At the top of Carlotta di Lenardo grandparents’ house in Italy there is a room which houses the library. A hidden door amongst the bookshelves opens into a secret attic, a large room dominated by an enormous model railway, which her grandfather built and added to throughout his life.
Significant though it was for her relationship with him, one day during a family lunch he revealed her another of his not very secret passions – his enduring love for photography – and shared with her his archive of more than 8,000 photographs: a body of vernacular work capturing over half a century of life in vivid colour.
Unknown in his lifetime, Alberto di Lenardo’s work offers a precursor to some of Italy’s best-loved photographers, from Luigi Ghirri to Guido Guidi, with work made across Italy, the USA, Brasil, Morocco, Greece and beyond. In Carlotta’s scrupulous sequencing, An Attic Full of Trains shows us a joyous cross-section of life in the 20th Century: one of beaches and bars, mountains, road trips, lovers and friends.