Interview with Leigh Carter, Fassi UK Ltd:What made you, as MD of Fassi UK Ltd, want to collaborate with LBSU in particular?
Right from my first contact with Daniel, I was impressed by his enthusiasm for the project. The student’s confident presentation of the initial concepts to Giovanni and myself was very professional and, importantly, gave us the feeling our calendar was in safe hands. Critically, each shoot was meticulously planned beforehand (including an extensive equipment list) and this was key to maximising the shoot time once in Italy. Once in Italy the collective working nature of the SBC approach came across strongly for me as an observer.
Although each student was responsible for the execution of their individual ideas I was impressed by how everyone joined in holding lights and working smoke machines, etc. long into the night to make each shoot a success. Daniel’s tireless energy in guiding and coaching everyone was a thread that pulled everything together brilliantly. It is always a pleasure to watch an effective team at work with a natural leader and coach at the helm. The end result is a calendar full of unique and beautiful images that has moved the 'Crane Art' concept to a new, higher benchmark.
Considering past collaborators of the Fassi Crane Art Project, namely the Italian, Spanish and South African Photography schools, was it important for you that the calendar reflect something of British culture and iconography?
We definitely wanted to move the calendar in another direction artistically, and away from the previous school’s emphasis on ‘post production’ techniques by shooting ‘in camera’. The overall concept was to photograph the cranes on location, to celebrate the scale of the factory spaces, their precision engineering, and the aesthetic beauty of the cranes. This has been combined brilliantly with ‘Britishness’, whether in the colours of the UK flag (‘Dancing Cranes’), the projection of the London skyline on the factory wall (‘Fassi in London’) or the iconic London landmarks painted in light (‘Drawing like Picasso’).
Do you think the calendar will be well received by Fassi customers? If so, why?
Of course. The calendar uses ‘real’ cranes and familiar locations but it reveals an aesthetic beauty which was there all along, but perhaps had gone unnoticed in the day to day activity of producing cranes. For example, using the backdrop of the famous Fassi autostrada sign in ‘Fassi has arrived’ created a truly stunning image in which actual cranes are the stars. I think this will be at the root of the appeal.