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The City Is a Novel Exhibition Is Photographer’s Tribute to Metropolises

Alexey Titarenko's photos of New York, Venice and St. Petersburg opens at Italy's Spazio Damiani.

Photography By

Dark and moody, cities can often feel like characters in their own right.

That’s the philosophy of photographer Alexey Titarenko, whose work will be displayed in a new exhibition called The City is a Novel, opening at the Spazio Damiani in Bologna, Italy on May 12.

Titarenko snaps photos in Venice, New York and St. Petersburg. About 20 prints are included in the show.

The artist said in a statement that his intention is to let the cities he photographs “speak” for themselves by playing with aperture and exposure time. The end result are blurred images of people moving against static urban backdrops, while various light settings give the photos a dreamy haze-like effect.

Images are printed in black and white and on gelatin paper. Titarenko added silver and sepia toners as the final layer to heighten the contrast between black and white shadows. The final images are as mysterious as they are captivating.

The St. Petersburg native selected the three locations in the show both because of his fondness for the cities, but also because of the unique landscape in each place: St. Petersburg is romantic, Venice is unique with waterfront streets and New York City is modern.

The complete series has also been printed in a book by the same name, published by Damiani, and includes additional photos from Havana.

(Alexey Titarenko/The City is a Novel, Published by Damiani)
(Alexey Titarenko/The City is a Novel, Published by Damiani)
(Alexey Titarenko/The City is a Novel, Published by Damiani)
(Alexey Titarenko/The City is a Novel, Published by Damiani)
(Alexey Titarenko/The City is a Novel, Published by Damiani)
(Alexey Titarenko/The City is a Novel, Published by Damiani)