10 August - 14 October 1997
Born in Milano in 1940, Franco Vimercati has been using photography in a conceptual way for almost 30 years. After his studies at the Academy of Brera, in 1963 he decided to give up painting and devote himself enterely to photography. His first body of work - pubished in the book "Sulle Langhe"(1973) - are essential and sober portraits in which the artist "avoids getting beyond the possibilities of what photography really is" (Paolo Fossati).
During the Seventies his research leads him to ever more radical statements. In 1975 he photographs 36 bottles of "Levissima" mineral water. Substantially identical, the bottles differ only through subtle details. In 1977 he takes pictures of parquet listels and in 1978 he realizes a cycle of six "tondi" of a soup bowl with a twisted paper bag. In the following decade the same soup bowl becomes the one and only object of Vimercati's photographic inquiriy(1983-1992). First photographed in a classical way, on a table with a white background, the images of the bowl evolve through the years, showing the infinite possibilities of photographic expression and meaning by varying only the position, lighting and focus.
In 1995 the artist takes a series of perfectly sharp and concise photographs of different everyday objects (a glass, a bottle, a tin, a coffe-machine) turned upside down, since this is the way the camera sees them.
In 1996 he brings the images of the same objects out of focus: they become pure imprints of light. The photographs are bigger in size, because "they must shine".
After having touched this extreme, in 1997 Vimercati goes back to some highly sharp images. In the show we see their juxtaposition and watch their dialogue.
Vimercati's photographs avoid depicting the ephemeral, in favour of a more lasting strength and intensity.