The Guestbook: our interview with SIERMOND

The Guestbook: our interview with SIERMOND

Claudia Fuggetti · 2 years ago · Photography

SIERMOND, Pasquale Autorino in real life, defines himself as a visionary of the unconscious. The main sources of inspiration for his works are the mystical images that appear in his mind during sleep and the Freudian instincts of life and death (Eròs and Thanatos) that move spasmodically in his thoughts. Melancholy, romance, darkness and mystery are the elements that characterize his style, along with the predominance of the color silver, used to portray usually beautiful models, which express the artist’s unexpressed narcissistic side.

We at Collater.al asked SIERMOND to tell us about themselves briefly through an interview, which you can find below:

How did you understand that photography would be part of your life?

I started taking pictures in a period of my life that wasn’t very “shiny”. Having a tormented relationship with sleep and dreaming often, I started, almost for fun, to turn these into reality by starting to photograph aesthetics that satisfied my vision. The feeling of happiness I felt when I completed my first projects made me realize that photography could be a very effective way for me to vent. Almost like an addiction, photography invaded my soul and in a short time became my life. My photographic world had a very “artistic” beginning that in this last period I’m managing to bring also in the commercial one. When your passion starts to become also a form of profit you realize that it is the right way. This last step made me realize that photography would be part of my life.

Which artists have influenced you the most?

I’m very influenced by artists from the past. I love trying to bring past atmospheres into the present. An artist that I admire very much and that I also feel very close to me is Man Ray, an American painter, photographer and graphic designer who is an exponent of Dadaism. I like to call his photography “unconscious”. With his revolutionary style he was really able to transform fragments of our soul into images. In my biography on social networks and on my website I call myself “Visionary of the Unconscious” because like Man Ray my art is based on turning something imaginary and deep into reality. The second artist I refer to is Henry Scott Tuke, a painter with a style marked by Impressionism. He is best known for his paintings of young men and boys. I’ve always been fascinated by the fact that, thanks to his pictorial style, he was able to capture so much beauty and melancholy in the backs and the nails, making something immortal that is not directly aimed at those who capture the image. Very often in my photography I also love to capture what is most true and reflective in a person who “gives you his back”. I don’t always think eyes and smiles reveal authenticity.

Going to another field, the musical artist who accompanied and accompanies my artistic journey is Lana Del Rey. With her, it was love at first listening. Like a flash of lightning. I think that the theory of “similar souls” was born with her. Her melancholic, dark and romantic mood completely envelops my photography. During long days of postproduction her voice accompanies my creative process. These are three of the artists who influence me the most. I love art in all its forms and I am convinced that art generates other art. To conclude, I mention some names such as Tim Walker, Peter Lindberg, Paolo Roversi, Tamara Dean, Gregory Crewdson, Laura Makabresku who influence my artistic world every day.

Why did you choose to propose these images to us?

I made a careful analysis before proposing these nine photographs to you. I started to look at all my work so far and I thought of choosing nine images that represent me and my vision. the first is called “TWO BOYS”: I chose it because it is the first shot in which I began to see the beginning of my photographic world. For me it represents a lot despite the fact that it was done by pure chance in a field in Switzerland with two boys with a very close and intimate friendship. It’s very representative for me because I had a similar moment with a very dear friend of mine lying in a meadow. The second choice takes up the discussion of “giving one’s back” and how much of infinity there can be in a back. The work is entitled “BOUNDLESS BACK”. It was taken on a day when suddenly, along a mountain road, everything around us has become gray.

The third choice represents my way of seeing the male figure. Ethereal and refined boys. The flowers and the light light of the sunset make “THE LAST NARCISSUS SUNSET” a photo with a magical atmosphere of the past. the fourth is a shot taken from one of my favorite projects “THE BLIND HAZE”. I wanted to represent in this project a crazy and blind love, when the only thing that counts is the body you have next to you. The choice of using two male figures was made to give an even stronger and more significant imprint to the project, while the fifth is based on the concept of dream/nightmare. I often dream of drowning. The location in this case has made everything magical. The rocks taken from this shot seem almost clouds and the photo is invaded by this white white as if they were sheets. “LOOSE DREAMS” is the title of the work. “BLUE” is the title of the sixth photograph. I chose it not only because I find that the light of the very first dawn is magnificent but also for the subject depicted.

In art Nicholas Fols was the natural person who accompanied and accompanied my entire photographic journey. The seventh is a fairly recent shot. I decided to select it because it represents my crazy and creative side. I love photography because it allows you to give a new point of view to anything. the eighth photo is always an excerpt from a very strong and significant project “DAD & SON”. It was nice for me to take pictures of this father and son couple almost as if I were a spectator who sees something of his own in those feelings. Catching every emotion was magical. In addition I think that very often the parent-child relationship is complex to manage especially when the points of view are very different despite the fact that there is a very strong affection. I close my selection with “REBORN”. In this shot I wanted to represent what I call “SIERMOND” (my nickname on social networks). It would be all my artistic and creative side: if it was possible to turn this energy into a person it would look like this. A blindfolded teenager wrapped in this silvery energy and emerging from nature.

What kind of beauty are you looking for?

I look for the beauty of reality. The beauty dirtied by suffering and pain, the beauty of melancholy, elements that contrast with the aesthetic beauty of fashion and landscape create an explosive mix. I would add that the choice of the model represents a fundamental phase for my shots. I tend to prefer models that have aesthetic characteristics similar to mine or that I feel emotionally close to. Therefore selecting a figure that can represent me is not a short or simple process. For me, beauty is a very subjective point of view. I think that for a photographer the choice of the model is really a fundamental part.

What are your plans for the future?

For the future I would like to continue shooting by expanding my range of action, exploring different territories from my path also to create new energies and stimuli. In addition, I hope for an individual growth that can act as a food for my art, making it a stimulus and source of emotion for others.

Follow SIERMOND’s take over on  @Collater.al‘s Instagram profile!

The Guestbook: our interview with SIERMOND
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Has food truly conquered us?

Has food truly conquered us?

Anna Frattini · 2 months ago · Photography

Over the past year, the internet seems to be obsessed with food culture, fueling a trend that is now evident even in the world of visual culture. From the Tomato Girl Summer, which many mock retrospectively, to the foodie fashion girlies, Balenciaga’s collaboration with Erewhon, and the massive success of The Bear. Food appears to be experiencing a rebirth, but in the worlds of art, photography, and design, it has always been present. Is this just a passing trend, or is it the glorification of an element that has always been part of our lives?

Un’illustrazione di Maisy Summer

From Tomato Girl Summer to the pomegranate

It was only in 2020, with lockdown recipes—does anyone remember Dalgona Coffe?—that so much talk about food emerged. On TikTok, @wishbonekitchen made us dream by showing us her life as a private chef in the Hamptons this summer. Unforgettable were her Heirloom Tomato Gallette and the garden where she harvested fruits, vegetables, and herbs. In 2023, it seems to have been the summer of food not only with the release of the second season of The Bear but also with Tomato Girl Summer. On the other hand, according to Danielle Cohen on The Cut, it now seems to be the time of the pomegranate.

 
 
 
 
 
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Un post condiviso da Cansu Porsuk Rossi (@cansupo)

Thanks to its shape and the vivid red that characterizes it, this fruit is widely recognized as a symbol of fertility in many parts of the world. But not only that, we find the pomegranate in mythology, art history, and, according to Cohen, even in the Torah. In short, fruits and vegetables seem to be largely protagonists of this rebirth, so we have collected some works and photographs by artists and photographers we have talked about in the past and more.

Browsing through our archives, we remembered Michael Crichton‘s photos and his photographic series, Conceptual Food, as well as Dan Bannino, who many years ago narrated the eating habits of the powerful. But there is also Stephanie Sarley, an artist who, with fruit fingering, challenged the way the art world has represented the female reproductive organ throughout its history.

 
 
 
 
 
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Un post condiviso da Stephanie Sarley (@stephanie_sarley)

Why it seems not to be just a passing trend

The success of food in visual culture can be attributed to its tangible communicative power. We see and experience the colors and textures of food daily, all evocative elements of memories that we have been collecting forever. In conclusion, we can only wonder which will be the next fruit to receive all this attention, already dedicated to tomatoes and pomegranates, even before avocados and bananas.

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Has food truly conquered us?
Has food truly conquered us?
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Michel Haddi beyond the fashion shots

Michel Haddi beyond the fashion shots

Anna Frattini · 2 months ago · Photography

29 ARTS IN PROGRESS recently showcased Michel Haddi: Beyond Fashion, a photographic exhibition dedicated to the Franco-Algerian photographer, marking his first solo exhibition in Milan. Starting from January 16, the second chapter of this exhibition opens, featuring unconventional shots infused with a street and urban soul. Additionally, there are elements of irony and sensuality that highlight Haddi’s complex personality.

michel haddi
© Michel Haddi – Debbie Harry, British Vogue, London, 1994 | Courtesy of 29 ARTS IN PROGRESS gallery

In this second chapter, nude shots and unpublished works by Michel Haddi are presented, stemming from advertising campaigns he personally captured. The displayed photographs capture the spirit of their time, thanks to influential figures such as John Galliano or Patsy Kensit, who have played pivotal roles in the realms of fashion, cinema, and music.

Michel Haddi has the ability to portray his subjects with both irony and depth, and each of his shots tells a unique story. His life, marked by a turbulent start, has nevertheless propelled him to become one of the leading fashion photographers from the 1990s to the present day.

Michel Haddi beyond the fashion shots
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Michel Haddi beyond the fashion shots
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Joel Meyerowitz is the master of color photography

Joel Meyerowitz is the master of color photography

Collater.al Contributors · 1 month ago · Photography

A few weeks ago, the Huxley-Parlour gallery in London announced the new exhibition by Joel Meyerowitz, which opened on January 17th. We couldn’t help but talk about him, the American photographer born in New York in 1938, famous for his street photography, and recognized as one of the pioneers of color photography. The London exhibition, titled “Dialogues,” highlights this aspect effectively. Pairs of photographs engage in a dialogue concerning light, color, and composition. The pairings are chosen to investigate the development of color in the artist’s work, set within non-hierarchical and unresolved compositions.

The exhibition in London

Meyerowitz’s imagery blends a distinctly American aesthetic with a meditative approach to color. Spanning from 1964 to 2011, the exhibition at Huxley-Parlour reveals Meyerowitz’s enduring interest in the sensory and evocative experiences of his surroundings. Paired with lesser-known images from the artist’s extensive archive, the exhibition features some of Meyerowitz’s most famous works, including his early street photography and images from his seminal series, Cape Light.

Joel Meyerowitz and the Color Revolution

Joel Meyerowitz is widely acknowledged as one of the first photographers, along with William Eggleston and Stephen Shore, to bring color photography from the periphery to the center of fine art photography. Historically, where black and white photography was considered a serious medium, color was widely viewed as technically inferior and aesthetically limited, relegated to advertising campaigns, television, and personal holiday photographs. In the London exhibition, it’s interesting to trace Meyerowitz’s shift from black and white to color. On display are works from “A Question of Color,” where Meyerowitz, carrying two cameras, paired black-and-white and color prints of nearly identical scenes.

Courtesy Joel Meyerowitz

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Joel Meyerowitz is the master of color photography
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A photographic journey in Bangkok with Xiaomi

A photographic journey in Bangkok with Xiaomi

Giulia Guido · 1 month ago · Photography

Not even a week ago, Alessia Glaviano – Head of Global PhotoVogue – a guest on our Spigola podcast, reminded us that it no longer matters whether you shoot with a camera or a smartphone. What matters is the intention behind the shot, not the means. We pondered deeply on this statement, and although there was initially some skepticism, we concluded that to take a true stance on the matter, we had to try it ourselves: capturing moments solely with a smartphone, but with the same attitude we would have had with a professional camera. Xiaomi provided us with the opportunity and the means.

Almost by chance, Xiaomi presented us with a challenge: to visit a distant place and attempt to capture its uniqueness using the brand-new Redmi Note 13 Pro+ 5G. And so began our journey, short but very intense, in Bangkok.

All the promises of this new device – which, along with four others, forms the new Redmi Note 13 Series, further enriching the brand’s Redmi Note lineup – were substantial. Starting from the battery, rechargeable to 100% in just 19 minutes with a lasting capacity of days (not hours), and of course, the camera system consisting of 3 cameras, including a main 200 MP camera, an ultra-wide-angle camera, and a macro camera.

We decided to put Xiaomi to the test in every moment spent in the Thai capital. The first stop was at the Royal Palace and the Wat Pho temple, where the goal was to capture the colors of the mosaics and decorations.

Xiaomi

Being one of the most touristy places in the city, we encountered many people who, like us, were fascinated by the architecture of these sacred places. The Redmi Note 13 Pro+ 5G came to our aid in this moment as well. The smartphone is equipped with AI-based editing tools that, among other things, allow us to remove people who accidentally end up in our shots. You know those photos you see on Instagram of tourist spots always empty? Now you can have them too, effortlessly!

But a city is not only visited during the day; often, it comes to life at night, illuminated by a myriad of different lights. In our case, the lights were those of the legendary tuk-tuks, indispensable in a trip to Bangkok. In this case, the challenge was formidable: darkness, colored lights, movement. All the ingredients for a challenging shot were present.

Xiaomi

Not content with just the shot, we continued to play with AI tools and added a bit more movement, some stars, many stars.

When traveling, we know very well that we are not only captivated by architecture, landscape, and glimpses, but we also focus on the faces we encounter on the streets. However, we often don’t have much time to photograph them, sometimes because they move, other times because we are the ones on the move. That’s exactly what happened to us in the characteristic Thai markets, first and foremost the Floating Market.

Reviewing the photos on the return flight and at home with friends was like reliving the journey once again, leaving no detail behind.

Xiaomi

In Bangkok, on the occasion of the launch of the new Redmi Note 13 Series, the brand also introduced the brand-new Redmi Watch 4 and Redmi Buds 5 Pro. Visit Xiaomi’s website to discover all the features of these devices.

Xiaomi

Photos shot on Xiaomi Redmi Note 13 Pro+ 5G

A photographic journey in Bangkok with Xiaomi
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A photographic journey in Bangkok with Xiaomi
A photographic journey in Bangkok with Xiaomi
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