Massimo: Where are you? New York? Milan? Vancouver?

Valerio: I’m on the Cathay Pacific website. Where are you?

M: In Göttingen. I’m printing the third volume of my work, from 2010 through 2018. I need to write something for the book, a few sentences, I was hoping we could discuss it.

V: Go ahead and send me the pdf of the book.

M: I’ll have them send it right now.

The pdf file arrives in my inbox immediately. It’s exceptional. All of it is exceptional. And then there are 3 or 4 photographs that take my breath away – they make me want to stop taking them, photographs. The one with a girl wishing her hair under the stream of water flowing out of an industrial pipe, it could be a sewage pipe for all I know. The one of the rocks with a wave breaking over them, without any trace of human presence. The first one, with that hug, her arms draped around his neck but his arms down. The optimists among us hope his hands are touching her legs, the pessimists no.

I call him back. Massimo, there’s nothing to write about these photographs. A curator can’t write anything, I can’t write anything, and maybe you can write just a single sentence. If I were you, I would write a single sentence.

All of the work is about the human race and about the space often unexpectedly inhabited by humans, or at least occupied by them. They are shapes, contrails, like in the case of the dunes, they are rocks, often architecture. I can see everything but beaches, why is it that they always associate your work with beaches? And above all, though I have had the chance to watch you at work many times, I have yet to understand if you are the fixed rock occupied by the human figure, or the human figure occupying the rock. Probably you’re both. And so what could I possibly write, you being both.
If I were you, and unfortunately I’m not, I would write a single sentence:

I leave my house, I go to the chosen spot, I sit and I watch/observe/look.

Valerio Spada in Entering a New World, STEIDL, 2019.