Archivio Luigi Ghirri

Luigi Ghirri is considered a pioneer of colour art photography. His work has been the subject of numerous monographs and retrospective exhibitions, most recently at the Museum Folkwang, Essen, and Reina Sofia. It was with some excitement, then, that Systems Studio accepted a commission from the Luigi Ghirri Archive to prepare a comprehensive revision of its identity and website.

Luigi Ghirri’s pictures hover between the concrete and abstract. Taking this tension as the starting point of our design, we drew inspiration from Ghirri’s fascination with the graphic conventions of cartography. We used light rulers and relatively small type, both clay coloured, to establish a refined and open table-like framework on white space. Our idea was that this archival housing should both frame and be disrupted by Ghirri’s enigmatic pictures. The landing page, which, something like a fruit machine, randomly juxtaposes images, gives form to Ghirri's concern with contingency and interpretative open-endedness.

The Ghirri Archive’s website now holds the largest collection of Ghirri images available on line. This fits well with Ghirri’s concern for accessibility. Organised under series titles spanning Ghirri’s twenty-year career, the Archive’s website expresses something of the extraordinary layering and openness of the artist’s body of work.


The Archive’s website is bilingual. We were able to provide additional language versions without further code (that would have resulted in a heavier site, adversely affecting performance) by using Contentful for the CMS, rather than the more commonly used WordPress.