The historic Wine Doors of Florence are the subject of a unique photography exhibition in Florence.
The exhibition OBIETTIVO BUCHETTE: Photographing the WIne Doors of Florence features work by photographers Robbin Gheesling and Andrew Barrow MA ARPS and will open 9 November 2019 in the space of Caffè Guido Guidi at the Teatro della Pergola, Florence at 17:30.
The exhibition runs until 10 January 2020.
The wine doors are small portals that allowed the noble landowners of Tuscany to sell their wines within the city walls directly to the public. Their use spans the Medici period of the 16th century until the early years of the 20th. About 260 have been documented while many have been lost to development.
Ms. Gheesling began photographing and researching the wine doors in 2014 while completing her master’s degree in Italian at Middlebury College Florence. She photographs the doors with a documentary street art approach, placing the doors firmly in the present with the city’s inhabitants – and their influence – playing a pivotal role in her vision.
During my first shoot, I waited for people to leave the frame. I then realized how many people were ignoring them; walking by, parking their bikes and work carts (ape) in front of them. That apathy became the subject.
Mr. Barrow joined the project in 2018 utilising the subject for his master’s degree in photography at Falmouth University. Expanding on this work, he takes a fine art and conceptual approach. He says of the project:
I find it fascinating how these little historical remnants have survived in the face of gas meter cupboards, air conditioning ducts, drainage pipes and so on. And how they have been repurposed as letterboxes, restaurant menu shelves and a canvas for street art. It is these modern trappings that make them such an interesting photographic subject.
Available for purchase and special order, Ms. Gheesling will offer prints and examples of her handmade photobooks while Mr. Barrow will offer a limited edition portfolio box and prints. Both artists will be in attendance.
The event is organised by the local Wine Doors cultural association, Buchette Del Vino.
Ms. Gheesling is sponsored by Taste Florence Food Tours.