29 ARTS IN PROGRESS gallery at PHOTO BASEL 2019
11 – 16 JUNE 2019
STAND NR. 8 – MAINHALL/FESTSAAL
GIAN PAOLO BARBIERI | GREG GORMAN | GIUSEPPE MASTROMATTEO
29 ARTS IN PROGRESS gallery is pleased to participate in Photo Basel 2019 exhibiting a selection of works by gallery artists including Gian Paolo Barbieri, Greg Gorman and Giuseppe Mastromatteo.
Photo Basel 2019 will take place from 11 to 16 June with an invitation- only preview on Monday, June 10th from 6 pm at Volkshaus Basel, Rebgasse 12-14, Basel.
One of the highlights of our presentation for the V edition of Photo Basel is a selection of unseen unique vintage photographs by Gian Paolo Barbieri tracing the evolution of fashion photography and style over four decades from the early Sixties on.
According to Barbieri, 2018 recipient of the distinguished Lucie Award for Outstanding Achievement in Fashion, fashion photography has to reflect a scene, a performance, theatre, as close to reality as it might be. Standing right at the center of that scene is a woman, often animated by a playful, irreverent irony. It’s Barbieri’s woman – as seen through an anthology of female charm, which features such great models and actresses as Audrey Hepburn, Marpessa Hennink and Monica Bellucci.
At Photo Basel 2019, we are also featuring some of the most sought-after works by Greg Gorman, the American master of the modern portrait, and Giuseppe Mastromatteo, one of the most original contemporary photographers exploring the nature of identity between essence and perception.
GIAN PAOLO BARBIERI - RARE VINTAGE FASHION PHOTOGRAPHS TRACING THE SECOND HALF OF THE 20TH CENTURY
On display a selection of rare and unique vintage gelatin silver prints from 1969 to 2000 on show for the first time, embodying the evolution of fashion photography and style over four decades, along withunseen Polaroid photographs that depict the world of fashion and its protagonists, an exciting and insightful behind-the-scenes work.
According to Barbieri, fashion photography has to reflect a scene, a performance, theatre, as close to reality as it might be. It has to channel beauty, metaphor, reality. Standing right at the centre of that scene is a woman, often animated by a playful, irreverent irony. A woman who is able to convey an upsetting deal of ambiguity and mystery, which on the other hand spare her a miserable reduction to object.
Pictured as she is, this woman is no myth. It’s a “real” picture and reflects Barbieri’s own great belief: women’s real essence is a secret, strongly aiming to remain secret.
This view explains Barbieri’s admiration for women’s everlasting yet ever-changing beauty, but also his awareness of how rich and full of infinite metamorphosis the female personality is.
Barbieri’s shots are stunning and magic, dreamlike and playful, ironic and theatrical. Seducing shots. The plain surface of the picture turns into a “seducing object”, an exciting invitation to imagine and fantasise. A whole territory full of mysteries, ready for the eye to explore, and discover.
GREG GORMAN - THE AMERICAN MASTER OF THE MODERN PORTRAIT
Greg Gorman, one of the most highly acclaimed photographers on the international stage, presents at our stand his unique photographs, stylistically unmistakable for their isolation of the subject from their external surroundings and backdrop. Each image is a careful study, starting from the subject’s body language to the articulation of the muscular form, from the shade to the angle of the shot, from the positioning of the lights to the creation of shadows.
Indeed shadows play a pivotal role in his portraits because they represent the area of space that lies out of reach of the spectator, stimulating within him or her the curiosity and desire to discover more. His are photographic works of great importance that represent the dominant characteristics of his entire work.
He, in fact, manages to create a complicity with the subject depicted, establishing a relationship of mutual trust that, especially in the case of Hollywood celebrities, exposes the actor, frees him from the cage of the character, from the duty of embodying another character. The subject is quite simply himself and, in this way, humanized. Gorman enriches his gamut of faces with many studies of the human figure, and thus, with a variety of body language.
GIUSEPPE MASTROMATTEO - EXPLORING THE NATURE OF IDENTITY BETWEEN ESSENCE AND PERCEPTION
On display iconic photographs from his most famous series “Indepensense”. Mastromatteo focuses his investigation on the body and in particular faces, exploring the concept of perfection in relation to the unstable and ephemeral nature of man. Adopting an almost philological approach to digital technologies, manipulating and subtracting, he plays with these paradoxes so that the images disappear, creating firstly an effect of estrangement followed by recognition and identification between the subject of the image, the photographer and the audience. Mastromatteo’s portraits bring poetic Surrealism back to life and reproduce humanity in impossible and illusory dimensions. Ripped faces, eyes and ears which run through hands, are the center of an imaginary truth that draws inspiration from the visions of Magritte and Man Ray to land inside a new visual synthesis with stylistic patterns representing the most contemporary photography of our time, in a continuous overlapping of visual languages that live in the world of advertising and genuine research.
Backgrounds are white, the light homogeneous: nothing averts the detailed expressions in the characters of this silent and fascinating theatre of the absurd. No expression exists in these faces, there is no tension, but rather a sense of timelessness that leaves us open to reflect about the uncertainty of this third millennium. Reality and fiction appear as outdated ideas: photography in itself seems not enough and becomes something more, transforming into a metaphor of itself.
On display unconventional celebrity portraits (like a stunning Bette Davis) with classical nudes, photographs which reveal their purist essence through a use of stark lighting, stripped back interiors and black and white color palette. Stripping away affectation and artifice and inviting the subject to express
ABOUT 29 ARTS IN PROGRESS GALLERY
29 ARTS IN PROGRESS is a leading art photography gallery located in the historic area of Sant’Ambrogio, Milan. The gallery represents the work of internationally renowned photographers and organises between five and six exhibitions a year. Alongside contemporary and modern masters, the gallery represents a select group of emerging photographers. Its annual exhibition Unpublished Photo searches for talented as yet undiscovered artists. Since its inception, the gallery has curated exhibitions in partnership with public and private museums including: Multimedia Art Museum, Moscow; Erarta Museum of Contemporary Art, Saint Petersburg; Palazzo Reale and La Triennale, Milan.
GIAN PAOLO BARBIERI (B. MILANO, 1938)
Gian Paolo Barbieri was born in 1938 in via Mazzini, in the very center of Milan, to a family of fabric wholesalers. It was in his father’s fabric warehouse that he learned the skills that were to be so invaluable to him in his career as a fashion photographer. He quickly moves his first steps in the theatrical field becoming an actor, operator and costume designer. American noir cinema constitutes an important foundation for him, trying to figure out how the actresses could turn out to be so beautiful with the use of unique lightings making them look even more enchanting. Movies gave him the sense of movement and the chance of carrying the Italian fashion from a footboard with a white backdrop, to the outdoors, giving it a different soul.
Seizing a chance to go to Rome at the height of the Dolce Vita, he earned his keep by photographing up-and-coming starlets, but not for long before he then moved to Paris, where he met the Harper’s Bazaar photographer Tom Kublin, whose assistant he became for a short but intense period.
In 1964, he opened his own studio in Milan and started working in fashion, making sample books and succeeding in getting his photography work published in Novità, the magazine that subsequently became Vogue Italia in 1966.
From that time on, he started working with the publisher Condé Nast, with his work also featuring in Vogue Paris, Vogue America and Vogue Germany.
In 1968, he won the Biancamano Award for best Italian photographer, while the German weekly magazine Stern included him in its listing of the world’s fourteen best international fashion photographers.
In the meantime, he also started working on advertising campaigns for such major brands as Yves Saint Laurent, Chanel, Dolce & Gabbana, Mikimoto and many others, managing to transform what he portrayed into ideal images, with continuous references to the silver screen of the thirties and forties.
Celebrities of the scene such as Diana Vreeland, Yves Saint Laurent and Richard Avedon, belong as part of his important history but also collaborating with iconic actresses of all time from Audrey Hepburn to Veruschka and Jerry Hall.
A fundamental milestone in his career came from his experience with Vogue Italia and the great Italian fashion designers, including Valentino, Versace, Ferrè and Armani, whose creations he interpreted in the eighties, years when Italian prêt-à-porter and Made in Italy set out and conquered the world.
The work of Gian Paolo Barbieri has been displayed in major international museums worldwide, including: the Victoria & Albert Museum and the National Portrait Gallery of London, the Kunstforum of Wien, the MAMM in Moscow and the Erarta Museum in St.Petersburg, Palazzo Reale in Milan and the Musée du Quai Branly of Paris; his photographs are part of many public and private collections, including The Nicola Erni Collection in Switzerland.
Gian Paolo Barbieri is the 2018 recipient of the distinguished Lucie Award for Outstanding Achievement in Fashion.
GREG GORMAN (B. KANSAS CITY, 1949)
Greg Gorman was born in Kansas City, Missouri in 1949. For over four decades, Greg Gorman has continued to master the art of photography. From celebrity portraits and advertising campaigns to magazine layouts and fine art work, Greg has developed and showcased a discriminating and unique style in his profession. Greg’s work documents that peculiar obsession of the 21st century celebrity. His photography is timeless and not confined to has-beens, hot properties, and wannabes. Each shot gives a picture of human nature in its infinite range. Each picture is also a testament to the individual character. “For me photographs is most successful when it doesn’t answer all the questions,” says Gorman, “but leaves something to the imagination.”
In 1985, through the advice of illustrator Antonio Lopez, Gorman realized that he needed a creative outlet in addition to the commercial work that launched his career. He then began to expand his personal work exploring the human form and became a notable photographer for not only his celebrity portraiture but also his figure studies of the male and female nude. While continually expanding his archive with new work, Gorman works on compilations of his imagery for publication. A book of his photos for the award winning L.A. Eyeworks campaign, entitled Framed was released in 2012. In the fall of 2009, Damiani Editore released In Their Youth: Early Portraits, which incorporates forty years of unpublished work. These join Gorman’s previously published books Greg Gorman Volume I, Greg Gorman Volume II, Inside Life, Perspectives, As I See It, Just Between Us and a book of platinum
prints entitled Odes to Pindar, published by The Journal of the 21st Century.
Over the past 30 years, Greg Gorman’s work has been exhibited in galleries and museums throughout the world, including a recent vernissage at the Helmut Newton Museum in Berlin. When not shooting famous faces, Greg travels for specialized photographic projects and is one of the most sought-after speakers in the photographic community. As well, Greg shares his expertise in hands-on photography workshops worldwide, most notably his personal workshops at his studio in Northern California.
Greg Gorman has been recognized for his contribution to the world of photography with the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Professional Photographer’s of America, the Achievement in Portraiture Award from The Lucie Foundation and the Pacific Design Center Stars of Design award. Greg has also been acknowledged for his charitable works for The Elton John Aids Foundation, Aids Healthcare Foundation, Focus on Aids, The Oscar De La Hoya Foundation, Vox/Out Voices of Style + Design, PETA, Angel Art, and Paws LA.
Born in 1949 in Kansas City, Missouri, Greg attended the University of Kansas from 1967- 69 with a major in photojournalism. He completed his studies at the University of Southern California, graduating with a Master of Fine Arts degree in cinematography in 1972. Greg’s
latest career venture has been in the world of winemaking.
He currently divides his time between Los Angeles and Mendocino, California.
GIUSEPPE MASTROMATTEO (B. MILANO, 1970)
Giuseppe Mastromatteo has worked as an artist for fifteen years. After working in the record industry as a sound technician and musician, he is drawn to the art world choosing photography as his creative medium of choice choosing to study and specialize in Art Direction at the Academy of Communication in Milan. Since 2005 his work has received significant critical attention and has been published in many art books and magazines. His work has been shown in art galleries, museums and industry / art festivals including in Milan, Paris, London, Miami, Peking, Basel, Istanbul and New York, where Mastromatteo lived for three years. In 2006 he collaborated with the Triennale di Milano in the role of Art Director to launch the Triennale of Bovisa whilst also working on other contemporary art exhibitions. Currently he holds the position of Chief Creative Officer for the leading advertising agency Ogilvy Italy whilst simultaneously pursuing on his own artistic projects working between Milan and New York. He writes about art and teaches in leading higher education institutions in the field.
Mastromatteo focuses his investigation on the body and in particular faces, exploring the concept of perfection in relation to the unstable and ephemeral nature of man. Adopting an almost philological approach to digital technologies, manipulating and subtracting, he plays with these paradoxes so that the images disappear, creating firstly an effect of estrangement followed by recognition and identification between the subject of the image, the photographer and the audience.
HUMANSCAPE is Mastromatteo’s new artist monograph, published in 2018.