Reshaping the World

Vitali’s scenes are at far less of a remove, hierarchically or psychically, from the demos. As viewers, we are amongst their number, sharing space, in spite of our elevated vantage, as if we have just come upon the scene. I find myself looking for bodies resembling my own or those of lovers or friends, and this inclusiveness of the viewer as a part of the crowd gives the work a surprisingly egalitarian ethos.

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Lucas Blalock

Jours de Fête

So, what draws us to his work which is really like no other: the sweeping panoramas he chronicles perched en haut like a stork, the kind of sublime anonomity and "everyman'ness" of what he captures or our own nostalgia at these temporal but restful "jours de fête"? 

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John Armbruster

Puppeteer from the Past

It is almost thirty years since Vitali abandoned conventional reportage. His back catalogue remains locked away and he hides the key. However occasional glimpses are beginning to emerge of a remarkable early chapter in his career that maps a cataclysmic period in Italy’s modern history. What makes the work so poignant is the contrast with his later work in which he takes back control of the photographic concept to emerge less as the journalistic puppet and more as the consummate puppeteer.

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Roger Hargreaves

Giacometti on the Beach

Massimo Vitali’s most recent images are concerned with refugees. – People who find themselves on mediterranean beaches for reasons very different from the ones that lead the holiday makers from northern European cities there.

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Tobia Bezzola