"METROPOLIS" BY RENATO D'AGOSTIN
"METROPOLIS" BY RENATO D'AGOSTIN
"Metropolis" by Renato D'Agostin
Rare signed copy
From the preface by Ralph Gibson
Renato D’Agostin is at this moment positioned somewhere between the light and the event that is being photographed. This is what is known as inspiration. His Leica is ready to caress his eye and we are the fortunate viewers of this process. Since first seeing this early work of a young and talented photographer I have believed that the future would indeed bring him many important images. How he is living this promise is seen in the work on these pages. The images contain his place in the world as he has found it. A world of a young artist who is determined to continue to move forward into a future of beautiful images. Thus the world itself will become more beautiful as a result of his efforts. At this period in his life every image is possible, every nuance of photography can be discovered and every desire can be pursued on film. Which is very important because these days film is becoming even more of an alchemical mystery as lesser forms of image making become more and more imbedded into society.
Renato D’Agostin is a young photographer with a future. The future of photography is in the eyes of young photographers like him who leap every morning out of bed and head directly into the light of day.
From the text by Renato Miracco
The city as a place in which we live, work and love looses its physical dimension and becomes a place of pure emotion. Its buildings and streets become paths of reason and emotion similar and/or different wherever we happen to be.
The images in the photograph are only signs, the warmth of emotions left on the ground or, in the words of James Hillman, the soul of places.
In fact, a careful reader will immediately realise that the city, the places shot by the photographer, belong to completely different yet identical realities, because they are places that shimmer with feeling.
In his photographs, Renato portrays a place in which the mind searches for what we normally call the scraps of the soul and immediately transfers them into an oneiric dimension.
The photographer participates and is intimately involved in the metahistorical development of the story: a series of images and tales that are not real but images of what we have called a parallel reality. This reality escapes our daily considerations to become the ecstatic revelation that some philosophers would call the vision of our third eye.
The environment is full of soul and inextricably part of who we are because our surroundings nurture our soul insofar as they feed our imagination. A photographer will always try to recreate both an architectural and emotional space.
Photography as a narrative medium has gone through different phases, but as an art historian I believe that it is currently shedding its image as a provider of images; it is gradually returning to its role as the teller of oneiric tales, as it did during the Dadaist period, as well as becoming emotionally more important in our lives.
Its strength lies in not using an objective event to express emotion, but using the emotion created by the event to explore and discover its objective traits.
New forms or, better still, new images are based on reality, but contain a kernel of memory, something that is above all spiritually alive and present: so sometimes our soul soars to new heights when touched by the charisma of brilliance: wonder, thauma, prerogative of the gods, the emotional ecstasy of man.
At first, proof of what is visible, invisible, glimpsed or just perceived startles us, then it makes us think and sometimes scares us; it “troubles” or “surprises” us depending on our state of mind.
But we have to realise that THE WORLD AROUND US is only one of the probable, intelligible worlds that our mind can understand; in actual fact, there are many more. We perceive them but refuse to bring them to light.
In this, Renato helps us; he shows us the way, his approach, his way of making sense of what we have rejected as “troublesome”, “surprising” or “boring”.
His work combines two approaches: the first is the purely geometric or architectural approach described earlier, while the second involves “the illusion of fixity,” of what is predefined and which, at the very moment in which it becomes real, looses its ephemeral form.
Photographs by Renato D'Agostin
Text by Ralph Gibson and Renato Miracco
Published for the exhibition "Metropolis" at the Leica Gallery New York, 2007
Edition of 1000 copies