James Lingwood, curator of the exhibition Luigi Ghirri. The Map and the Territory (Museo Reina Sofía 26 September 2018 – 7 January 2019), will lead a guided visit to the exhibit just before the opening with the aim of introducing the main ideas supporting Ghirri’s artistic practice. Ghirri is a key author for understanding postmodern photography and some of its fundamental theses, such as the blurring of reality with fiction and the extreme codification of representation in today’s world.
In 1973 Ghirri gave up his job as a draughtsman to fully devote himself to photography. Since then, he used photography to explore the industrialised Italy of the 1970s as a reflection of different tendencies, such as the saturation of kitsch and fast-moving consumer goods; the ubiquity of advertising signs and images; the clash between the natural and the artificial; or the tensions between history and its parodic and simulated versions. Through these topics, which are connected in the exhibit design by combining several photographic series, Ghirri reflects on the language of photography and the construction of contemporary identities.
James Lingwood is Co-Director with Michael Morris of Artangel, an institution through which he has produced sculptural works by Rachel Whiteread, Francis Alÿs and Cristina Iglesias, among others, as well as film installations by the likes of Yael Bartana, Douglas Gordon and Steve McQueen. He has also curated a number of exhibitions, including major survey exhibitions with Bernd & Hila Becher, Vija Celmins, Susan Hiller and Juan Muñoz. He is a Trustee of The Art Fund and The Paul Hamlyn Foundation and is an advisor to the Oslo Biennale, the London Design Festival and Fondazione Ratti in Como.