Nine photographers respond to Italian economic miracle in group show at Stills

By Mark Sheerin | 10 May 2012
Colour photo of three coloured buildings by the sea
Franco Fontana, Paesaggio urbano, Lido delle Nazioni 1973 (1990)© Franco Fontana
Exhibition: La Nostra Terra – Italian Photography from 1970s to today, Stills, Edinburgh, until July 22 2012

To say Italy came out of the Second World War fighting is not being especially glib. Since from 1950 to 1963 there was such industrial growth, the period is known as Italy’s economic miracle. How far ago must that seem to a nation teetering on the brink of the Eurocrisis.

So the current show at Stills has strange timing. It offers nine visions of Italy in the years following the so-called miracle. And a glance at work by the nine photographers involved suggests a taste for gloss and polish, whatever the subject.

But given that there are only 27 photos in the show, Stills will have been able to pick and choose their viewpoint. Selecting just three shots by each of the miracle documenters cannot have been easy. But as the pictorial taster (below) suggests, the gallery has risen to the challenge.

Franco Fontana, Guido Guidi, Luigi Ghirri, Gabriele Basilico, Walter Niedermayr, Olivo Barbieri, Paola De Pietri, Luca Andreoni and Francesco Jodice are the names with which to conjure. Although the youngest, Jodice, born in 1967, missed the miracle by four years.
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More pictures:


Black and white photo of an apartment block and courtyard by night
Gabriele Basilico, Milano 1989 (2006) © Gabriele Basilico
Colour photo of the interior of a road tunnel
Luca Andreoni, Tunnel 174 (2005-2006)© Luca Andreoni
Colour photo of the grounds of Versailles
Luigi Ghirri, Versailles (1985). From the series "Versailles"© Luigi Ghirri
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