10 March 2021 > 23 May 2021

Premio Graziadei per la FotografiaRachele Maistrello, Alba Zari

the exhibition’s closing has been extended to Sunday 23 May 2021

MAXXI Architettura archive centre
curated by Simona Antonacci

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The archive, a personal and collective memory outside of classic narrative plots, is at the centre of the two award-winning works.

The Graziadei Prize for Photography was established in 2012 by Graziadei Studio Legale with the dual aim of promoting the work of young authors and supporting it over time. In 2020, the jury composed of Giovanna Calvenzi, Armin Linke, Francesco Graziadei, Margherita Guccione and Bartolomeo Pietromarchi declared Rachele Maistrello’s Green Diamond project the winner. Her work is on display with Occult, a new project by Alba Zari, winner of the Prize in 2019 with The Y.

Green Diamond by Rachele Maistrello reconstructs the love story born inside a Chinese factory between a worker, Li Jian Ping, and an acrobat, Gao Yue. Hovering between reconstruction and authenticity, between the possible and the plausible, the project reflects the reliability of the archive and its extraordinary imaginative potential.

For Alba Zari, on the other hand, the archive is the starting point for exploring the roots of her own identity. In Occult, images from the family archive and the Children of God’s propaganda, the sect the artist was born into, constitute the sources of a story in which personal and collective events are intertwined. In contrast, the photographs and film footage taken during the journey seem to sublimate the painful existential content of her story.

header: Rachele Maistrello, “Gao Yue #1”, 1998-1999, courtesy of the artist. Alba Zari, “Awakening in Zen Beach. Koh Phangan”, Thailand, 2020, courtesy the artist.