Curious figures, taking tea and passing the time in a Baroque garden: in his series The Innocents, Michael Paniccia conjures up a dreamlike vision of youthful hedonism in an enchanted world.
On a sea-green lawn, amidst pink-orange foliage and crimson hedges with hints of purple hues, odd figures frolic in eccentric outfits and feathered masks. They drink tea, play games, and explore the leafy maze that seems to dominate their world. Every now and again, a pretty china set, a metronome or a pair of garden shears might appear within a scene. There seems to be no predetermined route through this labyrinth, no exit, no prospect of leaving. Is theirs an existence of idle pleasure or desperation? The viewer is as displaced as the protagonists, who simply seem to make the best of their situation.Carla Susanne Erdmann
The perfect location was sourced in the form of private grounds in Greenwich, Connecticut, where the crew completed the shoot on a single autumn day in 2018. The post-production process, on the other hand, took a great deal longer. “The recolouring of the trees and bushes was very time-consuming and had to be handled carefully, so that it was not too heavy and also looked actually possible. We were able to push the files to such extremes because of the latitude of the raw files.”
EQUIPMENT: Leica S with Summarit-S 70 f/2.5 Asph (CS), Summicron-S 100 f/2 Asph and Apo-Elmar-S 180 f/3.5 (CS)
You can find the series in LFI 5.2019. More
Born in New York City in 1985, Paniccia took up photo-graphy at the age of 15. Pan-iccia graduated with an MFA from the NY Visual School of Arts in 2011. “It encompasses me and my everyday life. It has shaped how I see and exist in the world. Seeing is another way of feeling.” Paniccia regularly photographs for magazines such as Harper’s Bazaar, Vogue and Wall Street Journal. More