Fortunately, the XIX century is distant and now we know how to coexist in metropolis in a vaguely gentle way. But there are still places, and above all moments of the urban condition, where the space-time coordinates seem to collide, causing a sense of astonishment and uncertainty. Just to set things straight, I am not talking about the so-called non-places, those anonymous and neutral zones, investigated and even celebrated by the art of the 90s.
Francesco Corbetta’s pictures are a sort of hyper-places full of identities and perceptions, which blend and become stratified without consolidating: on the contrary they become paradoxically emptier and lighter while gathering. Places full of colours and life, often swarming with people, sometimes barely coming close to elegant melancholy, and yet radiating a sense of privacy and happiness. Sure, there is also a happy disorientation, as these photographs show: it is simply the other side of disorientation, its possible reverse. It’s not by chance that Corbetta’s pictures emerge from the chromatic reversal of his shots during post-production: an emblematic technique of research of the other face of reality, of its more intense and intimate side, which characterizes the work of this artist.