About

Leonardo Pellegatta
Born in Milan. Working in Europe & Japan.

Born in Milan but spending one third of his lifetime in Japan and working in Tokyo. Leo was gifted a camera at the age of 17 and quickly developed a passion for photography and filmmaking. He eventually went on to receive a BFA in Fine Art from SVA in New York.
Leo is known for his haunting, near-surreal explorations of the intimate dialogue between memory, time and place, as well as frequent collaborations with musicians and writers. He has worked extensively in the realms of fine art and documentary, with forays into editorial, fashion and corporate work.
His art projects have been featured in many festivals, galleries and publications and have been presented by way of exhibition and multimedia installation in several venues such as Centre PompidouItalian Institute of Culture & Irish Cultural Center in Paris, Tokyo Wonder SiteBiwako BiennaleKyotographie–KG+ festivalHorse Pistes festival and Japan foundation in Bangkok. He has directed for FAOU foundation New York and the artist Mariko Mori the short film Primal Rhythm, in 2011.
His editorial work has been published on various publications including: Vogue, Living, Underscore magazine, Repubblica, Corriere della Sera, Il Sole 24 Ore and numerous international journals.

He has published two monographs: Indefinite Path and il Circo. Leo lives now in Florence.

Download personal CV ↓

For general enquires, prints* and in-depth assignment work, please contact:

leo.pellegatta@gmail.com
(IT) +39 347 444 3009

Selected clients

Acne, Beretta, Dentsu, Dynamo Academy, Edwina Hoerl, Faou Foundation, Malo, Plan-C, The North Face, The Yomiuri Shimbun, Woolrich, Stephanemarais_shiseido, Terra Events, Living, Modern Living Japan, Underscore Magazine, Corriere Della Sera, La Repubblica

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Graphic Design: studio òbelo w/ Giorgia Florenzano
Web development: Carlo Schlatter

Selected experiences and publications

Year

Name

Category

  • Kagome Kagome (かごめかごめ) is a Japanese children`s game and the song associated with it is a subject of much interest because of its cryptic lyrics. According to some interpretation “kagome” refers to the Star of David and is connected to mount Tsurugi, the highest peak of Shikoku island in Japan, where some scholars believe that the Ark of Covenant is secretly hidden in a cave … …

    Exhibition dates: 04/12 - 04/23/2017
    Photo light-boxes & installation: Leo Pellegatta

    LIVE PERFORMANCE:
    FIlm: Leo Pellegatta
    Music by Nicolas Laferrerie, Tokiko Ihara, Samuel André and Umu
    Special guest Chris Mosdell* _ Poetry

    JUNPU ELEMENTARY SCHOOL 
    609-1, Kakimoto-cho, Shimogyo-ku, Kyoto

    The Ark, the Crane & the Turtle / Kg+

    Kyotographie_Kg+, Kyoto

  • Tropical Tree is inspired by the 1960`s play Nettaiju by Yukio Mishima. In this play a tragic drama takes place amid the uncluttered minimalist setting of a Japanese garden, inside of which a mysterious tropical tree is rising outrageously. 
    Throughout a visual and musical undertaking, the exhibition opens up Mishima`s literary work to an imaginary landscape, and extends the horizon to several themes and allegories associated with the tree, such as: the memory, the family, the conflict between nature and society, and the widespread idea in several world’s mythologies of a sacred Tree of life…

    Exhibition dates: 2016/4/22 – 2016/5/22

    LIVE PERFORMANCE on 2016/5/22nd | MYORENJI temple



    Aēsop Kawaramachi
    327 Shioya-cyo, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto

    Tropical Tree / Kyotographie_Kg+

    Kyoto

  • 今回の写真展『アークと鶴と亀/The ARK, the CRANE & the TURTLE』は、レオ・ペレガッタの最新作である。「アーク」とは、英語では「Ark of the Covenant(契約の箱)」とも呼ばれ『旧約聖書』に記されている、十戒が刻まれた石板を収めた箱のことで聖櫃(せいひつ)と称されることもある。この「アーク」について、日本でひそやかに語り継がれている物語がある。
    かつて、アッシリアが古代イスラエルを滅ぼす前のこと、当時の南北に分裂した古代イスラエルの十二支族のうち北の十支族が忽然と姿を消し、同時に神殿に置かれていたとされる契約の箱もその行方がわからなくなってしまった。以来、時代を越えてその行方を追って様々な憶測が交わされた。一説に、古代イスラエル王国の民が、密かに日本に持ち込んだのではないかと言われ、しかも、それは現在も四国・剱山のどこかに眠っている、というのだ。さらに、「かごめかごめ」のわらべうたは、失われたアークの出現を予言する歌だと推定する研究者たちもいる。

    実際に、失われた十支族を調査する機関であるイスラエル国の国家機関アミシャーブや前イスラエル大使も、剱山の調査も行っている。日ユ同祖論はかなり昔からささやかれてきたものであるが、近年になって発掘された奈良時代の木簡には、ペルシャ人の役人が存在していたことを証明するものまで出現したこともあり、当時の渡来人が中国や朝鮮だけではなく、シルクロードの遥か彼方から日本に到来していたことも明らかになってきている。レオの写真展は、なぜ彼がこの物語を作品とする必要があったのか、それは彼自身がユダヤであることとも関係している。彼は、様々な縁に導かれ、今は日本に暮らしている。それは、あたかも国を失った古代イスラエルの民の記憶を辿るような旅路そのものである。「これはドキュメンタリーでもなく、歴史的民族学的な問題でもない。あくまで僕自身の根源《ルーツ》という個人的かつ普遍的な物語なんだ」そう彼はいう。
    今回の展示では、フォトギャラリー・サイの2階部分を増設して初めての展示となる。
    1階とほぼ同じ広さの板の間のギャラリースペースを駆使したレオの古代への眼差しを紡ぐ幽玄の世界。
    ぜひお楽しみください。

    Gallery Sai osaka ….

    The Ark, the Crane & the Turtle / Photo-gallery Sai

    Osaka, Japan

  • CIRCO – by Leo Pellegatta 

    Aphorism by Ramòn Gòmez de la Serna, (excerpts from El Circo 1917)
    And with a short story* by Ishii Shinji

    – Plain | Edition of 500 copies
    – Limited Edition of 50 with 1 B/W Archival Pigment print 

    Self-Published in Tokyo | 64 pages | Language: Italian, Japanese

    PHOTO-BOX Size: 16,5 cm x 22,7 cm

    Circo / Book

    Tokyo

  • INDEFINITE PATH – by Leo Pellegatta | *with a short story by Ishii Shinji

    – Plain | Edition of 500
    – Limited Edition | with 1 Archival Pigment print on glossy paper 8.5 x 10 cm
    Both versions are 46 pages | 14,5 cm x 20,5 cm
    Language: English, Japanese

    ROUROU Japan.co.ltd. – publisher| Printed & Manufactured in Shangai, 2006

    Indefinite Path / Book

    Rorou _ Japan

  • Kagome Kagome (かごめかごめ) is a Japanese children`s game and the song associated with it is a subject of much interest because of its cryptic lyrics. According to some interpretation “kagome” refers to the Star of David and is connected to mount Tsurugi, the highest peak of Shikoku island in Japan, where some scholars believe that the Ark of Covenant is secretly hidden in a cave … …

    BIWAKO BIENNALE | OMIHACHIMAN 
    Kita Tei House | Exhibition dates: 2016/9/17 – 2016/11/6
    Photo light-boxes & installation: Leo Pellegatta

    LIVE PERFORMANCE | OCTOBER 30th, 2016
    Film by Leo Pellegatta
    Music by Nicolas Laferrerie, Tokiko Ihara, Samuel André and Umu
    Special guest Chris Mosdell* _ Poetry

    WWW. BIWAKOBIENNALE.JP

    The Ark, the Crane & the Turtle / Biwako Biennale

    Omihachiman, Japan

  • Kanzan Gallery is launching “Where Photography’s Going” as a way of introducing up-and-coming photographers. 
    The project’s first instalment is a series of travel-themed exhibitions. OPEN YOUR EYES NOW relates to James Joyce’s “Ulysses,” a novel with infinite possible interpretations. The gallery is turned into an installation of gelatin-silver prints, magic lanterns and sounds, inspired by the book’s imagery.

    Curated by: Mikiko Kikuta
    Music by: Nicolas Laferrerie

    “Open Your Eyes Now” / Kanzan Gallery

    Tokyo, Japan

  • The theme for the Abiko AIOE festival will be a free adaptation of the 1960`s play Tropical Tree (Nettaiju) by Yukio Mishima.
    Drawing an imaginary landscape the project is wishing to extend the horizon to several themes and allegories associated with the tree such as: memory, the family, the dichotomy between reason and passion, and order against chaos…
    In a parallel way to Yukio Mishima`s quest for identity, the Tropical Tree, endorse a spontaneous dialogue between Japanese and European artists.

    Koto & Voice improvisation by: Reiko Imanishi 
    “Sound Memory Box” by: Nicolas Laferrerie
    Film work by: Leo Pellegatta
    Calligraphy by: Setsuhi Shiraishi 

    *Live Performance on October 31st

    AIOE / Yubinbango270-1105 – Abiko,
    Chiba Prefecture Mikawayashinden 8, Japan

    Abiko International Open Air Art Exhibition

    Abiko, Japan

  • In conjunction with Singapore Art Book Fair 2014 at Centre for Contemporary Art in Singapore, UNDERSCORE Magazine launches the new issue N.5

    Featured photographer / pg. 40 ~ 50

    Underscore N.5 / Singapore Art Book Fair

    Singapore Art Book Fair

  • The Archeological museum of Istria is pleased to present “Ulysses”, a series of photographs by Leo Pellegatta initiated as an artist’s book project and developed as a wider series over a few years period. Playing with the in-between, Leo goes ceaselessly back and forth from James Joyce’s text to the places he still haunts, like Trieste. With a wandering mind, he captures traces, signs, lights and dialogues cheerfully and gracefully in the company of the genius writer.

    ARCHEOLOGICAL MUSEUM of ISTRIA
    Museum-Gallery / June 16th  > 23rd, 2014

    Ulysses / Archeological Museum of Istria

    Pula, Croatia

  • “Clouds are international, nomadic, ungraspable and uncontainable. And yet, despite their volatile and transitory nature, they are at the same time a tenacious and persistent presence in our visual experience.” Artphilein foundation called upon various artists – who in turn were encouraged to spread the invitation to others – to draw inspiration from the clouds and reflect on freedom and our rights. The result is Let’s meet on a Cloud of Freedom, a book and a group show which encompasses the themes of encounter (let’s meet), abstraction from a pre-defined sense of territoriality (clouds) and liberty (freedom).

    Artphilein Foundation
    10.06.2021 – 15.10.2021
    Via San Salvatore 2, Paradiso, Switzerland

    Let’s meet on a Cloud of Freedom / Artphilein Foundation

    Lugano, Switzerland

  • Gallery Trax in Yamanashi, is pleased to present a new group show in conjunction with the publication of “Gray Zone”, curated by the Japanese artist Hanayo.
    The book presents the work of six artists working in various media: photography, video, three-dimensional objects, and words.
    Featured artists: Hanayo, Leo Pellegatta, Nerhol, Hirofumi Hisoya, Futoshi Miyagi.

    Gallery Trax
    Sep 30 (Sat) 2017 – Oct 15 (Sun) 2017 
    1245 Gochoda, Takanecho, Hokuto-shi, Yamanashi

    Group show / Gallery Trax

    Yamanashi, Japan

  • Starting April 17, and continuing through to the 10th of May, the exhibition “ULYSSES _ Thought is the Thought of Thought” will be part of the KG+ satellite event of the Kyotographie photography festival in Kyoto.
    The work will be shown at the beautiful Aesop Kawaramachi together with a collaborative installation with artist/ furniture designer Hiroko Shiratori.
    The show is co-organised by Italian Institute of Culture, Osaka.

    Aēsop Kawaramachi
    327 Shioya-cyo, Nakagyo-ku, Kyoto

    Thought is the Thought of Thought @ Kyotographie_Kg+

    Aēsop Kawaramachi, Kyoto

  • With a wandering mind, inspired by the work of James Joyce and weaving words from the Ulysses, the exhibition “The Sun shines for you today”  would like to propose a dialogue between images, traces, sound and optical devices; following the invisible strings connected to the ephemeral strolls of Leopold Bloom and exploring new paths in the maze of a book open to multiple readings and infinite interpretations.
    “The Sun shines for you today” is a caption from Molly Bloom’s soliloquy in the last 50 lines of James Joyce’s ULYSSES.

    NAGUNE , Golden Gai – Shinjuku, TOKYO |
    Monday 19th May > Saturday 14th June 2014

    The Sun Shines for You Today / Nagune, Tokyo

    Nagune, Golden Gai – Tokyo, 19.5.2014

  • As part of a focus on travel and philosophies of place, Aēsop Ginza is pleased to host an exhibition with works from a recent photo book by Leonardo Pellegatta.
    ll Circo has been years in the making, following the geographical and personal journeys of three Italian circus families whom Pellegatta followed from 1998 to 2003: Franchetti (Circus Barcellona), Casartelli (Medrano), and Togni (Darix Togni and American Circus).
    The book is presented in two forms: a simple version, and a limited-edition photo box which includes an original fine art print and writings by avant garde Spanish writer Ramòn Gòmez de la Serna.

    The exhibition begins on Saturday 13 July, 2013, and continues until Sunday 1 September.

    Aēsop Ginza
    4-3-5 Ginza Chuo-ku
    Tokyo 104-0061
    Tel: +81 (0)3 6228 7818

    Circus Exhibition at Aēsop Ginza 

    Aesop Ginza, Tokyo, 13.9.2013

  • In occasion of a special night dedicated to experimental poetry, punk music and performative arts the Italian visual artist Leo Pellegatta and French composer & guitarist Nicol Faer have been invited to embark on a new teamwork with Nigerian-Irish artist and vocalist Osaro.
    The result of their collaboration is presented for the opening night at Black Jam – Bello Bar in Dublin during Fringe festival 2023.

    Black Jam / Fringe festival

    Bello Bar, Dublin, 15.9.2023

  • To celebrate James Joyce, on the 99th anniversary of his novel ‘Ulysses’ (1922), photographer Leo Pellegatta and composer Nicolas Laferrerie present a multimedia installation and performance at Spazio Choisi 01 in which sounds, music and images evoke Joyce’s imagination.
    On the occasion of the event at Spazio Choisi, the authors, in collaboration with Daniela Lorenzi (art printing house A14, Milan), present an artist’s edition inspired by the charm of optical instruments at the early years of the history of cinema.

    Think you’re escaping and run into yourself / Choisi Lugano

    Lugano, Switzerland

  • “Gray Zone” is an artist book published in conjunction with a group exhibition at Gallery Trax in Yamanashi, Japan.
    In this publication the idea of a “Gray Zone” travels through different interpretations and crystallize in different artists’ mind. The book presents the work of six artists working in various media: photography, video, three-dimensional objects, and words.
    Featured artists: Hanayo, Leo Pellegatta, Nerhol, Hirofumi Hisoya, Futoshi Miyagi.
    Edition: 150 / Publisher: Baby Panda Printing / Release: 2017

    Gray Zone

    Baby panda printing

  • The ARCHEOLOGICAL MUSEUM of ISTRIA & Bloom`s day Croatia are particularly pleased to present “Ulysses”, a series of photographs by Leonardo PELLEGATTA initiated as an artist’s book project and developed as a wider series over a two year period. Playing with the in-between, Leonardo PELLEGATTA goes ceaselessly back and forth from James JOYCE’s text to the places he still haunts, like Trieste. With a wandering mind, he captures traces, signs, lights and dialogues cheerfully and gracefully in the company of the genius writer.

    ARCHEOLOGICAL MUSEUM of ISTRIA / Museum-Gallery C8 / June 16th  > 23rd, 2014

    ULYSSES / ARCHEOLOGICAL MUSEUM of ISTRIA

    The ARCHEOLOGICAL MUSEUM of ISTRIA & Bloom`s day Croatia are particularly pleased to present “Ulysses”, a series of photographs by Leonardo PELLEGATTA initiated as an artist’s book project and developed as a wider series over a two year period. Playing with the in-between, Leonardo PELLEGATTA goes ceaselessly back and forth from James JOYCE’s text to the places he still haunts,…