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Giacomo Brunelli : "Animal-focused street photography”

By Laetitia Bataille.

N°29 Février 2012
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This month, we are proud to publish a Portfolio by Italian photographer Giacomo Brunelli, who has been working for several years on animal photography, and whose pictures have been widely exhibited in various art galleries in Europe and USA.

An as echo to the exhibition intitled "The animals" currently held in the Galerie Tarquinia in Trouville-sur-Mer (France) we wanted to dedicate our monthly Portfolio to this italian artist who has been working for several years on pictures of animals -including horses, with the aim to show "their freedom to move".

Giacomo Brunelli
Giacomo Brunelli seldom makes colour pictures, except for self-portraits like this one. © Giacomo Brunelli

Giacomo Brunelli was born 1977 in Perugia, a little town in the Italian district of Umbria, where the great Renaissance painter Pietro Vanucci, nicknamed Perugino, also came from.

Young Giacomo's interest for photography started with a japanese camera from the sixties belonging to his father. Giacomo graduated with a degree in International Communications - and thus started photography in a complete self-taught manner.

His images are all shot on a 35 mm japanese camera, Miranda Sensomat, made in the 60’s with a removable viewfinder, allowing waist level composition, or shooting with the camera set on ground. The film he uses is a Kodak Tri-x 400. "The best time to capture my subjects is in the morning", Giacomo says, "using both direct light when the sun is out or diffused light on a cloudy day".

Giacomo Brunelli does'nt want to use a numeric camera and seldom makes colour pictures. "What I like is printing my pictures myself in the darkroom ; they come with rounded corners and black edges".

«I love horses because of their movements, they actually are movement...»

Giacomo refuses any informatic help, and uses no special effects obtained by a software. "I only use a computer to scan the pictures I need to send to magazines !".

The freedom to move

"I have been working on the series of animals for four years", Giacomo explains "and with them I want to photograph their freedom to move. But I am also trying to give information about their bodies (skin, hair, ears, legs) and to investigate my own reaction in their presence".

"When I was a child, I used to spend time playing with animals and I think that is why I push the lens often to its closest point of focus, almost touching the subject and forcing flight or fight from the animal, which is when I record its reaction".
All the animals I takes pictures of are found in the backyards, small villages, fields and farms, and I call the way I work “animal-focused street photography”.

"Once I see an animal that I want to photograph, I try to ignore it, then I run after it which usually gains a response. Sometimes I just stare at it and see what happens. The reactions are different, sometimes the animal is curious about the camera, and sometimes it gets scared about the noise of the shutter".
Giacomo appreciates the company of horses -he has been attending a riding-school regularily for one year- and really loves horses because he loves their movements. "They actually ARE movement..." he says.

Giacomo Brunelli's series on animals have been exhibited widely in shows in London (UK), Hamburg (Germany) Boston (USA) Milano (Italy) and many other places. His work also is in the collection of the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston (Texas) in the Portland Art Museum (Oregon) and The New Art Gallery in Walsall (UK).

His work has already won a number of prizes, including the Sony World Photography Award, and the Grand Prix in Lodz, (Poland). He has also featured widely in the art and photography press including Eyemazing (Holland), B&W Magazine (USA), Creative Review (UK), Foto & Video (Russia), Images Magazine (France), Photographie (Germany), Katalog (Denmark), AdBusters (Canada).
His first monography "Animals" has been published by Dewi Lewis Publishing, in 2008.

Exhibition "Animals"
From February 3 to March 31
Galerie Tarquinia
Place du Casino
14360 Trouville-sur-Mer

Portfolio Giacomo Brunelli
© Giacomo Brunelli

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