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Artcurial to offer fashion photographer Amedeo M. Turello's collection of photographs
Edward Weston, Nude, 1936, Amedeo M. Turello collection (estimate: 6 000 – 8 000 € / 6 700 – 8 900 $)


PARIS.- On the occasion of the FIAC, Artcurial will be selling Amedeo M. Turello’s collection of photographs. The body of work he has assembled reflects his artistic tastes as well as acting as a testimony to the encounters he had during his career as a professional fashion photographer. As a result of his collaborations, he has come into contact with some of the most famous photographers of the twentieth century, some of whom became his friends. It is these photographs that will be offered for sale. Some of his collection has been exhibited previously on more than one occasion, notably in 2013 as part of the event « Nice 2013, a summer for Matisse ». Jean-Jacques Aillagon, event organiser for the occasion, explained «From his experience as a fashion photographer, Amedeo acquired a taste for photography, this relatively new art form which has yet to celebrate its two hundredth anniversary. »

The 200 photos to be sold by Artcurial will celebrate feminine beauty through the works of great masters such as Man Ray, Edouard Boubat, Hans Bellmer, Elliott Erwitt, William Klein, Robert Mapplethorpe, Cindy Sherman, Jean-Loup Sieff and even Jean-Baptiste Mondino… as well as those of young photographers. « Pictures of strong, independent women, proud and radiant, sensitive and fragile… each image is a story in itself, embodying the soul and the true essence of beauty, along with all the contrasts and contradictions that are unique to each individual » said Amedeo M. Turello.

In the preface of the sale catalogue, Jean-Jacques Aillagon portrays both the man and the photographer: From his experience as a fashion photographer, Amedeo knows that one has to look beyond appearances to find truth. He knows, above all, that appearance isn’t as superficial as it seems and that, on closer observation, an unsuspected depth can often be found. Discovering his photographs, I have, to some extent, followed the path he laid. I found myself admiring these women, never completely dressed, never completely naked, as if arriving at a subtle truth. I smiled at these faces, these bodies. I listened to them and I heard them. They told me of life’s fragility and of its strength. Amedeo’s work, his quest dare I say, the result of a clever mix of patience and intelligence, reminded me of Paul Valéry’s wonderful aphorism : “What is most profound in man is his skin”. (…)

Amedeo has both cultivated and given free rein to his fascination with photography, resulting in one of the finest ever collections of female portraits. Over the years he has created this cabinet de curiosité (…). I use this expression ‘cabinet de curiosité’ because of the intimacy it implies which, it seems to me, goes hand in hand with Amedeo’s approach. From Alfred Stieglitz to Cindy Sherman to Henri Cartier-Bresson, the Amedeo collection brings together some beautiful portraits of women with a juxtaposition of tones and contrasts and a freedom rarely encountered. (…)

Amedeo M. Turello’s collection of photographs represents an ode to women. The bringing together of these pictures, all centred round a particular theme, from photographers of different times and nationalities, reflects the changing status of women in society.

It was during the summer of 1999, at the beginning of his career, that Amedeo M. Turello discovered the extraordinary photographic collection of the Dutchman, Bert Hartkamp. On his death, the collection was put up for auction. At the heart of this very large collection another, more intimate group of photographs, on the theme of women, emerged. Turello fell in love with the subject matter and began, little by little, to buy the works.

These initial purchases were followed by a more systematic quest for new pieces that would fit into his collection. He searched galleries, internet sites and photographers. Coming from a family of collectors he knew how to bring a collection to life, how to make the works interact with each other while retaining the different and complementary elements necessary to its cohesion. His theme : « the classical beauty of the eternal muse ».

The journey told by these photographs unfolds at the turn of the twentieth century, in the early days of photography, when woman’s place in society was establishing itself, through to the 21st century. This chronological path, collected over a period of 15 years, contains almost all the major works of the genre : vintage prints, famous icons, contemporary creations, great names…





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