Adam Marelli

Photo by Adam Marelli / Text by Adam Marelli

Tell us about what you do?

I’m an artist and cultural photographer who specializes in photographing master craftsmen.

At the moment I am in Italy photographing one of the last traditional gondola makers called Tramontin e Figli.

Can you provide an anecdote that speaks to your own philosophy on style and clothing?

I like to wear clothes from people I know, personally.

It creates a cultural and personal bond that I find fulfilling. So what does that look like?

After art school I cut my teeth in construction for a dozen years. It left a lasting impression on my style.

When I’m in the studio or out shooting, I like hard wearing fabrics that are well cut and can take a beating. Look at old photographs of artist like Cezanne or Renoir, I’ve always enjoyed that they could wear a shirt and a jacket, but it was much rougher than most of the things you can find today.

Dealing with craftsmen on such a regular basis and being a craftsman in your own right, how do you feel about the place of craftsmanship, particularly artisanal craftsmanship in the modern age of efficiency and mass production?

Comparing craftsmanship with mass market is like comparing a truffles to astronaut food.

Isn’t it amazing that you can have an ice cream sandwich that will last 1,000 years and still taste good in space?


But the knowledge, experience, and harmony with nature that come together when fresh truffles melt over a plate of pasta represents centuries of culture.

The truffle is only the physical manifestation of something that is in some ways still mystical.

This is where craftsmanship has no peers. It is our connection to the past, living in the present, that informs the future.