Giorgio di Noto has been selected as one of BJP's 20 photographers to watch in 2013
Author: British Journal of Photography
14 Jan 2013 Tags: Ones to watch
The Arab Spring uprisings are the subject of Giorgio di Noto’s project, Arab Revolt, a collection of black-and-white Polaroids that resemble historical snapshots from bygone conflicts. The series was made one year after the first uprisings began, however, and di Noto has never been to North Africa. Instead, it’s the result of sifting through hundreds of images and videos posted online by amateurs who have witnessed the conflicts; di Noto then singled out particular frames on-screen and re-photographed them with a Polaroid camera. The pixellation of the frames is softened and the images take on a new meaning, recontextualised and reappropriated as physical objects by di Noto.
Di Noto got serious about photography just three years ago, after assisting a photography printer while studying photography history and theory at university. Darkroom and printing techniques are still his passion and still represent a very important part of his work, he says, but he credits Japanese photographer Hiroshi Sugimoto with having “changed my way of thinking about photography”.
His work explores the relationship between the language and the content of images, as well as theories of reproduction and ownership. And all of these concepts can be seen in Arab Revolt. “Through this ambiguity, which managed to conceal the nature of the photographs, I wanted to represent the overlap between documenting and witnessing, between pictures produced (and
post-produced) by photographers, and homemade pictures provided by people actually participating in the events,” he says.
Image © Giorgio Di Noto.
He hopes that Arab Revolt, which was shortlisted for the 2012 Dummy Award at the Photo Book Festival, can contribute to debates on the role of images and photojournalism in the face of constantly changing technology and the growth of citizen reportage via social media. “Behind my projects there is always the idea that photography does not represent reality, and it does not reveal the truth,” di Noto says. “I believe this is extremely important in understanding how images work.”
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