April 15, 2016 by Laura Gomez


Cristina Vatielli was born in Rome. After graduating at the Scuola Romana di Fotografia she began working in the photography field as an assistant mainly specialized in photo postproduction. Since 2004 Cristina has been collaborating with the Magnum photos photographer Paolo Pellegrin and many others photographers. In 2006 she worked in the Magnum Photos digital department and from 2006 to 2012 her work was represented by Prospekt agency. She collaborated with Paolo Pellegrin for the Fred Perry advertising campaign and she has also worked as a photo reporter for many famous brands such as as Nike, Cocacola, Abbot, Havaianas and Proctel&Gamble. Some of her self portraits with Arno Rafael Minkkinen are part of the book “Il corpo solitario. L’autoscatto nella fotografia contemporanea” edited by Rubettino Editore.

In 2007 Cristina won the Winephoto International Photographic Contest and she took part to “Reflexions” International Masterclass curated by Giorgia Fiorio and Gabriel Bauret. In 2008 she took part in the realization of a book and exhibition edited and curated by PelitiAssociati for the Fater company. In 2009 she won the Enzo Baldoni Award and in the 2012 the multimedia “LunaPark” won the Honorable Mention in Moving Images of the IPA (International Photography Awards ). Her last project ”Le Donne di Picasso” have received recognition by IPA and MIFA awards, among others.

Paolo Pellegrin (MagnumPhotos), Annalisa D’Angelo, Marta Sarlo (Contrasto), PelitiAssociati, Prospekt, Nike, Havaianas, Cocacola, So What Srl, Rat Creatives, Fabric Factory, Sec Srl, Eu-Osha, The Trip magazine, LeCool, NOEO, Walls Contemporary Public Art, Studio di Architettura Calaci&Berger.

2016 “In Posa” curated by Mario Peliti. Palazzo Isolani, ArteFiera, Bologna.
2014 “Punti di Vista” curated by Marta Piazza. Spazio Cerere, Roma.
2014 ”DonnexDonne” curated by Manuela De Leonardis and Camera 21 for QVC. Galleria del Cembalo, Roma
2014 “Rulet” shown in 24 cities in 5 countries; curated by Sergey Karpov.
2009 “Exilio de dentro” curated by Annalisa D’Angelo. Le Confluences, Paris
2008 “Quotidianamente fotografi” curated by Maria Evangelisti at the “S.T. Gallery” during VII International Photographic Festival in Rome.
2008 “Fater 50 anni in mostra” curated by Mario Peliti and Giovanna Calvenzi. Modern Art Museum Vittorio Colonna, Pescara.
2008 “Guerra e Pace”. Genti di Abruzzo Museum, Pescara.
2008 “Exilio de dentro”. WinePhoto International Festival, Mogliano Veneto, Venezia.
2007 “Reflexions Exhibition” Museum of Photography. Thessaloniki, Grecia

Times, Liberazione, Le Monde, Diario, Io Donna, D della Repubblica, L’Espresso, Gioia, Marie Claire Italy, Newsweek Giappone, Newsweek America, Newsweek Russia, Afisha, Paris Match

Photo Interview:

Name: Cristina Vatielli
Age: 32
Birthday: 11-05-1983
College: Classic and humanistic studies
Favorite Color:  SteelBlue/Petrol Blue
Favorite Book: The Evolution Man by Roy Lewis and Broken April by Ismail Kadarè
Favorite Movie: The Concert by Radu Mihaileanu 
Favorite Food:  Tortellini in brodo
Favorite Quote: “Live and let live “  Arthur Schopenhauer

For how long have been in photography? How did you start? 
Photography was my father’s passion, and I always followed him from since I was little girl. I attended photography school in Rome, and by the age of 20 I started to work as an assistant for Paolo Pellegrin.

How would you define yourself as an artist? 
I really don’t define my self, I just  use photography as a way to express my self, my sensibility, my emotions and the stories I want to describe. Reportage, portrait, staged photography, still life, and many more, are the ways that I love to discover day by day.

Where do you find inspiration?
Usually I always tell stories that are part of my personal experiences, speaking with people, going to the theatre, traveling, reading. Living.

Is Brainstorming  not the only creative method  use to create new concepts? 

Brainstorming together is a great way to develop goals. I think it is really important, especially when the project needs different skills. It is essential to surround yourself with people you admire to share and compare your ideas with them.

Please could you tell us about photography and digital technology?
Digital technology has revolutionized photography . I think it is important not to abuse the technology especially for the post-production. I modify often the images of other photographers in photoshop, and it is very important for me to maintain the reality of shoot , just as in the darkroom.

What type of camera do you use most? 
For assignments I work with digital camera Canon Mark II and Fuji x100s. For my personal projects I use Mamiya and Fuji 4.5/6

What is your favorite lens?
35 mm

What has been your most memorable assignment and why?
For L’Espresso I did a big assignment with Fabrizio Gatti, one of the italian best giornalist. We had to tell the discomfort of commuters in Italy, from the north to the south, by busses and trains. It was amazing work with him. Working with a professional what expresses his needs to feel the real emotions while telling the stories. The best part is to work with someone you share ways and goals. We travelled around Italy for 10 days. It was great and intense experience.

What are your favorites three images you have shot recently?
I have worked for 4 years at the project “Le donne di Picasso”: 8 images that represent each of the most influenced women that were part of Picasso’s life and art. It is a self portrait project, a very deep and intense experience. From these 8 images, my favorites are the ones representing: Dora Maar, Eva Goeul, Francoise Gilot.

How important is an awesome website for your business?
I think it is essential. As a photographer I believe that is not needed a dinamic or innovate website, moreover a clear and simple page that shows photos in the best way possible. 

What’s the most important quality a photographer needs to have? 
From my personal experiences I realized that curiosity, openness flexibility with personal time and showing availability towards the needs of others, could be of help while working towards a great shot! 

Which of your projects has given you the most satisfaction?
My first project The Memory of the Civil War in Spain, was an important step that affirmed me as a reporter. It was a dream that come true when I found my self working on this project, being able thanks to my work to give voice to realities kept silent. After 10 years, I changed completely photographic language.  My last project “Le Donne di Picasso” that I consider my first complete experience as a staged photography, gave me a bis satisfaction. This project was recently Awarded as a second place at the Sony Awards 2016 and is actually exposed in Rome at the beautiful Galleria del Cembalo inside Palazzo Borghese, until the 18th of June.

List of your clients?
Euosha, European Parliament, Sec srl, Inail, Acea, Nike, PelitiAassociati,  Havaianas, Cocacola, Endogroup, NOEO, L’Espresso, Newsweek, The Trip Magazine, D della Repubblica, Gioia, Afisha. 

Who are the photographer’s you admire the most?
If we look at the reportage, Paolo Pellegrin. He was my mentor for many years, and it was I consider myself blessed because I was able to learn from his professionalism and his special skills, great eyes that are able through a shot to narrative unique stories. But also Stanley Green, and of course Joseph Kudelka, Robert Capa and many others.
Arno Rafael Minnkinen, Jiulia Fullerton Batten and Cindy Sherman inspire me for the self-portrait and staged photography. I’m completely in  love with their works.

What about architects and designers?
I love Kalatrava styles. Regarding design I love whatever is innovating and respectable for the eco system. There are also small but important designs realities in Roma that I really appreciate.

What are your next projects?
I will continue to work on staged shooting, but while my background is in reportage, I always fell the need to present realities that are kept silent. “Picasso’s women” is the beginning of a bigger project.