges perception and confounds expectations. In his teasing, humorous work, the real becomes fake and the fake becomes real. As he describes: “All my work is about perception. It’s a deconstruction of the normal way of seeing.” His “Site Specific” series (2003-) exemplifies the way in which he uses his camera to make the familiar seem strange. Hovering in a helicopter above major world cities, Barbieri takes photographs from a bird’s-eye view, selectively focusing on only one element in the frame, often an iconic architectural monument, while leaving its surroundings blurred. The effect is both stunningly beautiful and bizarre: paradoxically grand and miniaturized, familiar cityscapes become shrunken toy landscapes with dollhouse buildings and miniscule inhabitants.

Career Highlights
Learn more about artist insights.
Established
Established representation
Represented by industry leading galleries.
Group
Group show at a major institution
San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA), and 3 more
Institution
Collected by a major institution
Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
Fair
Included in a major biennial
Venice Biennale National Pavilion, and 2 more
Articles Featuring Olivo Barbieri
The Real-Fake Photographs of Olivo Barbieri
Jul 20th, 2015
The Real-Fake Photographs of Olivo Barbieri
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