GUIDO - GUIDI
APRIL 2020 // Charlie Williams
Being confined into the four walls of my living room has had me thinking a lot about Italian photographer Guido Guidi’s ‘Preganziol (1983)’, a series of sixteen large-format colour photographs of the four bare walls of an empty room. Throughout the sequence, there is an evident passing of time, a difficult concept to portray through an inanimate medium. Time is represented by the movement of light against the wall, the first twelve images create a topographical set comparable to the Bescher’s work, almost identical images with just the position of the projected light differing.
The exploration of light, the fundamental component to a photograph, is interesting because usually it is not necessarily a subject, until it falls against a surface or object, creating a harmony and becoming significant enough to be a subject of a photograph. The work embodies the notion of the void; the knowledge that beyond the frame, reality goes on unfolding, which is evident by the clever use of shadow play which teases the outside of the room by showing us the outline of a tree. I think this is an inspiring concept that can be related to this time of crisis, outside there is a reality going on, and it will come back to us soon.
After 12 images of the same wall, Guidi turns his viewpoint 90 degrees right, showing the window providing the light and revealing a new corner of the room which is filled with decay. This change in perspective creates a feeling of claustrophobia as it emphasises the small size of room, a feeling that I think we can all resonate with.
The faded hues and textures of the walls, floor and ceiling of the room are captured in great detail by the 8x10” camera, at times rendering the wall almost like a painting as abstract shapes of blue and brown fill the empty canvas of the surface. This series has influenced me to pay attention to textures a lot more, I find beauty in the roughness and the colours that are created out of decay.
I hope this series can motivate you in some way by showing you that great work can be created in such tight parameters, and although we may not be in Italy with lovely decaying walls, the weather has been pretty nice recently so try using the light as a subject, not just a tool for making the image.