This weekend Giulio Merli an iPhoneographer from Italy is set to launch his solo exhibition of Hipstamatic prints. Giulio wanted me to just help get the word out about the show, but I wanted to do a bit more, so I asked him to participate in our Q&A session here on iPhoneogenic so you the readers could get to know the artist behind the exhibition. His work is very versatile, ranging form architecture to abstract visuals.
EC: Talk to us about your Hipsatmatic exhibition which is set to open in just a few days. How long has the show been in the works? How where you able get the guys at Syntetich Corp (the developers of Hipstamatic) to help sponsor/promote the show? The dimensions of the prints and so on?
GM: The show was born in the wave of “An Exhibition for Hipstamatic” held in January at the Orange Dot Gallery in London, where 5 shoots of mine were displayed, since the response (of both public and critics) was good, I decided to try and jump at a solo project here in Italy. My relationship with the guys at Syntetich Corp started when a friend of mine from Miami, Tanya Diaz, suggested their community director, Mario Estrada, should have a look at my Tumblr page. Mario was really kind and asked me if I’d like to participate in “Adventures in Hipstaland,” from there to get their support for my own exhibition the step was short.
The exhibition will feature 16 Hipstamatics 25×25 cm, printed on Hahnemuhle’s Monet canvas 410 grams.
It will be held at “2:1-Two to One“ , a street-wear shop in Piacenza, from March 19th to April 19th.
EC: Where are you from? Tell me about yourself?
GM: I’m from Piacenza, a small city in northern Italy (just halfway between Milan and Bologna). I’m a social worker and I spend most of my time working with homeless people and refugees.
EC: How did you get into iPhoneography?
GM: I got my first iPhone in October 2010 (an iPhone 4) and right from the first day I started taking pictures with Hipstamatic.
Before that, however, I’d been taking photographs with toy, film, and digital cameras for about five years.
I really love experimenting with films and DIY developing!
EC: Can you recall the first iPhoto you took that made you go WOW, I really got something here!?
GM: Yes, I was in Tuscany, in the Appennini, being a fan of “ghost towns” and weird places I was there to visit an old ship-shaped abandoned dance hall, the shot I took of that ship in the middle of meadowland with the Salvador Dalì Hipstamatic lens came out really weird, ‘cause it looks like a painting, and I can say it has brought me luck!
EC: How has social media such as Twitter helped or hinder the way you choose to share your work with others?
GM: In Italy, Twitter is not what you would call a mass social network, I use it though, along with Facebook, Tumblr and Flickr. My shots feature in all these social networks, while in my website I only put my favorites. All these social networks have greatly influenced the way I display my work. All my photo are online and downloadable, but at the same time I like the idea of organizing a fine-art print exhibition.
EC: What does iPhoneography mean to you?
GM: I really love using the iPhone as a camera because it is small, so I can always carry it with me, it has good definition at the same time. Apart from this it is just a tool like any other camera.
EC: Do you have any formal training regarding traditional photography?
GM: No, I did not have such a chance, my passion grew watching my elder brother taking photos. Certainly, joining the Flickr community has helped a lot.
EC: What about your hometown is so special that it makes you what to capture it through your iPhone?
GM: I like taking photographs of dull or ordinary things trying to see them through a different perspective, with the aim of making them interesting…my hometown is the perfect ground for that :-)
EC: Who or what are your artistic influences?
GM: My influences are many, ranging from unknown Flickr photographers to internationally recognized artists (to quote a few Italians, Berengo-Gardin, Basilico, Fontana, Pellegrin).
EC: What has been the some of the challenges of using the iPhone as a camera?
GM: I think that it’s quite difficult having good shots in low light… too many shakes and really blurred results :-)
EC: Has your work been published before, if so, where? Did you ever expect your work to be noticed by the iPhoneography community?
GM: Some of my photos have been published by Knox Bronson’s Pixels at an exhibition,
EC: What has been the most surprising or most predictable reaction from people to your iPhotographs?
GM: It is too early to say…I haven’t had the chance to collect many opinions yet.
EC: What’s in your iPhone camera bag? What app(s) do you currently use the most often?
GM: I almost exclusively only use Hipstamatic. At the moment I’m having a lot of fun with SeeThis as well.
EC: What other thoughts would you like to share?
GM: Well, it was A really hard job to reply to this Q&A, mostly because of my rusty English…anyway thanks for your interest in my work!
Thank you Giulio for participating in this feature here on iPhoneogenic, the iPhoneogenic Facebook Page, and on Twitter @iPhone0genic. I’m pleased and very honored to have you on my blog.
For more on Giulio check out these links:
All images shown here are copyrighted property of the artist, please contact Giulio Merli for copyright privileges.