If art is more visible, it becomes more democratic. To materially 'open' a window on contemporary art so that more and more people can enjoy it, is a gesture that makes art, usually locked away in museums and exclusive exhibition spaces, more usable. Adec Arte has done this, opening not just a 'window', but three 'shop windows' overlooking Via Edmondo De Amicis at number 28 that, until 30 August, promote art and beauty for the benefit of all.
An inclusive open-air museum
With the exhibition Sagome fluttuanti by the Israeli photographer Michael Ackerman, the project of "bringing art to the street" an inclusive open-air museum, visible 24 hours a day, gets underway. The shop window becomes not only a physical space, but a cultural one, a theatre available to those who want to see, where artists build an existential niche, a fundamental condition of their creativity, to build a common home with the spectator on the street. Curated by Davide Di Maggio, in collaboration with Claudio Composti / mc2gallery, the exhibition is an opportunity to meet one of the most interesting artists in international photography through a selection of some of his most significant recent photographs.
Between fiction and hallucination
In Michael Ackerman's work, documentary and autobiography combine with fiction, and everything dissolves into hallucination. His photography has always been criss-crossed with ordinary and extraordinary themes: time and timelessness, personal history and the history of places rendered through deteriorated and damaged images, not as a stylistic choice but as an analogical reference to experience, which is never pristine. His travels embrace New York, Havana, Berlin, Naples, Paris, Warsaw and Krakow, but the places are not necessarily recognisable.
Reflections on life, doubts and anxieties
Born in Tel Aviv in 1967, he emigrated to New York in 1974. Between 1993 and 1997 he travelled frequently to India and his reportages from the great Asian country were the subject of his first book End Time City (Delpire, 1999), which won the Prix Nadar in 1999. In 1997, he joined the Agence and Galerie VU' in Paris, with which he worked for about twenty years. Michael Ackerman seeks and finds in the world he passes through, reflections of his personal life, his doubts and anxieties. In 1998 he was awarded the Infinity Award for Young Photographer by the International Center of Photography in New York. Since then he has exhibited in numerous cities in both Europe and the United States. His photographs are part of important collections internationally. His latest book Half Life was published in 2010 by Robert Delpire and is Michael Ackerman's third work. In recent years, he has held workshops and masterclasses at the ICP in New York, the Neue Schule Fur Fotografie in Berlin and other schools and institutions around the world.
Confidence in beauty
In his photographs, Ackerman erases geographical and other distinctions to move away from the restrictions of the traditional documentary method. If his work appears harsh at first glance, the landscapes bring back a balanced delicacy, a trust in beauty. The artist has a deep interest in the archaic snow-covered trains that criss-cross Europe. On these trains, today, one travels hundreds of kilometres, but during the journey one is nowhere to be found and, in winter, one floats in the midst of the whiteness, which inevitably contrasts with and reminds one of the terrible goods trains of the Nazi deportations, with their plumbed wagons. The same whiteness but a very different perception. White, strongly vignetted, and black characterise all his work, creating muffled, almost foggy atmospheres where the figures appear unreal in the reality that surrounds them.
In recent years, Ackerman has explored the concrete changes and dreamy dimensions of his own close family, wife and daughter. Intimate, bold images that echo with sincerity, warmth, simple eroticism and love. Contrast this with the harsh, disturbing visions of photographs of soldiers marching into the unknown, of a bombed-out house, of male figures taking showers, bringing to mind prisoners in concentration camps. Or of an elderly waiter who elegantly wanders lost in a deserted city, and the series of portraits (which will be on display in the exhibition) of men who represent evidence of contemporary malaise, contorted into grimaces of pain or with gazes lost in nothingness. Images that narrate the fatigue of living, the restlessness of difficult times and the fear of living them. Fear is mixed with audacity, joy involves trepidation, innocence is real, intricate and fleeting. However, at the end of the journey, the feeling is one of harmony and reflection. Ackerman confronts raw reality and photographs it without filters, without lies.