The heritage group “Associazione Porcinai” asked me to do a small exhibition and talk about my photography of Porcinai’s gardens during their general assembly in December. I am very pleased as it will take place in the studio of Pietro Porcinai in Fiesole, near Florence, and the audience will be specialists of his work, his daughters, people who have worked with him, garden architects and historians… As the exhibition space is quite small, I will be able to show only 10 to 12 prints size 42X60cm (23X60″). Making a very tight editing is very difficult. I want to choose pictures I am pleased with as a photographer and which show Porcinai’s gardens special character and the subtle colors and lightness of trees and plants he was often using. Here are three images of a garden near lake Como that I put in my first selection. I might keep one or two at the end…

 

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I keep documenting the work of 20th century Italian garden architect Pietro Porcinai and went to the memorial he designed in memory of the President of the Italian energy group ENI, Enrico Mattei.  A simple stone displays the names of the three people who died in the plane crash on October 27, 1962. Three oaks, a field bordered with huge trees turning red every year in October and a path that goes all around to walk and think about the ones who died. Located in the middle of fields, on the site where the debris of the plane were found, the memorial, like a big screen of trees when seen from the distance, appeared to me as a place of reflection.

A ‘still life’ painting is called ‘nature morte’ in French and “natura morta” in Italian, which means ‘dead nature’. When English look at a frozen moment of life, French and Italians see death at work…

My wife brought me back more autumn fruits from the market, pears and pomegranates. After several years in Italy, I am getting influenced by Italian masters and one of the things I like the most, is how they captured light on their paintings. Would it be possible to get  the same kind of  light with photography ? Not an easy thing to do…

Autumn fruits

November 6, 2011

Agathe, my wife, likes fruits. It might be because one of her ancestors, Charles Baltet, created in the XIXth century many varieties of pears and apples, including the Pear of Dr Jules Guyot, better known as the Poire Guyot, and the apples Cramoisie de Croncels and Virginie Baltet. He is also the author of the ‘Grafting and budding’ book.

My wife buys all kind of fruits on the market. She came back a couple days ago with a beautiful quince. She also likes to leave fruits on a table until they change color and decay. I took the ones I found at home today to take a picture.