Olives in the street – Monograph

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Olives in the street, published by Lugo Land for Edition del bradipo, Lugo (RA). 2017.
Edition 2 printed 2018.
Signed by the artist. 

This project was made in and around Lugo, Italy between June and July 2016 during Emma Ressel's stay as the recipient of the third Bard Lugo Land Residency. Curated by Tim Davis, Francesco Neri and Luca Nostri. Photographs by Emma Ressel. Texts by Laurie Dahlberg, Francesco Neri and Luca Nostri. Book designed by Fiippo Nostri. Edition of 60.

Excerpts from essays in book: 

"...More than just defying the idea of a photographic ‘moment,’ [Emma Ressel's] photographs share the studious, meditative feeling of Baroque still life paintings. Even her images of rooms — places of human activity, implied by the presence of a cheery fire, disarranged chairs, or a live television — take on the timeless and uncanny quality of the unpeopled, parallel worlds that those earlier painters constructed so convincingly. Part of the kinship is found in Ressel’s attention to the formal properties of the composition. Formalism, the aesthetic theory that meaning and intelligence are invested in an artwork’s line, shape, color, volume, and composition, is a relatively new idea. Back in 1771, writing his Discourses on Art, Sir Joshua Reynolds was dismissive of the “humbler” profession of the still life painter (such was the notion that Man’s deeds were more important than Nature’s objects), but he emphasized the consequently greater importance of what we now call formal elements. “The art of colouring, and the skillful management of light and shadow, are essential requisites in his confined labors,” he observed, because for the still life painter, “these pretty excellences are here essential beauties; and without this merit the artist’s work will be more short-lived than the objects of his imitation.” Ressel’s work is filled with ‘pretty excellences,’ but it is backed by a wry malevolence and a deceptive wit. In fact, the beauty of these compositions, filled with a sense of light and air and succulent color that belongs only to photography, endows them with the fascination of the Trojan Horse: it’s the gift that we happily accept on first sight, only to discover that we’ve let in something just a little bit nasty..."
Laurie Dahlberg

"...Like so many great photographers, Emma Ressel sees the world differently and in conceiving her work she has been able to project onto familiar things a new and rich imagery. Looking at her photographs is like trying a new dish, something with a flavor we might never have tasted before..."
Luca Nostri & Francesco Neri

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