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The photography exhibition "Jazz Off The Wall: New Orleans Journey" by Yuri Catania celebrates the fortieth anniversary of JazzAscona, the most important festival dedicated to New Orleans jazz music outside the US.

From June 22 to September 1, in the halls of the Ascona Municipal Museum, visitors will be able to admire black-and-white photographs that highlight the stages of Catania's artistic journey. The exhibition begins with photographic portraits taken in New Orleans of artists and personalities connected to the world of jazz who have been present at JazzAscona over the years and it continues with artworks from the series "New Orleans Flowers Legacy," which are photo compositions on aluminum panels that juxtapose the aforementioned photographs with others depicting architectural elements of the city and local nature, creating surreal compositions. The exhibition concludes with a sort of workshop room where a large site-specific street art photographic work will be set up, similar to those found in the Borgo of Ascona. However, this piece will be intentionally left unfinished to allow visitors to participate in its creation.

The project explores the diverse cultural mosaic of the city. New Orleans stands out for its melting pot of French, Spanish, Creole, and American influences, which are reflected in its vibrant musical and cultural scene.

Through the artist's lens, the jazz capital is revealed in a new series of black-and-white photographs, portraying the characters who bring the city to life with their music. The photos alternate between the architecture of houses, historic buildings, and steamboats, and portraits of musicians, offering an authentic snapshot of daily life. Special attention is given to the female figure, depicted on multiple levels: from the city's first female mayor, LaToya Cantrell, to burlesque dancers, from the tradition of baby-dolls to jazz singers, true queens of live music nights.

New Orleans is universally recognized as the world's jazz capital, a title earned thanks to the education offered by prestigious universities like Loyola University New Orleans, known for its College of Music and Media, and the University of New Orleans with its renowned Jazz Studies program. The city is alive with clubs, theaters, and streets where parades and marches take place, featuring a variety of instrumental sounds and multicolored displays that captivate and enchant entire crowds.

Catania's experience is a multisensory journey of photographs, sounds, and videos captured on the streets of the city at all hours of the day and night. This project, the result of continuous improvisation and artistic instinct, involved over 160 artists in less than thirty days, offering a unique and dynamic vision of the city.

The exhibition is further enriched with the use of augmented reality. Through the free ArtiVive application, by scanning the marked images, visitors can have an immersive experience, attending a parade or a live concert on the streets of New Orleans, thus feeling the magic and energy of the city.

It's Jazz, Baby!



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