Photography that Flattens Worlds and Stretches the Soul

This is not the first time we have featured Italian photographer Luca Tombolini; an artist with a strong portfolio of work that inseminates landscapes with ruminative gravitas, his new set LS IX is a mature and more abstract variation on one of his signature themes.

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Luca’s LS IX landscapes are chromatically and compositionally restrained, capturing the vastness of the Moroccan desert. Stripped of characters, the character of the space itself comes to the fore in the tension between land and sky; between the space and the touch of the sun; between the eastern and western faces of a single dune in the daylight. Every feature of each image is spotlit as a survivor of the compositional cull, and the result is an overwhelmingly sensitive set of images in which – for Luca – “ at once everything is simple, and nothing stands in-between far away things.”

Life is beautiful and strange at the same time, and Luca seems to encapsulate this opposition in the juxtaposition between the warm shades of orange and blue, and the cold tones of purple and indigo. His choice of space tends towards sites of historical or spiritual value, and focuses on expressing the emotions that such spaces trigger. LS IX takes an individual-oriented approach to a universal theme: the man in solitude, estranged, lonely, and unreachable, dropped into the fertility of the warm-hued hills, dropped into a timeless body of sand that “reflects the color of millions past suns”.

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