From a conceptual and philosophical point of view, in [Massimo’s] photos you can clearly perceive multitudes of solitudes, empty spaces filled by our theatrical relationships with others, with strangers with whom we share the same square meter without feeling closer emotionally. A bit like in our apartments which, not surprisingly, set us apart. The houses of life.

Massimo Vitali aesthetically draws on the history of art and never only on that of photography. Giotto and his crowds inspire the contemporary artist as a sort of reference to our history, made of images and works of art rather than words and chronicles, where each of us should and could rediscover the meaning of his own existence, explore its secrets and improve one’s relational experience, not only with others but above all with the inner world that enters into communication with the physical one in a metaphysical game which is both revealing and enigmatic at the same time.

In Vitali’s photos there are never details identifiable with historical or current events but rather metaphorical frames of life lived together with millions of people, with their moments of leisure, from beaches to discos, almost ignoring the need for aggregation that pushes us towards those places as unconscious sensory fulfilment. For this reason, this kind of photography is art; because it explains to the only real informing body we have, the unconscious, what we really need. And it does so with the reasons and practices of art, the visual poetry that lets elements of vital value emerge. Indeed, Vitali.

The visit to Forte Belvedere and to Massimo Vitali’s exhibition brings to light a fundamental truth: one cannot celebrate the glories of the past without understanding its content. Monuments cannot be treated as postcards for tourists. Those architectural structures which arise from art conceal meanings and signifiers that reveal the expressive urgency of the Man of all time.

Looking at the photos on display while out of the corner of the eye, from the windows of the Fort, you can also see Giotto’s bell tower or Brunelleschi’s dome, helps the perception to activate the eighth sense: that of the immortal and infinite understanding of what lives inside us and that the artists are able to exhibit in an esoteric and erotic way. Not surprisingly, for us it is the eighth sense: 8 is the number of infinity.

Our art cities, their treasures, are imaginative narratives of aesthetic values ​​that have generated the intelligences and evolutions we enjoy today. The Made in Italy of harmony, the craftsmanship of vision, what the world has always asked of us because we have always been the best interpreters of the worlds and the ways to discover.

Vision is a perceptual heritage that is worth much more than mere sight. The relationship between the windows of the Fort and Massimo’s photographs generates a visual limit which, again to quote Ugo Morelli, reveals to our minds our real possibilities, the world in its best form, the aesthetic and non-cosmetic one, the world of the opportunities for fullness. The retina is not enough; to truly understand, to take it with you, you need the Third Eye, the pineal gland, otherwise it is only empty suggestion. Do not fall into the retina…

Francesco Cascino, "Massimo Vitali. Dalla vista alla visione" in Art a part of culture, October 1, 2021.