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A Monthly Culture Matrix For the Cosmopolitan Traveler

Mario Giacomelli: Figure/Ground

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J. Paul Getty Museum / Los Angeles / Art

Senigallia lies on Italy’s Adriatic coast, an hour’s drive from Rimini and far from the wonders of the South. It is poor and remote, an untapped tourist destination. The town was once home to the photojournalist Mario Giacomelli, a self-taught photographer who was born into poverty in 1925. Giacomelli bought his first camera in 1953, when he was 28. He sported it around the town’s cobbled roads, taking candid photographs of people going about their daily lives. Inspired by the Neo-Realist films of de Sica and Rossellini, and also by Italian literature—Pavese, Leopardi, Montale—Giacomelli was a humanist. He paid intense attention to the deep contrasts, the soot blacks and floating whites, in his photographs. The Getty presents a range of his work, a vision poetically and powerfully his own. —E.C.

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J. Paul Getty Museum 17985 Pacific Coast Hwy, Pacific Palisades, CA 90272, USA
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