At the end of WWII, around 1945, Italy was dealing with governmental changes and severe poverty, among other social issues. In the decade that followed, much changed. Italy began a transformation that covered all aspects of daily life including home life, employment and even the arts. These are just a few of the reasons that La Strada, an Italian street photography book from the 1960’s, is such a rare historical gem.
At the time, street photography revolved around the work of a few greats, with the likes of HCB and Robert Frank dominating the field. In La Strada, both professional and amateur photographers alike seem to use the established street style of the time as their starting point. Still, it is clear to see that many of them were testing new limits and experimenting with their own personal style and vision. The result is a collection of works that is both unique and captivating.
La Strada today is a collector’s item that is quite pricey, with existing copies selling for just around $1,000. Fortunately, if La Strada is out of your price range, you can check out this amazing video summary of the book, on The Art of Photography TV website, which even includes a few glimpses of some of the images inside. This beautiful collection of street shots creates a window to the past and reminds us that documenting street life today means leaving a record of what we now know for generations to come.