Street Photos Look Like Paintings in 'Urban Melodies'

Italian photographer Alessio Trerotoli plays with photographic superimposition to create abstract, fragmented city scenes.

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Jan 20 2016, 7:15pm

Moulin Rouge (Paris). Courtesy of the artist.

If a city could be seen in a single image over time, it would become an abstract canvas of fragments, blurs, repetition, asymmetrical movement, light and other visual elements. Italian photographer Alessio Trerotoli doesn’t work such long timeframes in Urban Melodies, but he does play with superimposition to create metropolitan abstractions.

“With this project I'm trying to create, by superimposing different pictures, a sort of abstract representation of urban landscapes and contemporary life from the modern metropolis like New York, Rome, Paris, Berlin and many others,” Trerotoli tells The Creators Project. “I use four or five different pictures of the same place, the same subject, to create every image. So everything is duplicated—lights and subjects multiply and build a new vision of urban life.”

Montmartre (Paris). Courtesy of the artist

Trerotoli does this with a simple setup—a Canon camera and Photoshop. Most of the work comes in finding an interesting scene while walking through a city. As he puts it, he is always on the lookout for a new “Urban Melody,” as he calls these works.

Via della Cuccagna (Roma). Courtesy of the artist

“Superimposing photos is an art that needs creativity, fantasy, curiosity and, most of all, lots of patience—it’s like a puzzle, an enigma to solve,” Trerotoli says. “A solution exists, the right combination exists, but we have to find it. There are no preset rules, only the rules that we decide to impose.”

Holocaust Memorial (Berlin). Courtesy of the artist

Trerotoli says that the work in the Urban Melodies series owes a lot to Turkish photographer Jak Baruh. Three years ago, Trerotoli was in a museum in Istanbul where he saw Baruh’s work.

Crossroads (Roma). Courtesy of the artist

“Outside the exhibition I was really inspired [and] motivated to create something like that, to work with multiple layers,” he says. “I wrote a note on my notebook and I left there with that idea. Some weeks later I began a project with superimposed images. It was the spark, the beginning of my series Urban Melodies, where I tried to add my style and my sensibility.”

Rainy Day (Roma). Courtesy of the artist

Click here to see more of Alessio Trerotoli’s work.

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