Cascina Cuccagna‘s current exhibition “Milano Sud. Ritratti di Fabbriche” is Giuseppe Corbetta’s homage to Gabriele Basilico’s famous photographic work carried out between 1978 and 1980. Gabriele Basilico visited and documented the changing industrial landscape in the southern areas of Milan; now, 35 years later, Giuseppe Corbetta goes back to these same places and replicates Basilico’s shot in an aim to reflect the changes undergone by these areas.
“Milano Sud. Ritratti di fabbriche 35 anni dopo”
13 January – 29 January, 2017
Via Cuccagna, 2/4, Milano
Cascina Cuccagna itself is an example of repurposed architecture. Finally open in 2012, the Cascina Cuccagna is one of the former farmhouses located not far from the center of Milan, which was restored to its original state by a popular citizens initiative to host a cultural and mixed uses center.
In his work “Milano Ritratti di Fabbriche” (1978-80) Gabriele Basilico, one of the most outstanding Italian figures in the field of architecture and landscape photography, carried out a systematic research of the industrial areas of Milan. Besides their artistic values, the importance of these pictures lies on documenting a moment of great changes in landscape, characterized by the shift from maximum expansion of industrialized economy to a post-industrial phase, “the last portrait of a working-class city, that is about to change its identity”.
Between 2010 and 2016 the photographer Giuseppe Corbetta retraced Basilico’s footsteps. He went back to the same places to document the regeneration, the deterioration, the demolition and the reuse of the former industrial factories in Milan during the last 35 years.
Giuseppe Corbetta looked at the factories with the point of view of Gabiele Basilico, replicating the same shooting point, using the same camera lenses, the same lights, shadows and weather conditions with the aim to obtain the same shoot.
The significance of repeating the same research today is to record the current state of the art of Milano ex-industrial areas which, because of great contemporary international changes (such as the economic crisis, new economies and new dramatic migration flows) is now changing once again into something else.