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Luigi Ghirri, Modena, 1972, C-print, 5 1/8 × 7 1/8". From the series “Kodachrome,” 1970–78.

Luigi Ghirri

Matthew Marks Gallery

Luigi Ghirri, Modena, 1972, C-print, 5 1/8 × 7 1/8". From the series “Kodachrome,” 1970–78.

Luigi Ghirri’s photographs of Italy feel like they’ve been developed by the sun. Beautiful women peel off stone walls; the Coca-Cola tomato red that seems to embody an era shows up in signs on a beach and in a shopwindow; a deeply tan man lies on the sand next to a pair of loafers the same color; a bleached-out olive tree grows amid crumbling walls. The sun adds a languid filter; these scenes linger in what Ghirri called photography’s “slowness of vision”—not because they are static (even his still lifes feel transient, part of a road trip), but because they are themselves in the process of turning into photographs.

I was introduced to Ghirri only a few years ago, with an exhibition at Matthew Marks and with Maria Antonella Pelizzari’s feature in this magazine. The cover image for that issue—a mysterious scene in which an older woman dressed in street clothes is walking

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