Despite the absence of a ‘Bagni di Lucca arts festival’ this year, the town is abounding with art and photographic exhibitions, no less than three having been inaugurated in the past few days.
One of them is titled ‘L’irreversilibiltà del sogno’ (the irreversibility of the dream’ – i.e. the permanence of the moment of taking a photograph) and is a collection of photographs by Sergio Garbari at Shelley House. It opened on the 4th of August and runs until the 27th of the month.
Born in Bagni di Lucca in 1955, Sergio was brought up in an ambience of film and photography thanks to his father who was chief projectionist at Florence’s Ariston cinema. (A sort of ‘Cinema Paradiso’ experience in fact!) In 1976 Sergio became an architecture student at Florence University. Since 1981 he has been official photographer for the world-famous Uffizi art gallery in Florence where he supplies pictures for exhibition catalogues.
In addition Sergio has extensively photographed the Medici villas and such iconic places as the Boboli gardens, the Medici chapel and the San Marco museum.
At the same time Sergio has explored more experimental aspects of his art. For example, he exhibited photographs of the ex-prison of Thessaloniki in Greece in 2008.
There are also some beautifully lyrical compositions. I especially liked this one:
I was particularly taken by Sergio Garbari’s use of infra-red photography which he explained to me was a somewhat difficult process as all light, including that emanating from the camera itself which had to be specially cushioned against any luminous infiltration. Here are some infra-red photographs of those celebrated Boboli gardens.
Don’t miss this exhibition and certainly don’t miss the Shelley House book-shop and gallery on your next visit to Bagni di Lucca Villa.
There’s an interesting duo of photographs on the exterior wall of Shelley House to the right of its entrance. Why are they of special interest? Do let me know. (Sorry no prizes given – there are enough free surprises anyway by visiting the great addition to Bagni’s cultural landscape that is called Shelley House.
(Sergio Garbari outside Shelley House)
PS Shelley House is open from Thursday to Saturday: The next major event there will be its open –air ‘salon’ which will take place on 13th August at 6 pm