Chelsea Waterside ArtSpace has great pleasure in presenting
work by photographer Federico Monticone.
His four upcoming photographic displays will be shown across 2020.
"Growing up in a small town, surrounded by the Alps in the North-West of Italy, I have always felt a strong connection with nature. Studying biology and specialising in zoology was almost a natural consequence of this upbringing and it was during this time at university that I developed my passion for photography, as a way to keep a record of the beautiful places and animals I encountered during my studies.
As a result, I started my professional journey in photography freelancing as a photographer in academic field research across Italy, collaborating with Turin Natural History Museum, Turin University's department of biology, London Zoological Society and a few other local non-profit organisations for nature conservation.
At the beginning my approach to photography was mainly scientific and educational; as I grew as a self-taught photographer over the years, I became more comfortable with my artistic side and I started to be more daring with my style, pushing my boundaries further and putting my feelings and emotions into the pictures I was taking. I then widened my portfolio by taking an interest in anthropological and travel photography travelling in different countries across the world, both on assignments and on personal projects.
Regardless of the project I'm working on, I always maintain a strong dedication to the conservation of the natural world and man’s heritage and traditions.
I have had photographs published in wildlife educational guides, books and travel magazines, and my photos taken in Ecuador during two months reportage have been displayed in an exposition in conjunction with the Anthropology Department of the University of Turin and are currently displayed in exhibitions across Ecuador.
I have won awards both in local competitions as well as in international contests, such as Oasis Photo Contest and The Telegraph Outdoor and Adventure Show to mention a few.
When I'm not out in the wild, hiking and taking pictures, I also run photography and post production workshops between Italy and the UK and I occasionally work as a portrait, estate and wedding photographer."
Federico also conducts workshops and takes commissions – these can be held at his home in his studio, or he is happy to work at a client’s house or chosen location. His workshops cover both basic and advanced photographic techniques or post production and can be on a one-to-one basis or small groups.
Kedi (Turkish for cat)
27th January – 28th February 2020
For centuries Istanbul has been one of the most important commercial ports of the Mediterranean Sea. It is a well known fact that where there are boats, there are rats, and where there are rats, you find cats. Adding to this, in Islamic culture, the cat is a well respected animal, for instance, legend has it that a cat saved the Prophet from a venomous snake. Therefore, it becomes easy to understand why street cats have always been an integral part of the landscape and daily life of the people living in this metropolis.
The cats’ presence is so strong that you cannot explain or describe the spirit and soul of Istanbul without mentioning the feline population that for centuries has been walking the city streets interacting with humans.
These cats are not domesticated as they don’t belong to anyone; at the same time they are not strays, because everybody in the city looks after them leaving some food and water, a shelter for the cold months and taking them to the vet if needed, with the costs shared amongst the locals.
For this project, I spent 10 days walking alone around the city, from the main landmarks to the tiniest, most hidden streets, documenting with my photos how humans and felines not only coexist, but have reached a perfectly harmonious equilibrium, not easy to imagine in any other city.
9th February – 28th February 2020
Since the beginning of time flowers have always been part of our lives.
On the one hand, they had a huge impact on our culture; their sensuality and transient beauty have always charmed us and inspired poets, painters and artists of all kinds. On the other hand, their intrinsic properties have always been crucial in medicinal developments as well as being essential ingredients in cosmetic products.
As a biologist, I’m amazed by the fact that flowers exist for more than just beauty and fragrance, they are also small chemical factories necessary for life on our planet as we know it and for sustenance for some of our most important ecosystems.
As a photographer, I have always been fascinated by flowers and the endless possibilities they offer to capture colours, shapes and details. No matter if it is a cultivated species taken in my studio or a wild one found in a remote place during one of my walks, I always find myself spending hours with my camera trying to capture a flower's essence.
This project is a collection of my attempts over the years to portray the ephemeral beauty of this fascinating botanical realm.
Postcards from Nature
14th June until 26th August
This collection, as the title suggests, presents a series of images gathered while drifting around the world, all born from my desire to translate into photographs the beauty, harmony and fragility of nature.
I have captured nature’s majesty on different levels, from a macro shot of a bunch of leaves on your doorstep to a wide angle forsaken landscape.
Viewers are guided through the lens to linger on the natural world that too often appears distant, almost separated from our frantic lives but that has been accompanying us since the beginning of time.
I wish for these images to be an inspiration to help viewers reconnect to this magical world.
28th August until further notice
Some of the views and sceneries that I had the privilege of experiencing have reminded me so much of paintings, that on occasions I wish I could have switched the camera for a paintbrush and canvas, but unfortunately I am terrible at drawing, let alone paint.
So this project started almost like a challenging joke with myself: I have looked at the photos I have taken in the last 6 years and selected a few that I felt would be perfect for this project, and that after some daring experimenting with style, printing process and paper would look as if they were 'almost painted'.
Furthermore, some of these photos were taken with this aim, so I played around with the camera settings in order to use the actual camera as if it was my paintbrush.
I must thank the wind, the adverse weather conditions, the tripod forgotten at home and the unusual poses of animals, because they were all a great help in creating an 'almost painted' result.
24th November until further notice
Travelling - it leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller’ (Ibn Battuta)
I love travelling, regardless of the destination, whether it’s a faraway country or closer to home. Every trip I take is a chance for me to discover new places, people and cultures; but this is just the tip of the iceberg, because every trip is a journey that allows me to discover myself: when you are out of your comfort zone and away from your daily routine, is when you really have a chance to clear your mind and see yourself in a new light.
The photos on display are images of countries that I have visited and that hold a special place in my heart; my hope is that the viewers will appreciate the beauty of the locations as well as feel in some way the inspiration I felt.
I am not a writer, but photos are my way to tell a story’.