Franco Zecchin, Palermo 1988. Brotherhood of Holy Crucifix. © Franco Zecchin
Palermo Mon Amour
Apr 17 – Sep 24, 2023
Fondazione Merz
Turin, Italy

Curated by Valentina Greco, the exhibition tells the story of Palermo through images from the 1950s to 1992. A journey that reveals an image-filled Palermo through the research and insights of Enzo Sellerio, Letizia Battaglia, Franco Zecchin, Fabio Sgroi and Lia Pasqualino.

Five photographers, five ways of seeing the world, who have investigated the poetic imagery of Palermo with different feelings, recounting a city in continuous deflagration, and not always recomposed in its contemporary complexity. The subject of a gentle, playful, cultured, anti-rhetorical vision, which is also an acute testimony to the social scene of the 1950s and 1960s, packed with stratified situations of misery and degradation but awaiting a possible civil and economic rebirth, Palermo underwent the further assault of the 1970s, of daily ferocious events, until 1992, the year in which it seemed, once again, that everything could change. In those same years, the city was infiltrated by punk, student demonstrations, occupations, new theatrical productions, and a contradictory political life, and had its resistance in the construction of an imagined situation in a constant state of exception, where writing and recording through images were attentive observers and protagonists.

The project avails itself of the collaboration of the Letizia Battaglia Archive and the Enzo Sellerio Archive.

Forming part of a long-standing dialogue that Fondazione Merz has cultivated with the Sicilian territory, Palermo Mon Amour presents a cross-section of a city with a troubled history, a contradictory city crackling with submerged energies.