“There are things I do not like in this world. I could be ironic, but I’m very careful not to be.”
Guido Guidi Veramente
Two dogs snoozing away on a greyish dust road. Fenced in horses next to high piles of wooden pallets. Or a man reading a newspaper in a café. Banal situations which at first glimpse don’t offer much to take a photograph of. Not so for Italian photographer Guido Guidi.
As the recently published retrospective of his 40-year-career titled “Veramente” shows, Guido Guidi broke with the rules of what had generally been considered “photographable” up to the 1960’s.
As Marta Dahó writes in her accompanying words of the book:
“The concept of the landscape gradually mutated, veering towards a new focus on spaces and territories that had previously been deemed undefined or marginal, rather than more canonical sites.”
“Silent witnesses of a landscape undergoing profound changes.”
The dominant subject matter throughout Guido Guidi’s work is territorial transformation. Born near the city of Cesena in the northern part of Italy in 1941, Guidi has dedicated a great part of his oeuvre to documenting the changes in that area.
His images are silent witnesses of a landscape undergoing profound changes: Once an agricultural area on the edge of a suburb and now traversed by a highway.
The artist himself once referred to his photographs as “ugly”. But he doesn’t care.
His approach to photography is a reflection of his character. Unpretentious and observant.
Agnès Sire puts it like this in her afterword to “Veramente”:
“What he looks at is the everyday life around him, but one which is being transformed, regardless of where he is.”
Guido Guidi’s images don’t offer explanations. He shows reality. A reality formed and shaped by changes either so subtle that most are people not even aware of them. Or they don’t wish to pay attention to them thus avoiding to think about the consequences of what little changes – seemingly insignificant when looked at individually – might add up to in the long run.
Guidi’s photographs are sober and stripped down to the core reminders of “what’s there” or “what’s real” – veramente.
More information about Guido Guidi “Veramente”
“Veramente” by Guido Guidi (2014): Published by MACK with an essay by Marta Dahó and an afterword by Agnès Sire.