Viewing the silver torsos photographed by Italian photographer Guido Argentini can feel like sneaking into a secret. The seductive statues are frozen in their fluidity, cast in their eroticism for eternity, and Argentini's other series have the same powerfully silent motion. The female form is part of the landscape, private erotic moments are voyeuristically captured in boudoirs, perfect hands and lips are quietly pulsing. We spoke with Argentini about the evolution of his female form.
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Sez G: There's a subtle peacefulness that exudes from your models, as if you always capture them in quiet, fluid motion. How do you find this "space" in your models? How many shots do you usually take to get that perfect one?
Guido Argentini: I always try to have good "chemistry" with my models. If that is missing, the shoot will not be as good… I usually shoot very little film.
Sez G: You have several stunning black & white shots of models in a silver cast-like paint. Tell me about the concept, preparation and process of creating these shots.
Guido Argentini: Silver paint was a way to dehumanize the models, making them like statues instead of women. Now I'm doing a completely different project.
Sez G: You shoot a lot of fashion. What can we find in your personal work that we don't see in your fashion shoots? What about in your magazine shoots?
Guido Argentini: The fashion work is something I love and would love to do more often. The problem is that fashion is tied to a time period. Nudes are timeless.
Sez G: Do you enjoy fashion design?
Guido Argentini: Yes I do, but I'm not "crazy" for fashion.
Sez G: You grew up in Florence and moved to LA in your mid-twenties, which I guess explains both your masterful artistic eye and celebration of perfection in the female form. What's your artistic background, and how has it evolved in Los Angeles?
Guido Argentini: Florence is the center of the Renaissance, and this gives you a "natural artistic background." In Florence "your breath is always full of art." The USA gave me new stimulation because it is such a different country than anywhere in Europe. Changes are always good. I'm looking forward of doing some work in Asia.
Sez G: Your black & white photos are smooth. Your models look like perfect marble. Your color photos are more lifelike and momentary. Which do you prefer to shoot in, and how do you decide which a photo should be in?
Guido Argentini: I like both, black & white and color. Color is more difficult and challenging. Recently, I shoot 90% in color. One of my next two books will be totally in color, no black & white.
Sez G: Your first book, Silvereye, primarily featured the artistic female form in studio settings. Your recent book, Private Rooms, captures more natural, highly sexual woman in one moment of a seemingly erotic story. What led you from one focus to the other?
Guido Argentini: It's just a natural development in my vision of women. Reflections, my new book has as a subject women and their reflection.
Sez G: You've shot many celebrities, from Gore Vidal to Debbie Gibson. What's your approach to shooting celebrity portraits?
Guido Argentini: Celebrities are always interesting and challenging. I'd like to do more of this type of shoot. Unfortunately, they never give you the same freedom you have shooting models.
Sez G: What's next for you?
Guido Argentini: I'm working on two books at the same time. One will be nudes, landscapes and still life; the other is nudes in the city.
To learn more about Guido Argentini visit GuidoArgentini.com.com.
Guido Argentini - by Sez G.