Roberto Rossellini, Vittorio De Sica, Federico Fellini. These were the pillars of Italian Neorealism; the auteurs who captured the psyche and desolate conditions of the Italian lower-class from 1944 to 1952, lost in a desperation that poverty begets. Their contemporaries, photographers like Ugo Zovetti, Ferruccio Crovatto, and Bruno Rosso, used their medium in similar fashion. The gritty aesthetic and subject matter draws direct parallels to films like "Open City" and "The Bicycle Thief", giving a real, reactionary sense against fascism and the subsequent socio-political strifes. They unapologetically place the situation in front of you, unmediated and unadorned. The compositions are stunning, expressing the postwar Nihilism with large, unoccupied spaces.
"Mid-Century Postwar Italian Photography" is currently on exhibit at Keith De Lellis Gallery in Manhattan.text by Algernon Felice Jr