Scanno, a small town for great photographers

“Scanno reminded me of a fairy tale village, full of sun, with black silhouettes. I tried to burn the details out to erase everything that may have been documentary-like, because I thought I could find more poetry in it. I never considered doing realism with Scanno […] but only things, even not exceptional ones, that could reflect my personal mood at the moment”.

The quote is by Mario Giacomelli (1925-2000) who with Renzo Tortelli immortalized various glimpses of the small town in Abruzzo in 1957.

Giacomelli and Tortelli were following in the footsteps of other masters of photography who had made Scanno a must-see stop on their Grand Tour in search of images. Hilde Lotz-Bauer (1907-1999) had visited in the 1930s, and in 1951 Henri Cartier-Bresson had walked around these narrow streets, still unscathed by modernity, looking “nervous… anxious to capture in a single image the essence” of every scene he found himself in front of.

In the following years, the charming village in the province of L’Aquila would attract many other important artists, including Gianni Berengo Gardin, Piergiorgio Branzi, Ferdinando Scianna, and Pepi Merisio. Giacomelli himself returned to Scanno 1959.

Here is a selection of the beautiful photographs they took.

Photos via:
©Pepi Merisio www.pepimerisio.it
© Gianni Berengo Gardin
© Piergiorgio Branzi
© Mario Giacomelli
© Ferdinando Scianna
© Renzo Tortelli
© Henri Cartier-Bresson

Scanno, Hilde Lotz-Bauer, 1930

Hilde Lotz-Bauer, 1930

Scanno, Henri Cartier-Bresson, 1951

Henri Cartier-Bresson, 1951

Scanno, Henri Cartier-Bresson, 1951

Henri Cartier-Bresson, 1951

Scanno, Henri Cartier-Bresson, 1951

Henri Cartier-Bresson, 1951

Scanno, Henri Cartier-Bresson, 1951

Henri Cartier-Bresson, 1951

Scanno, Piergiorgio Branzi, 1955

Piergiorgio Branzi, 1955

Scanno, Mario Giacomelli, 1957-59

Mario Giacomelli, 1957-59

Scanno, Mario Giacomelli, 1957-59

Mario Giacomelli, 1957-59

Scanno, Mario Giacomelli, 1957-59

Mario Giacomelli, 1957-59

Scanno, Mario Giacomelli, 1957-59

Mario Giacomelli, 1957-59

Scanno, Renzo Tortelli, 1957-59

Renzo Tortelli, 1957-59

Scanno, Renzo Tortelli, 1957-59

Renzo Tortelli, 1957-59

Scanno, Renzo Tortelli, 1957-59

Renzo Tortelli, 1957-59

Scanno, Renzo Tortelli, 1957-59

Renzo Tortelli, 1957-59

Scanno, Pepi Merisio, 1969

Pepi Merisio, 1969

Scanno, Pepi Merisio, 1969

Pepi Merisio, 1969

Scanno, Gianni Berengo Gardin, 1987

Gianni Berengo Gardin, 1987

Scanno, Gianni Berengo Gardin, 1987

Gianni Berengo Gardin, 1987

Scanno, Gianni Berengo Gardin, 1987

Gianni Berengo Gardin, 1987

Scanno, Gianni Berengo Gardin, 1987

Gianni Berengo Gardin, 1987

Scanno, Ferdinando Scianna, 1999

Ferdinando Scianna, 1999

Scanno, Ferdinando Scianna, 1999

Ferdinando Scianna, 1999

Scanno, Ferdinando Scianna, 1999

Ferdinando Scianna, 1999

Scanno, a small town for great photographers

Scanno (Aq)

WEEKLY POSTCARD

Most Read

The Great War Museum: history at high altitude

Author: Barbara PalladinoTranslation by Michelle NebioloOn the top of the Marmolada, at 3,000 meters of altitude, you’ll find the Marmolada Great War...

Palazzo Giordano Apostoli: neo-gothic inspiration

Palazzo Giordano Apostoli is located in Sassari’s central Piazza d’Italia. It was built by will of Giuseppe Giordano Apostoli in 1877, in...

Move To The Top takes you to the roof of the Dolomites

Author: Barbara PalladinoTranslation by Michelle Nebiolo On 4 July 2020, the cableway to Malga Ciapèla will re-open. Its short,...

Tenute La Montina, the realm of Franciacorta

Author: Barbara PalladinoTranslation by Michelle NebioloTenute La Montina is located in Monticelli Brusati (BS), in the north-east of Franciacorta, next to an ample...