Giorgio Sommer (Frankfurt am Main, 1834-Naples, 1914) is one of the greatest protagonists of the first period of the history of photography in Italy. The volume, based on a long and rigorous research, presents a vast and yet unpublished anthology of the photographer’s works of every size: large, medium, stereoscopic, album, carte de visite. The imagines (representing views, squares, streets, monuments, moments of urban life) are ordered according to the 19th century route usually followed by the travelers of the Grand Tour in Italy: Genoa, Pisa, Florence, Rome and its surroundings (Tivoli), Naples and its surroundings (Vesuvius, Ercolano, Pompeii, Baja, Caserta, Sorrento, Maddaloni, Ischia, Capri, Amalfi, Ravello, Cava dei Tirreni, Paestum), Messina, Cefalù, Palermo, Monreale, Segesta, Selinunte, Agrigento, Syracuse, Catania, Nicolosi, Aci Castello, Taormina, Bologna, Venice, Verona, Milan, Turin, Maggiore Lake and the Lake of Como.
Naples and Palermo were of great interest for Giorgio Sommer, because they were the two “cities-world”: polymorph, difficult to define, the result of centuries of exchanges and crossings of different cultures that continuously appear in present times.
In the 1860’s Sommer’s photographic atelier was the first, with Robert Rive’s one, to have depicted thanks to its photographic campaigns, the most important places, from a touristic point of view, of the newly born nation, contributing to the myth of Bell’Italia by means of producing also peculiar contributions.PDF format