Through 52 images from the full range of his work, an essay on Olivo Barbieri’s entire oeuvre reveals the multifaceted contours of an unusual Italy. Olivo Barbieri is an Italian photographer recognized for his innovative miniature still photographs created from actual landscapes by simulating shallow depth of field.
“I once asked Luigi Ghirri what he was looking for and he immediately replied, 'the truth'. I, on the other hand, have sought to represent the invisible; could truth and the invisible be the same thing?”
This question posed by Olivo Barbieri contains the entire sense of Reversing (of viewpoint, of the ordinary way of seeing and dealing with the real) and Revealing (of different stances one may take before the world) that translate truth into virtuality. Or into impossibility. With fifty-two images created from 1982 to 2009, Viaggi in Italia embraces nearly the artist's entire oeuvre, not so much in the spirit of a retrospective but with all the flavor of an essay.
This is a photography of places, of architectures, of urban and natural landscapes, of individuals and populations. Within it we see the modus vivendi, styles and tendencies, affiliations and de-localizations. This is not photography as reportage, but rather the type of creative voyage that conjoins visual beauty with a unique poetics, capable of following a connecting expressive thread through each image, whichever corner of the Earth it is from.
Olivo Barbieri is an Italian artist and photographer of urban environments. He is recognized for his innovative technique creating miniature still photography from actual landscapes by simulating shallow depth of field Barbieri has exhibited his work at the Venice Biennale (1993, 1995, 1997), among other international exhibitions, and in galleries and museums throughout Europe, North America, and China.Sabrina Zannier is a curator.