Ten photography exhibitions not to be missed this fall

Experimentation for the exhibitions in Paris and New York, great classics in Italy. From Avedon to Patti Smith, from Lisetta Carmi to Martin Parr. Here are the most interesting exhibitions closing this 2022.

A major fall comeback is expected in Paris from November 8. The Fondation Henri Cartier-Bresson is attempting to bring together two great and highly celebrated authors of the 20th century, Henri Cartier-Bresson and Martin Parr. The former was the founder of the Magnum agency, the latter a member of the agency, often argumentative with its choices, in short, the reconciliation between two icons of photography so distant and so close at the same time.

However, the exhibition that has kicked off all kinds of debates about contemporary photography is the retrospective dedicated to Wolfgang Tillmans in these last months of 2022 at MoMA. In long articles in the New York Times, and in Aperture, the work of the German photographer is discussed and, this time, unreservedly celebrated, so cross-cutting that it is difficult to find a common thread, and perhaps that is precisely his extraordinary way of conveying something to us in these very complex years. 

Wolfgang Tillmans, New York, 2001

And then there is Paris again, which in November hosts the Paris Photo, the art fair that shows the path the global photography market and collecting are moving toward. During this period, the French capital always proves to be the place where museums, foundations and galleries work with images without fear of contamination.

At the Centre Pompidou on October 20, Patti Smith opens with “Evidence: Patti Smith & Soundwalk Collective”, a complex exhibition that, in addition to photography, will be about writing, poetry, installations, the articulated world Patti Smith belongs to today – just look at the installations the artist brought to Milan, for the 23rd Triennale, in the space curated by Fondation Cartier pour l’Art Contemporain.

This 2022 also means war and memory: still in Paris, until January 15, 2023, the Maison Européenne de la Photographie is hosting the Ukrainian photographer and artist Boris Mikhailov, with his immense work showing the Soviet disinformation and propaganda for more than fifty years. The works of Mikhailov exhibited at MEP – between documentation and conceptual – are more than eight hundred, collected in the “Journal Ukrainien”. This is how photography manages to show us the reasons and causes of contemporary complexities.

“Relationship”, Richard Avedon. © Richard Avedon Foundation
“Relationship”, Richard Avedon. © Richard Avedon Foundation

Italy is oriented toward the great classics with the exploration of their archives, often reinterpreted and shown in a different light.

At the Royal Palace, Milan, we find the retrospective of Richard Avedon curated by Rebecca Senf (link to article) among fashion, portraits of friends and artists and life in his New York.

Opened last spring after completing the extension work designed by Michele De Lucchi, the new space of Gallerie d’Italia in Turin hosts a major exhibition curated by Giovanni Battista Martini. It is dedicated to Lisetta Carmi, one of the most innovative and reserved Italian photographers who, after her passing last July, we hope will be re-read and rediscovered with new exhibitions and publications.

Still in Milan, at Fondazione Stelline came the award-winning photographs of the Sony Photography Award, the exhibition curated by Barbara Silbe is the annual summary of the award that brings together the best of world photography divided into several thematic categories (from news, sports, nature, and portraits), this year with an arrangement designed exclusively for the Italian exhibition space.

The underground, Paris, 1965 © Lisetta Carmi – Martini & Ronchetti

Outside the big cities, Conegliano (TV) is hosting a retrospective on the most extraordinary of paparazzi, Ron Galella, with all his “famous subjects doing unfamous things,” according to Andy Warhol’s definition of his favorite photographer’s work.

The Italian-German photographer Armin Linke and photography historian Estelle Blaschke are the authors of “Image Capital” at the MAST Foundation, curated by Francesco Zanot. A project composed of texts, images and documents used to explore the practical uses of images and photography in world history: from scientific research at CERN in Geneva, to the stages of industrial production processes, to automatic recognition, to the transformation of images from cultural capital to economic and financial capital, as occurs in the Getty Images bunker at Iron Mountain, called the “storage site of humanity’s visual memory.”

© Ron Galella, Ltd., 2022, Windblown Jackie, October 7, 1971, Madison Avenue, New York City
© Ron Galella, Ltd., 2022, Windblown Jackie, October 7, 1971, Madison Avenue, New York City

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