Massimo Vitali (Italian, b.1944) is best known for his monumental color photographs of beaches, pools, and leisure scenes, often taken from removed vantage points, adapting the historical practice of landscape painting and figural studies to the photographic lens. Born in Como, Vitali studied photography in the 1960s at the London College of Printing, and pursued a career in photojournalism in the 1970s for several European magazines, among other publications. In the 1980s, he began working with cinematography for television and film, before focusing on photography for purely artistic purposes.

He began his series of beaches in the mid-1990s, later expanding his scenes to include pools, ski resorts, discotheques, piazzas, and other tourist and leisure sites around the world. In his richly colored, detailed works, Vitali achieves a balance between interpersonal narratives and the natural world, in images capturing human activity amidst panoramic views of landscapes. His work focuses on the voyeuristic capacities of photography, examining the anonymous, detached nature of urban life in the interactions between his subjects, seen at a distance by the viewer. Vitali’s work is held in the collections of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York, the Centro de Arte Reina Sofia in Madrid, the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam, and the Centre Pompidou in Paris, among other institutions. He currently lives and works in Berlin and in Lucca, Italy.


Born in Como, Italy
Studied photography at the London College of Printing, London, UK
Was a freelance photojournalist
Was Director of Photography in Advertising and Fiction Films
Started to work on large format photography
Began the Beach Series
Lives and works in Lucca, Italy and Berlin, Germany


L'Institut Culturel Bernard Magrez présente Rêves de Venise, Bordeaux, France
Massimo Vitali, Arcadian Remains, Bonni Benrubi Gallery, New York, USA (solo)
Massimo Vitali: New Works, Brancolini Grimaldi, London, UK (solo)
A meno di non ricorrere a una fotografia - M & D ARTE, Gorgonzola
By The Sea - Madelyn Jordon Fine Art, Scarsdale, NY
Sense of Place - European Landscape Photography - BOZAR - Palais des Beaux-Arts / Paleis voor Schone Kunsten, Brussels
Segment #2 - Borusan Contemporary, Istanbul
Extraordinary Photographs Iii - Rosier Gallery, San Francisco, CA
Peripheral Visions: Italian Photography, 1950s-Present - Leubsdorf Art Gallery - Hunter College, New York City, NY
Demonstrationen. Vom Werden normativer Ordnungen - Frankfurter Kunstverein, Frankfurt/Main
FOTOGRAFIA ITALIANA: 8 film per 8 fotografi, Auditorium del MAXXI, Rome, Italy
An Italian perpective, curated by Angela Madesani, Studio la Città, Verona, Italy
The Armory Show 2011 - Galería SENDA, Barcelona
An Italian perspective. Ma lo sguardo vede? - Studio La Città, Verona
Massimo Vitali - M+B, Los Angeles, CA
Massimo Vitali - A Touch Of Summer - HilgerBROTKunsthalle, Vienna
Massimo Vitali - Galeria Maior - Palma de Mallorca, Palma de Mallorca
Art Now - The Columns, Seoul
Medianoche en la Ciudad - Centre d’Art la Panera, Lleida
Human Territories Part 2 - Crown Gallery, Brussels
Massimo Vitali – disturbances of reality - hilger contemporary, Vienna
Massimo Vitali - Foam Fotografiemuseum, Amsterdam
Massimo Vitali - galeria SENDA-espai 2NOU2, Barcelona
Massimo Vitali - Galería SENDA, Barcelona
Massimo Vitali - New Works - Crown Gallery, Brussels
Massimo Vitali - M+B, Los Angeles, CA
Massimo Vitali - - Galerie Hafenrichter & Flügel
Massimo Vitali - - Artcore Gallery, Toronto, ON
Massimo Vitali - Jackson Fine Art, Atlanta, GA
Massimo Vitali - Old Concepts, New Works - The Columns, Seoul
Massimo Vitali - hilger contemporary, Vienna
Massimo Vitali - M+B, Los Angeles, CA
American Beaches - Massimo Vitali - Brancolini Grimaldi - Florence, Florence
American Beaches - Brancolini Grimaldi - London, London (England)
Massimo Vitali: Playas, discotecas y supermercados - galeria SENDA-espai 2NOU2, Barcelona
Massimo Vitali - Playas, discotecas y supermercados - Galería SENDA, Barcelona
Massimo Vitali - Crown Gallery, Brussels
Massimo Vitali - Fotografien 1995 - 2005 - Lentos Kunstmuseum Linz, Linz
Massimo Vitali - La Fabrica Galeria, Madrid
Massimo Vitali - Fotografie - Guidi&Schoen - Arte Contemporanea, Genoa
Massimo Vitali - Mu.ZEE, Oostende
Massimo Vitali - hilger contemporary, Vienna
Massimo Vitali - Hilger modern, Vienna
Massimo Vitali - Centro per l´Arte Contemporanea Luigi Pecci, Prato, PO
Massimo Vitali - Crown Gallery, Brussels
Massimo Vitali - Galleria Cons Arc, Chiasso
Camere con vista, Il Filatoio di Caraglio, Italy
Continuità: Arte in Toscana 1968-1989, Palazzo Fabroni, Pistoia, Italy
Cache-Cache, Camouflage, MUDAC Musée de Design et d’Arts appliqués contemporains, Lausanne, Switzerland
Trade, Nederlands Foto Institut, Rotterdam, The Netherlands
The Photographers’ Gallery Print Room, UK (solo)
Forum Culturel Blanc-Mesnil, Biozones, Bobigny, France
Massimo Vitali - Neue Arbeiten - ARNDT, Berlin
Massimo Vitali - All too Human - ARNDT, Berli
Beach & Disco - Galerie Fotohof, Salzburg
Massimo Vitali - Studio Guenzani, Milan
Galerie du Jour Agnès B, Paris, France (solo)
Le Quartz, Brest, France (solo)
In Uso, Museo Michetti, Francavilla al Mare, Paesaggi Italiani del ‘900, Palazzo dell’Arengario, Milan, Italy
Photography from the Martin z. Margulies Collection, The Art Museum at Florida International University, Miami, USA
The Big Picture: Large Format Photography, Middlebury College Museum of Art, Middlebury, USA
Recontres Internationales de la Photo, Arles, France (solo)
Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York, USA (solo)
Atheneum, Université de la Bourgogne, Dijon, France (solo)
España 98, Madrid, Spain
Italian Photojournalism around 1968, Triennale, Milan, Italy
Paesaggi Italiani, Gallerie degli Uffizi, Florence, Italy
Photographer's Gallery, London, UK (solo)
Studio Guenzini, Milan, Italy (solo)
Un Paese Unico, Museo Alinari, Florence, Italy
Europa, Encontros de fotografia, Coimbra, Portugal
Postwar Italian Photojournalism, Villa Bottini, Lucca, Italy
Sguardigardesani, with Gabriele Basilico, Museo Civico, Riva del Garda, Italy
Galleria ConsArc, Spiagge Italiane, Chiasso, Switzerland (solo)
Historisches Archiv der Stadt Köln, East German Panoramas, Cologne, Germany (solo)
Biennale Internazionale di Fotografia, Turin, Italy (solo)