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Francesco Merlini at “Atlanti, Ritratti e altre storie” exhibition in Reggio Emilia

October 13, 2020

On Friday October 16th opens in Reggio Emilia at Palazzo del Mosto the exhibition “Atlanti, Ritratti e altre Storie” that will be on display till January 10th 2021.

The exhibition brings together the personal exhibitions of the three winners of the open call launched by Fotografia Europea 2020, joined by three other projects selected by the jury composed of Walter Guadagnini – artistic director of the Festival, Maria Pia Bernardoni – curator of international projects of the LagosPhoto festival and Oliva Maria Rubio – independent curator.

One next to the other, inside the rooms of Palazzo da Mosto, the intimate and personal stories of Alexia Fiasco, Alessandra Baldoni, Manon Lanjouère, Francesco Merlini, Giaime Meloni and Denisse Ariana Pérez follow one another. The paths are intertwined with unconscious references characterized by the particular visions of the individual authors.

For many years Francesco has tried to portray a valley where he was born and where he spent a lot of time since childhood, although he grew up in a big city like Milan. At a certain point he puts aside any kind of documentary approach with the awareness that he has never been interested in the beauty of the natural landscape, but in giving voice to a place that changes, protects and destroys people, through its existence in our lives.

In Merlini’s work the memories of the time spent in the valley are mixed with dreams, nightmares and visions that his mind has set in this familiar and at the same time distant place, drawing on a sort of magical realism.

In a time when people look at photographs faster and faster, I decided to use a photographic language that would induce the viewer to linger, approach and squint to get used to the darkness of these iridescent images that reveal a personal journey towards the showdown with this valley.

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