Meerror // Leonardo Magrelli
Born in Rome in 1989. Holds a bachelor’s degree in Design from “La Sapienza” university in Rome (class of 2012, full marks and high honour). Currently studies Art History in Rome, to get his second bachelor’s degree. In 2010 starts working with the photographer Marco Delogu, director of Fotografia – International Rome’s Photography Festival, and chief editor of the publishing house Punctum Press. Aside from collaborating with the organization of the festival, Leonardo also designed many of the books published by Punctum. In 2011 starts collaborating with the graphic and book designer Riccardo Falcinelli. In 2014 starts working on his own, to focus more on his photography.
The Meerror project shows what mirrors reflect when we are not in front of them. It consists in a series of photos taken facing a mirror, so we should see ourselves reflected in it, but we don’t, as if we were invisible. The result are real images, that exist in the world, but that we can never witness, for we are their own interference. In fact, we will never be able to observe directly what a mirror shows when we are not facing it, because every time we step in front of it, the image that was reflected a moment before is modified by our appearance. Only disappearing, we can observe reality without alterations.
Thus self-portrait and still life collide, creating images that are both the things and none at the same time. In fact, up to where is it legitimate to speak of portrait? Each one of these pictures premise it and is the result of the cancellation of a self-portrait. Yet is our very absence, an absence that turns these images into still lives, that triggers the mechanism of the image.
Finally it is important to discus the legitimacy of manipulating the images. Even if his words do not refer to digital photography, on the matter I like to quote Todd Hido: “I shoot sort of like a documentarian but I print like a painter. All my stuff is shot with natural light on a tripod. Untouched, and unstaged […]. In the darkroom I’ll twist it all around in anyway I find that works, that still feels real to me.” Moreover, in this case, only through the manipulation of the image, we are able to see what nor our eyes neither the camera lens could.
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