While the paparazzi are often harshly vilified by the media, celebrities, and onlookers alike, a new photo series exhibit at the Centro Italiano per la Fotografia in Turin presents their controversial work as a unique art form.
The term 'paparazzo' (plural: paparazzi) was introduced to the world via Walter Santesso's role as a persistent news photographer in Federico Fellini's iconic 1960 film, La Dolce Vita. This started both a cultural 'Golden Age' in Italy and a rampant international increase in brazen cameramen invading the personal space of famous people for that perfect, intimate, newsworthy shot. Some popular celebrities were flattered, while others became violent. Artists and photo editors, such as the British Alison Jackson, even resorted to staging 'scandalous' photos of the rich and famous using lookalike actors.
The profession's glory days came to a screeching halt in 1997 when Princess Diana's tragic death in a Paris car crash was blamed by some media outlets on the paparazzi who chased her in a nearby vehicle. Today, the paparazzi face numerous legal restrictions as the catalysts for anti-stalking and harassment bills in many countries, and many are currently under restraining orders.
Whether you love or hate the job, the vintage photos showcased at Arrivano i Paparazzi in Turin provide a nostalgic window into the past, as well as a poignant commentary on the struggle for privacy famous people still face. Scroll down to see our favorite black and white photos, and vote for the ones that made the most impact on you.