Gabriele Zago’s photography is a journey to faraway places

Gabriele Zago’s photography is a journey to faraway places

Giulia Guido · 3 years ago · Photography

We are not alone and we are not all the same. We often use to forget that there are communities and places that have survived the disruptive force of globalization, which unifies and flattens every aspect of society.
Gabriele Zago is an Italian photographer who has focused his work on research and documentation of ethnic groups, territories and populations that, although threatened by what we call progress, manage to preserve traditions, customs and values.

What Gabriele offers us is a journey into distant territories that, among glances that tell a thousand stories, has the objective of making us know what happens in the world and make us discover realities far from our own and therefore of immense value.

Gabriele Zago’s photography is both discovery and testimony, thanks to which we are transported among African tribes, or even to Papua New Guinea where he realized his latest project entitled “Colors still remain“.

You can see the shots of this project live from November 27th in Turin, where Gabriele will exhibit for Ph.ocus – About photography in the “Please, Take Care” section.

Color still remain

Waiting for the beginning of the exhibition, Gabriele Zago tell us more about his work. Don’t miss the interview below!

How did you approach photography? 

I have a traditional artistic education, I grew up through freehand drawing and therefore with a more academic language, but I have always been interested in visual arts in all its declinations. However, it was thanks to the travels that I found in photography the medium that most represents me. When I am lucky enough to explore new territories and get in touch with new situations, I feel compelled to immortalize those moments already knowing that that photography will not only describe an instant but will be the beginning of a process that will evolve into something new. 

With your photographs, you take us to faraway places like Ethiopia, Madagascar, Benin. What stories are you looking for? Which stories do you want to tell? 

My research focuses on photographically documenting ethnic groups, territories and populations threatened today by progress and globalization. The photographs that I use for my projects come mainly from travel experiences.

Deception valley

I choose destinations that can enrich my culture and put me to the test, not only physically, but also psychologically. I look for themes that are often little known in the West in order to make my work an instrument of diffusion and information. My shot, therefore, does not want to describe the subject but brings to light the reality that the subject is forced to face. 
I am particularly fascinated and stimulated by the African continent, but I had the opportunity to visit all 5 continents in search of creative ideas. From one of the most recent trips, the one to Papua New Guinea draws inspiration for the project “Colors still remain” that I will exhibit this year as part of Ph.ocus – About photography by Paratissima, presented for the first time by Galleria Ferrero Arte Contemporanea in Ivrea.

Which role does post-production play in your creative process?

My works are born as reportage shots, but post-production is a fundamental element of my artistic expression.
The manipulation of my photographs through graphic devices shows, in an evident and emphasized way, those socio-political processes that are often not visible or do not reach our reality. These are not just photographs, but shots that clearly give back to everyone a process of modification, upheaval and alienation suffered by the subjects and the territory in which they live. 

It is obvious to say that during your travels you have a very different type of equipment at your disposal than a photographer in the studio. What, in your opinion, is the necessary equipment for this type of photography? 

During my reportage trips, I always travel extremely lightweight, most of the time with only one piece of hand luggage. This also determines the volume of the equipment I carry with me. I always travel with my inseparable reflex camera and a couple of lenses that I can use depending on the situations I find myself in. I would like to take a wider choice of lenses with me, but due to the extreme conditions in which I often find myself, they would only get in the way. Since they are not cutlery photos, it would be very difficult to change lenses depending on the situation, with the risk of losing the moment. In some cases, even the smartphone has helped me to capture some situations that required more discretion!
The technical support for me has a secondary role as the focus of my research is not so much the technically perfect shot as the resulting graphic rendering.

Is there a shot that was particularly complicated to take? Tell us about it. 

I must admit that every time I find myself in reportage situations the biggest difficulty to overcome is the tension of not being able to get the “right” shot. My travels bring me into contact with such rare and unique realities that it is almost always difficult to capture them objectively.

The reasons for these “difficulties” can be the most varied, from people’s distrust to cultural differences and religious taboos, without often neglecting the adversities of weather and geographical conditions. Often reaching the most remote tribes has forced me to undertake even arduous crossings of several days in a canoe under the scorching sun or dangerous storms.
For example, in many African tribes photography is seen as a tool that steals the soul; in some remote areas of North Vietnam still strongly subjugated by the war, the zoom of the camera frightens like a weapon; in Benin, photography can become an instrument of blackmail in voodoo; in Papua New Guinea many tribes do not have the slightest perception of why their image should be trapped inside a black box.

Color still remain

In all these situations being able to photograph in a natural way the subject is very difficult and often I had to give up shooting in order to respect the culture with which I measured myself.
In reconnecting to the project “Colors still remain”, great difficulty was also represented by the socio-political and geographical nature of Papua New Guinea, a very unstable and dangerous territory where the beauty of the tribes and their rituals mixes with the violence and guerrillas that must be faced and accepted daily in order to approach these incredible communities.

Gabriele Zago’s photography is a journey to faraway places
Gabriele Zago’s photography is a journey to faraway places
Gabriele Zago’s photography is a journey to faraway places
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What the Lego Birkin Made Me Think About

What the Lego Birkin Made Me Think About

Anna Frattini · 3 days ago · Design, Style

For days, an image of a Birkin made of Lego bricks has been circulating on Instagram. The perfect recipe for viral content. The orange we associate with Hermès reimagined in a new, unsettling way. The ubiquitous Birkin and all other luxury goods transformed into Lego can be found on @glam.tol, the profile that sparked this phenomenon. However, all the content is crafted with the valuable assistance of AI.

Many of the objects conceived by @glam.tol that have gone viral firmly belong to the concept of quiet luxury, an interesting aspect of this phenomenon that reminds us of how attracted we still are to very expensive bags and brand-branded accessories—thus, highly recognizable items like the Ralph Lauren signature cap. According to some, the intention behind these images might be to announce the collaboration between Lego and Hermès. However, on TikTok, others think it’s unlikely given the rarity with which the French fashion house has entered into partnerships throughout its history.

@thebrandblueprint Hermès and Lego partnership is sadly never going to happen because Hermes doesn’t partner with brands #collaboration #hermes #legos #marketing #brand #branding #rollsroyce #mcclaren #greenscreen ♬ original sound – Brooke💡Marketing, Brand, Ecom

In short, a lot of smoke and no fire, except for the umpteenth confirmation of how easy it is to create hyper-realistic images thanks to the use of Artificial Intelligence, a topic that has been debated this year by PhotoVogue but continues to be relevant not only in the world of photography but also in marketing. The virality of these images is the proof.

courtesy @glam.tol

What the Lego Birkin Made Me Think About
What the Lego Birkin Made Me Think About
What the Lego Birkin Made Me Think About
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Swatch pays tribute to the world of The Simpsons

Swatch pays tribute to the world of The Simpsons

Anna Frattini · 2 days ago · Style

The donuts from The Simpsons, Homer’s favorites, have become iconic in our imagination as the quintessential donuts. So much so that Swatch has reproduced them on a watch. SECONDS OF SWEETNESS is a tribute to the world of The Simpsons and the typically American donuts loved by Homer. In short, this Swatch immediately makes us want to rewatch the nineteenth episode of the ninth season of The Simpsons, where Homer is prosecuted by the Giant Donut.

Let’s talk about the watch. It’s an item that plays with the donut theme, becoming immediately recognizable for fans of the TV series. The donut-shaped dial adds a fun touch to the way we wear Swatch, dressed in sugary style on this occasion. Moreover, the watch is also available with SwatchPAY! functionality, very useful in everyday life.

Available from November 2, coinciding with the arrival of the 35th season of The Simpsons. But the surprises don’t end here; Swatch and animated series fans will be surprised by other projects involving all the protagonists of the TV series. This watch comes alongside the launch of two other products also inspired by the world of The Simpsons: WONDROUS WINTER WONDERLAND and TIDINGS OF JOY. The first brings together the cartoon characters in gingerbread version as they dance on the snow-studded strap, while the second immortalizes the Simpson family singing together for the holiday season. Both models are already available in Swatch stores and on the website.

Swatch pays tribute to the world of The Simpsons
Swatch pays tribute to the world of The Simpsons
Swatch pays tribute to the world of The Simpsons
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Everyone wants Dr. Martens’ Jadon collaboration with Ganni

Everyone wants Dr. Martens’ Jadon collaboration with Ganni

Anna Frattini · 2 days ago · Style

The Jadon shoe is celebrating its 10th anniversary, and Dr. Martens has decided to commemorate the occasion with an unexpected partnership with Ganni. Rebellion and coolness come together in a boot that, when reimagined, becomes even more iconic. The photo announcing this partnership, captured by Grant James-Thomas, is a clear sign of the fusion of these two iconic brands.

GANNI è un brand che ha fatto irruzione nei feed di tutti per i look bon ton ma anche smart, dimostrando un dinamismo unico nel suo genere. La componente giocosa e positiva delle sue collezioni assume un carattere progressista che ha permesso al brand danese di farsi conoscere diventando un fenomeno globale. Insomma, c’é tutto. Anche il logo a farfalla di GANNI. Uno degli aspetti più interessanti di questa scarpa, però, sta nel materiale: una combinazione di poliestere e materiali privi di pellame. Ci troviamo quindi davanti a una scarpa che – con ogni probabilità – andrà subito sold-out.

GANNI is a brand that has made its way into everyone’s feeds with its chic and smart looks, demonstrating a unique dynamism. The playful and positive component of its collections takes on a progressive character that has allowed the Danish brand to become a global phenomenon. In short, this partnership has it all, including GANNI’s butterfly logo. However, one of the most interesting aspects of this shoe lies in the material: a combination of polyester and leather-free materials. We are therefore faced with a shoe that will likely sell out immediately.

The price is €285, available in sizes EU36 – 48 on and, as well as in some selected stores.

Everyone wants Dr. Martens’ Jadon collaboration with Ganni
Everyone wants Dr. Martens’ Jadon collaboration with Ganni
Everyone wants Dr. Martens’ Jadon collaboration with Ganni
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Moncler embraces Rick Owens’s futurism

Moncler embraces Rick Owens’s futurism

Anna Frattini · 1 day ago · Style

The collaboration announced today between Moncler and Rick Owens takes us into a new dimension, adorned with meticulously designed garments to fit into the environment recreated by Owens. A certainly innovative and extraordinary scenario, a “Sleep Pod” serving as the backdrop for the entire launch campaign. From the photos, it appears as if we are witnessing a tent with a futuristic character, a backdrop that is both comforting and strange at the same time.

Moncler x Rick Owens: details from the collection

An intimate, deeply introspective project is found in the concept of the silent sleeping pod recreated by Owens. «Halfway between a meat locker and an Egyptian tomb,» reads the press release. A truly captivating concept that comes with matchy-matchy outfits to be worn within this reality isolated from everything and more. Additionally, in the background of the campaign photos, the co-branded logo can be glimpsed, which we will see on all the pieces.

Let’s step out of this Sleep Pod for a moment and talk about the collection: the silhouettes are elongated, and the padding features a very interesting ray pattern. The palette, clearly, plays with very dark tones with the addition of dyed cotton denim and organic cotton jersey along with nylon and cashmere shaded from blue to acid yellow. The variety of garments remains one of the most interesting aspects: flight jackets, puffers, and down jackets, along with extra-long coats, accompany skirts, shorts, and tops. The denim, on the other hand, is cut to create tunics, dresses, and skirts, ring scarves, and shaggy boots along with a quilted blanket. In short, everything we could expect from a collaboration of this caliber is present in this collection.

Moncler embraces Rick Owens’s futurism
Moncler embraces Rick Owens’s futurism
Moncler embraces Rick Owens’s futurism
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