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100 Movie Posters

The Guardian

Bold and bored: the 1960s American dream – in pictures

Fashion students, flashing signage and queuing punters make up peripatetic Italian photographer Mario Carnicelli’s take on the US

In 1966, budding Italian photographer Mario Carnicelli won a scholarship to photograph the United States. A new publication documents his discoveries, as he travelled across the country, taking in cities from Chicago and Buffalo to San Francisco, and New York. American Voyage by Mario Carnicelli is published by Reel Art Press.

Carnicelli was as fascinated by the country’s diversity, individuality and pursuit of happiness …

… as he was by the loneliness and rootlessness he observed in its people.

Rediscovered after 50 years, this is the first time this body of photographic work has been published.

The details that caught the Italian photographer’s eye – from shopfront signage to hairdos and queueing habits – belie the outsider’s perspective with which he approached his subject.

American Voyage sees a European artist discovering what comprised daily life across the pond in the 60s.

Throughout his career, Carnicelli documented political events, social movements, and public gatherings.

People remained at the core of Carnicelli’s work, as he went on to work for national newspapers and magazines.

Carnicelli’s humanist approach was influenced by photographers including Lewis Hine and the celebrated Farm Security Administration photography programme, which documented rural life and poverty in the 1930s and 1940s.

The new book coincides with an exhibition of the photographer’s work at David Hill Gallery, London, until 2 June.

04 May, 2018 Editorial