Big Sky Hunting, the debut volume by the Italian photographer Alberto Sinigaglia, presents a voyage to the edge of representational space. 'Hunting' used not in the sense of the killing of animals by man, but as an expression of man’s dominance over this space: An expression of man’s atavistic obsession with controlling space. Big Sky Hunting explores and investigates the far reaches of the Cosmos, where defences are few and all attempts at domination have proved ultimately futile.
Prior to the invention of photography, man confronted the Cosmos as something that could only be experienced from afar. Man took inspiration from the Kantian definition of the Sublime; as that which puts man in a position of awareness of his own ignorance. Contemplation of infinite space compels the mind to become conscious of its own rational limitations and to acknowledge the possibility of an extrasensory dimension; an existence on a purely emotional plain. As expounded by the philosopher, the sentiment of the Sublime is solemn and taciturn and brings us beyond the vertiginous abyss
The images of space to which we have access today are extremely detailed and available to all via the internet. However, few realise that these images are not the product of a camera in the traditional sense of the word, but the extrapolation of data from electromagnetic waves to a receiver that have been interpreted and reconstructed by scientists. This interpretation, though rooted in science, remains human and therefore open to error and false perception.
Big Sky Hunting maps unexplored territories, describes cold and perfect technologies and narrates futures already lived and constituted. This photographic representation is an illusion. The result of the appropriation and manipulation of various elements; original images, modified documents and archaic information. Big Sky Hunting places the emphasis on the human mind’s capacity to create and imagine that which it wants to see, or better yet, that which it desires in order to create a protective shell; a reassuring barrier inside of which that which is known, or may be known, can be controlled.
Co-published with Skinnerboox.
700 copies 96 pages, 57 colour plates Translucent tip-in pages Silkscreen UV varnish pages Foreword by Stafano Graziani 20.5 cm x 25.0 cm Hot foil embossed hardcover with French fold dust cover Offset printing Éditions du LIC 2014 ISBN 978-82-93341-09-3