Born in Catania in 1950, Rossella Pezzino de Geronimo has loved photography since she first began in play as a child, and has cultivated her passion all her life. She attended the European Photography Institute and began working with photography studios in Brera when still very young, working with Lionel Pasquon, among others.
She is now a highly successful visual artist, and has identified photography and holography as the forms of expression best suited to her need to penetrate the soul of things and explore the meanders of their essence. Her work first began as a record of her travels in Japan, Ethiopia, India and Burma.
Instinctive and curious, she has produced a significant repertoire exploring Eastern cultural identities through costumes, ethnic groups and culinary traditions, investigating all aspects of everyday life.
Frammenti d’identità (Fragments of Identity) and Donne di Birmania (Women of Burma) are among the artist’s earliest photo collections, capturing the everyday lives of local populations through her lens.
Her purified, filtered lens focuses on the eyes of women, seniors and children, expressive of their life experience. Her work goes well beyond the simplistic concept of “photo reporting”, driven by a desire to uncover the depths of the intimate secrets hidden in the faces she meets and immortalises with her lens.
The artist succeeds admirably in putting the details together to reconstruct a voyage into the person’s soul and intimate identify, returning it directly to the viewer.
While the essential theme of her work remained unchanged, she then moved on from Portraits of the Soul to Landscapes of the Soul.
Thus Rossella began her study of the four elements: fire, water, earth and air, through extreme voyages to the four corners of the earth. Her photographs begin with a microscopic vision and enlarge isolated details, elements of nature broken down and taken out of context to find a path to the abstract and metaphysical.
In Alchimie lineari (Linear Alchemies), the photographer focuses on deserts and expanses of ice, rocky landscapes and mountainous horizons, seen in terms of the horizontal sedimentation of forms and colours aimed at achieving a fusion and generating fantasmagoric new visions. A series of works entitled “Cruel Colours” represents the element fire, while “Linear Alchemies” symbolises water, “Il Respiro del Cielo” (“Breath of Heaven”) focuses on earth and “Le Radici dell’Aria” (“The Roots of the Air”) is inspired by air. These works are the product of a lengthy creative process that begins with the need to overcome pain and suffering, subliming them in study directed toward the goal of grasping the elements leading us to beauty, simplicity and purity.
To achieve this result, the photographer works by subtraction, purging her images of all recognisable references so as to place them in a timeless dimension. This operation allows her to shift the focus to the subject itself, realistically portrayed in terms of the pure forms of which it is composed: a process that produces a balance, both in photographic composition and in the photographer’s own interior equilibrium.
In 2012 Rossella began to work with holography, a further field of study in which she soon demonstrated great mastery of technique, obtaining truly admirable results. Her holographic works represent imagery and scenarios evoking grandiose transformations of the earth. In her holograms, the motion of water, air, fire and earth is accompanied by the whirlwind, spiralling movement of the images themselves.
In these productions too, the artist conducts a process of inner analysis aimed at eliminating the pain of the ego through projection of three-dimensional images floating in the air. The artist from Catania demonstrates a technical skill that is more than mere artistic virtuosity, signifying study of the tools of her art, at the service of in-depth study of personality.