My eyes and myself are excited by sinuosity, tenderness, experience. In the snapshot you find these conditions, these are moments in which all these conditions coexist and you fix them. I decided to be a photographer because… I do not know… because I found photography inside me.

Marco Pesaresi

Marco Pesaresi (Rimini, 1964 – 2001). After the high school he attends the Istituto Europeo di Design in Milan, where he starts his career as a professional photographer. In 1990 he join the Contrasto agency and after spending many years between Milan and Rome he settles in Rimini. He travels a lot around Africa and Europa and as a photographer he concentrates mainly on the most intricate and difficult social problems in Italy and in our society: immigration, drug, marginalization and prostitution. For a long time he documents the night life in Italy and abroad depicting intimate moments and extreme situations. The engagement and the closer examination of these themes give Marco Pesaresi the opportunity to work continuously for many months on important photo-reportage. This work gives rise to Underground (published in Italy by Contrasto and in the USA by Aperture): a work that records the life in the subways of ten different city in the world. Also the project on the megastores was realized in the same way. This project, shot between Japan, USA and Russia, was aimed at documenting the new consumeristic habits of these big nations. The last work of Pesaresi is a black and white reportage about Rimini: a moving and gloomy portrait of his hometown that became a book in 2003 and an exhibition. His photos are regularly published on major international newspapers like PanoramaL’EspressoGeoEl PaísSetteThe IndependentThe Observer and many more. He exhibits in Arles during the Rencontres Internationales de la Photo, in Perpignan during the Festival Visa pour l’Image in 1996 and his exhibition Underground was presented in many European cities. In 1994 he is awarded with the price Premio Linea d’Ombra.
Marco Pesaresi dies on 22 December 2001 in Rimini, the city where he has worked for a long time.


NEW YORK, APERTURE, 1998, P. 150

ROMA, CONTRASTO, 1998, P. 150

For him photography was a way to face life by overcoming the problems that led him to feel awkward in many everyday situations. Because Marco had a special sensibility that often obliged him to look at reality from a special point of view, with the amazed eyes of the photographer that comes from afar, from an undefined somewhere that is still far away.

Roberto Koch

(President “Contrasto” Agency)

Marco used the reportage to embody his demons. He went towards them and face them. Dwarves, cripples, prostitutes, drug addicts and mad people, beggars and tramps, people without any hope for redemption. […]

I am sure that photography was the most beautiful season of his life and since I know that it was a very long season, I think that he lived a damned, wandering, intense and dreaming life, the only possible life.

Renata Ferri

(Journalist and Chief editor of “Io Donna”)


That tour round the world among the underground bowels of the biggest urban areas started from the Berlin subway. Marco conceived and wanted this story told through images more than anything else and this was the work that consecrated him at international level.
A journey that thrilled him but at the same time ruined him. He was driven by the desire to discover, the need to know excess, the desire to live off the intensity of others eyes and by the endless thirst for freedom.
A tour de force that led Marco to document the everyday life in the subways of the ten most populated cities of the world: after the German capital he visited London, Moscow, Calcutta, Madrid, Mexico City, New York, Tokyo, Paris and Milan.

“Maybe Marco did not expect that the tunnel of light that he discovered trying his first camera would became a tunnel of darkness after walking down many tunnels, the ones of the most extreme and hard experiences of his life. Maybe he did not – or maybe he did – imagine that together with many pairs of shoes he would have also worn out emotions and feelings, with the physical discomfort and mental exhaustion collected during the countless days spent in the underground, to catch and witness all kind of situations. He had made it but starting a new journey was not only an adventure in search of himself and the others but also a continuous bet with the unknown, the unforeseeable and the unexpected. Maybe he did not – or maybe he did – know that like for the Homer’s and Dante’s hero the see would have closed above him very soon.”

Paola Sobrero

Thanks to:

Città di Savignano sul Rubicone