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Masters of street photography

Written and researched by Carlo Traina


Garry Winogrand
(New York, 14.01.1928 – Tijuana, 19.03.1984)
“Photography is not about the thing photographed. It is about how that thing looks photographed”.

“Consider Garry Winogrand’s picture: so rich in fact and suggestion, and so justly resolved, more complex and more beautiful than the movie that Alfred Hitchcock might derive from it.”
(from “Looking at Photographs” by John Szarkowski)


Garry Winogrand is one of  the “giants” of  the Post-War Amerian Street Photography . Together with “legends” like  Alfred Stieglitz , Henry Cartier Bresson , Elliott Erwitt , Robert Doisneau , and so on , he is considered one of the founders of Street Photography.

His shots have immortalized the everyday life in the American metropolis in the ‘60 and ‘70 . After studying painting and photojournalism , Winogrand was quite impressed by the social photography of Walker Evans and Robert Frank . His final goal was to represent the American society through the moods , the faces, the behaviours and the everyday situations of the common people and of the society (political and cultural events, protest demonstrations and social events). For this reason he liked to shoot going on the street without any previous plan , using a quick rangefinder camera and wide-angle lenses with manual focusing. When shooting he often tilted the lens upwards, with shoots literally taken from the hip . Between the end of the ‘60 and the beginning of the ‘70 , Winogrand went everyday on the streets of New York with his Leica M4.  The photographer Joel Meyerowitz , that was often with him , so describes him during such days : “Garry set a tempo on the street so strong that it was impossible not to follow it. It was like jazz. You just had to get in the same groove.” Winogrand  “Street Photography” is an introspective, thoughtful, intimate but also ironic way to look at the American society which before had never been paid much attention. He was , without any doubt , one of the most prolific photographers of his times (he has taken over 5 millions photos) and one of the more passionate. However, he despised the term “Street Photographer”: he simply considered himself as a “photographer” , and he was more interested in taking photos than being classified by the critics and the art historians.

Winogrand died at the age of 56 , but he has left behind a huge archive of 300.000 images , most of which never developed . Some of these were collected , exposed and published by the MOMA museum in a volume titled “ Wimogrand , Figments from the Real World”

Awards : Three Gugghenheim Fellowship Awards (19641969 and 1979) and one National Endowment of the Arts Award (1979).


ü  The Animals (1969), a significant collection of images taken at the Bronx Zoo and the Aquarium in Coney Island,

ü  Women are beautiful (1975), tribute to female beauty in different places and situations,

ü  Public relations (1977), in which he devoted his attention to the resonance of the media on people’s reactions,

ü  Fort Worth Fat Stock Show and Rodeo (1980).


Written and researched by Fabio Rigo

Defining what Street photography actually is , it’s a task probably best left to be discussed by much better photographers than me , but one important point is universally agreed by all street photographers (or streephers if you wish) : size matters.
I am talking about the size and weight of the camera one has to carry around as a mean to capture those beautiful and significant pictures that are the core of street photography . A prerequisite of street photography is to use a camera that is portable and compact, the ideal cameras for street being light in weight and discrete (the less you are seen, the better).

The great masters of reportage belonging to the past analogical era used to use cameras that still have a reputation that borders on myth, in spite of the predominance of digital. The best analog cameras for street photography are the rangefinder cameras, such as Leica M or Voigtlander Bessa, with lens of optimal quality, ranging from 35mm to the canonical 50mm. They are compact so that they do not draw much attention, they are light in weight (mercifully for the necks and arms of the street photographer engaged in long walks on the streets) and finally they have a very silent shutter.
Here comes 2008 and finally something new appeared on the market that seems to be tailored to answer to the points raised above: the first E.V.I.L. camera (which stands for Electronic Viewfinder, Interchangeable Lens), the Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1 was presented.

Some people call them mirror-less DSLRs. These cameras have interchangeable lens like DSLRs but they lack a moving mirror and many of them use an electronic viewfinder. However, the key, exciting feature is that EVIL cameras take images at or near DSLR quality but with a significantly smaller and lighter body.

Since the debut , in 2008 , EVIL cameras , or if you prefer a less spooky indication , Mirrorless cameras have been produced by all the major players on the market , from CANON with its quite traditional and subdued EOS M , to the bold and innovative Sony A7 and A7R full frame mirroless camera (the first ever).

In this little space we are going to examine the various possibility of the EVIL world , its pros and cons, specifically considering the world of street photography : it goes without saying that this is meant to be as an informative column , with no pretence of absolute knowledge or originality , just a way to illustrate what I have learned as a first hour EVIL Shooter.

References :; ;

Neighborhood Coppedè A timeless place in the heart of the capitol

30 gennaio 2014 – 28 febbraio 2014

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The initiative began as The project “Will to emerge” devised by Dario Biello and produced by the Cultural Association Cinema Young. WRE’s main objective is the discovery and spreading of the architecture of the ’900, often understimated by a generation that does not recognize the real value of these buildings, that instead represent the link between past and future. The history of the district started in 1916 by the genius of Gino Coppedè, not far away from “Piazza Buenos Aires”, on the today’s via Tagliamento in Rome. A wave of decorations and volumes generated at the focal point of the Mincio square to create a magical atmosphere with feelings that intertwine continuously with different styles belonging to the medieval tradition, to the Liberty period , but also being typically Roman and Classic.

The initiative began as a project to resurface Want devised by Dario Biello and produced by the Cultural Cinema Young. VDR’s main objective is the discovery and spread of the architecture of the ‘900 often devalued by a generation that does not recognize the real value of these buildings instead represent the link between past and future. The history of the district was founded in 1916 by the genius of Gino Coppedè, near Piazza Buenos Aires, the current via Tagliamento in Rome. A wave of decorations and volumes generated at the focal point of the square around the Mincio create a magical atmosphere between feelings that intertwine continuously with different styles belonging to the medieval tradition, to liberty, but also to taste typical Roman and classic.

10.00 – 21.00

Ingresso libero

Piazza Colonna, Roma