Since moving from Milan to Los Angeles in the 1990s, Gianluca Galtrucco considerably enriched his experience as an art photographer. He also wrote, produced and directed the award-winning short film Blind Spot (2007).
Galtrucco has produced two photography books, For Your Consideration (2017) and Time Traveler (2021) both published by Hatje Cantz, Germany. Time Traveler the traveling photography exhibit premiered at Edition ONE Gallery, Santa Fe, NM in July 2022, followed by Leica Gallery, West Hollywood, CA. in August. His first NFTs inspired by Time TravelerAlien and Spaceman will launch on The Secret, Blockchain, in the fall of 2022.
This last book of photographs, Time Traveler, it delights our sensibilities, projecting us into a cosmos that puts an end to science. We encounter UFOs, some oddly antiquated, others futuristic. We come across an astronaut eating in a restaurant or machines and vehicles that fill what could be interplanetary colonies. Time Traveler is full of improbable scenes that reduce time and space.
Galtrucco’s works have been shown in many venues, including the groundbreaking group exhibition “New Italian Landscape”, curated by Maria Grazia Torri, which toured throughout Italy in 1999, and “7 Artists Meet”, mounted in 2000 at the Sharjah Art Museum. His personal exhibition, “Metamorphosis”, curated by Giovanna Zamboni Paulis and Alma Ruiz, was presented at the Italian Cultural Institute in Los Angeles in 2000. He has had personal exhibitions in Milan, Barcelona and New York. He also participated in the Florence Biennale and the MIA Photo Fair in Milan.
Patricia Lanza: The series and book publication, Time Traveler, is about outer space, space travel, and our search for intelligent life in the universe. How did your interest in this subject arise and what are your influences?
Gianluca Galtrucco: My fascination with space travel started in my youth when I loved watching space movies and reading science fiction novels. But my influences have been very diverse. Among my favorite books are Atlante, based on photos, by Luigi Ghirri and Invisible Cities, by Italo Calvino. Time Traveler is a contemplation, a visual meditation on the heavens, space travel and extraterrestrial life. I also want this series and this publication to be a visit into the past and into the future, a visit that humanity has made time and time again over the past millennium. I grew up in Milan, within walking distance of the Planetarium, the Brera Academy (which had been an astronomical observatory). These affected my early interest in the cosmos
PL: What are the distinctive plots of this series?
GG: The series follows four distinct plots: the space travel and return to Earth of astronauts and their daily lives, the possible abduction of humans by extraterrestrials, the metallic bowels of the aerospace industry (with its facilities, its control panels , its monitors and storage tanks), and the silent beauty of a delicate sky.
PL: Your work adopts a cinematic approach. How has coming from Italy and living in Los Angeles affected your style?
GG: When I moved to Los Angeles, the capital of world cinema. There I encountered a wildly incoherent cosmos, in which luxury, artifice, spectacle and glamor coexist with poverty, naivety, crime and gloom. It’s the surreal life of Los Angeles, a place of visual incongruities, just like in the movies. Los Angeles has also become a place for sci-fi dreams thanks to the development of the aerospace industry.
PL: You are exploring the idea of extraterrestrial life, what do you think given the recent release of data on UFOs and the subject?
GG: While I shot a lot of this footage around Los Angeles, I was also interested in finding locations that conjure up visions of otherworldly sentient beings and UFOs. Naturally, I visited the now legendary sites of possible extraterrestrial contact, including Roswell, New Mexico, and Nevada’s “Extraterrestrial Highway,” Route 375. Recent data released by government agencies confirms that there are UFOs. I believe that there are other forms of “life” in the universe, but the state and form they take are still unknown, including those of intelligent beings.
PL: What are you trying to do with your book and your series?
GG: I will be hosting a grand opening event and exhibition July 1-30, 2022 at Edition One Gallery in Santa Fe, NM to coincide with the 75th anniversary of UFO/Roswell NM, as well as a book signing . The Leica Gallery in Los Angeles will host my exhibition from August 4 to mid-September 2022.
PL: Galtrucco; Why did you decide to enter the blockchain space with your Time Traveler NFT series?
GG: The blockchain offering of decentralized ownership and tradable digital goods made sense to me. While I can’t claim to fully understand the implications of NFTs, they provide an opportunity to exchange art and build community. I was waiting for the right situation to launch my first NFT. The Time Traveler exhibit is that moment because the collection represents humanity’s pursuit of endeavors more extraordinary than itself. There’s something paradoxically alluring about creating something to deliver on the web, and the structures and limitations of a unique digital identifier that can’t be copied, substituted, or subdivided. This new way of defining works of art adds another meaningful dimension. Creation can be fleeting, and if the artistic crucible is a crucible, then NFTs can capture the moment of fusion, which is magic.
Close Up: Gianluca Galtrucco by Patricia Lanza – The Eye of Photography Magazine