C41 Questions On with Marco Pietracupa: The Contemporary Fashion Photography

Questions On is the video interview format created by C41. Three are the ‘simple’ questions asked initially to the three curators, and later to the 14 photographers, who created and took part in the contemporary photography exhibition.

The seventh episode is with Marco PietracupaMarco Pietracupa, was born in Brixen ( Sudtirol-Italy) and moved to Milan at the beginning of the nineties to turn his passion into a profession. After having attended the Italian Institute of Photography he started to publish his works in the art, fashion and portraits fields.

You can watch it on the C41 YouTube channel and also read it below.

1.Over the years, how has the mentality of fashion photography changed?

The mentality of fashion photography has changed because the mind has changed, above all. Before the main mind of a fashion shoot was the photographer, almost always, now it has changed in the sense that the mind is that of the client and the stylist and not so much the photographer, that is, let’s say that once the photographer had a certain type I wouldn’t say power, but power over the image, he was chosen because he had a certain type of style and his style was required and he was the one who directed and did everything, he even chose clothes and everything else. Now this whole thing is gone because the market is more commercial because various things have changed and let’s say that the thinking mind has moved more towards the stylist and the client because there is no longer this need to have a particular image , strong, a connoted image but it is more important to sell the dress so everything is concentrated a little more on the sale of the dress, on showing the dress well and that other part is left aside a bit, precisely the style of the photographer, the creativity of the photographer, and then it also depends on the sector no, because I talk more about magazines at the moment, even if the beautiful creative magazines, after the photographer can express himself more freely they exist are usually the high ones we know it is useless that I tell it but if you want to know from me what I think of the mentality of how it is how it has changed yes it is the mentality in the course of fashion photography, in my opinion the mentality in the approach of how to photograph the ves has changed titi, less creative, but more commercial. In the sense that it is more commercial, I mean that there is more attention to clothes especially and less attention to having a particular image, characterized by a specific style. I would say that this is the point, the change. The mentality has changed a bit because the market has changed, the needs, the customers have a certain economic power, so they can have their say, the stylist who has more sensitivity towards clothes often more than the photographer and obviously since she is more important to show the dress. So the photographer is often one who performs the needs of others and can no longer be completely free and make his own contribution with his own style, with his image as it once was, I think this is the most change of mentality, yes of course that there is also the mind is no longer as initially said more of the photographer or less that of the photographer and more that of the client and the stylist who has acquired more power. And there obviously there is a quite strong change, the photographer sees the image tries to create an image, then if it depends on which photographer you are talking about there is the creative photographer who has his own style who has his own image and who he creates things and then there is the sea photographer more who executes or in short, let’s say as I said at the beginning that in recent years it often comes as saying a more neutral photographer is chosen, so you can do it in quotation marks. Let’s say in more neutral quotes that it doesn’t have a too precise style because that way something can be done. Apart from this, as mentioned, the way the world and things have changed and it is right that it changes.

2.What makes photography contemporary art is perhaps the mix of languages, it is the lack of boundaries between one tool and another and the dialogue between different media. But when does photography really become contemporary art?

This sounds a little strange to me. I would say that fashion photography can never become contemporary art, that is, art is contemporary art and fashion photography is fashion photography in my opinion, I separate them are two different things. Fashion photography can become contemporary fashion photography, but not contemporary art because the factor of a product is always involved, that is, you photograph a product to sell it, then even if you photograph it in a new and different contemporary way. particular, however, is always behind the fact of a product and a sale. Contemporary art or art, in general, is something different in my opinion, it is more an expression of yours that comes from you and your way of thinking in general. In short, I have to explain it myself. On the other hand, when you do fashion, the product is always an article in the middle, that is, if I take something that needs to be sold for which not. I would say that the art that fashion photography cannot become contemporary art. What makes fashion photography become, let’s talk about contemporary fashion, they are not in a mix of various techniques but it is more the feeling, in my opinion, it does not depend on the technique from the mixtures that one does, techniques that add, it is precisely the feeling, contemporary is appropriate to the times a photograph appropriate to the times that speaks contemporary, which can be contemporary art, contemporary photography, contemporary fashion photographs, however, we always talk about feeling, mood, of what you express more than the techniques then obviously the techniques are added they facilitate contemporaneity because digital today using it for digital for what it is, in short, it makes it more contemporary, obviously, that of various techniques that help to be more contemporary, but in essence, there is always the feeling that there is behind that you are speaking a language appropriate to the times.

3.One of the fastest sectors is slowing down, aesthetics is changing just as beauty standards are changing. What do you think is the future of fashion photography?

The future is now, a new cycle of fashion photography is just starting which, as mentioned, the first question is this thing about the influencer photographer, he is no longer the photographer, he still exists for some things, but if we always talk about fashion photography more mass commercial, mainstream will be more and more these photographers, given that the social network works a lot the fact that the photographer but also all the stylist or the make-up artist choose photographers who have more followers because in this way they go to talk to a wider audience (cut). So I think that the future is the present and a little bit this thing here and in the next few years maybe it will take more and more foot that it has already taken hold so it will be increasingly important to take care of a more social part. In reality, perhaps among these many are not even photographers, as we understand them or I mean them that maybe photographically they are quite simple not to say trivial, but what the client wants is to talk to as many people as possible to get the product. to as many people as possible and in this way obviously with Social Networks the more followers you have, the more your product reaches more people. I don’t know how useful this can be, I don’t know. Maybe every product needs the right clientele, so don’t just shoot the whole crowd as many of those people are not even interested so this thing in my opinion needs to be revised a bit. But at the moment I think this thing works quite well, they are all pretty convinced.

In my opinion, fashion photography will have two, two or three channels, there is the channel, the one a little more artistic, that is, more expressive and stronger, as an image we call contemporary photography which resembles or is ever closer to a photograph contemporary art and then there will be this thing that works more for the mass more sales, more commercial where fashion photography moves more on the influencer, and there photography, obviously it is affected photographically but I some I also find these simple photos funny and interesting. Faster, simpler photographs. Yes I would say that fashion photography will split up enough in these two in these two channels. There will be three types of fashion photography, which is not bad.


Featuring: Marco Pietracupa @marcopietracupa 

Curated by Alice De Santis, Luca A. Caizzi
Editor: Elena Ottavi

Time to read
8 min
Words by
Published on
14 September 2020
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