Elisa Sighicelli

Laure Genillard

The Turin-born, London-based photographer Elisa Sighicelli looks for signs of the numinous in empty and desultory spaces. For her recent series “Santiago” (all works 2000), she visited Santiago de Compostela, the most important pilgrimage site in Spain, but pointedly ignored the more famous and crowded landmarks. Instead, she photographed apartments that are usually rented out to students, but which were then uninhabited. Through a meticulous orchestration of light, she dramatized these dowdy, limbolike spaces.

Sighicelli’s photographs are almost all square in format and mounted on light boxes. However, most of the reverse side of each transparency is covered over, so that the backlighting is confined to specific zones. This works to haunting effect in Santiago: Table, where a round dining table, covered in two orangey-brown tablecloths, has been photographed from near floor level, so that

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