Massimo Vitali was born in Como, Italy, in 1944. He moved to London after high school, where he studied Photography at the London College of Printing.
In the early Sixties he started working as a photojournalist, collaborating with many magazines and agencies in Italy and in Europe. It was during this time that he met Simon Guttmann, the founder of the agency Report, who was to become fundamental in Massimo’s growth as a “Concerned Photographer”. At the beginning of the Eighties a growing mistrust in the belief that photography had an absolute capacity to reproduce the subtleties of reality led to a change in his career path. He began working as a cinematographer for television and cinema. However, his relationship with the still camera never ceased, and he eventually turned his attention back to “photography as a means for artistic research”.
His series of Italian beach panoramas began in the light of drastic political changes in Italy. Massimo started to observe his fellow countrymen very carefully. He depicted a “sanitized, complacent view of Italian normalities”, at the same time revealing “the inner conditions and disturbances of normality: its cosmetic fakery, sexual innuendo, commodified leisure, deluded sense of affluence, and rigid conformism”. [Whitney Davis, “How to Make Analogies in a Digital Age” in October Magazine, Summer 2006, no.117, p.71-98.] Over the past 12 years he has developed a new approach to portraying the world, illuminating the apotheosis of the Herd, expressing and commenting through the most intriguing, palpable forms of contemporary art – Photography. In 1995 he commenced the Beach Series.
He lives and works in Lucca, Italy, and in Berlin, Germany.