Baryta pigment prints

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ELV (Norwegian for River) explores Massimo Leardini’s fascination with the body and the landscape. Presenting a series of transcendental images of contorted fragments of the female body, set deep within in the primordial forests of Scandinavia. The map that Leardini unfolds is not built, but behaves like a puzzle in the imagination. The photographs were taken between 2014 and 2019, always during the summer period, when the Scandinavian light prolongs the shadows due to the obliqueness with which the sun reaches this part of the world in an almost tangent way. This causes the light to draw the silhouettes of your subjects on the background with a high but delicate contrast. Massimo works with a fixed lens and without tripod, the closeness or distance of his images are the result of the movement of his own body. It crosses the landscape and creates different approaches to what it frames, weaving a relationship with the surrounding environment. The surprise of the forms –both the skin and the bark– arises from the fascination of looking strangely. This modus operandi has crossed the history of photography thanks to pioneering works such as that of Edward Weston, his gaze has permeated subsequent generations displacing the importance of the subject / object and focusing on how to approach what is photographed. How we always look above what we look at. To the question of how a naked body looks, Leardini gives an answer using delicacy. A delicacy that looks through the sculptural tradition of his native Italy and from which we recognize the elegance of his return.

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