In 1924, landscape photographer Tullio Locchi, also an esteemed war photographer and official photographer to the royal family, decided to found a studio and shop in the city center: Foto Locchi in Piazza Vittorio, today’s Piazza della Repubblica.
At Tullio’s premature death in 1926, only two years after he had opened his studio, his widow continued the activity and founded a company with her late husband’s closest collaborators, the Moscato-Corcos family.
Ultimately, it was Silvano Corcos
, co-director with his uncle Umberto as early as the late Twenties, who took over the reins and became the life and soul of the company.
Corcos, like Tullio Locchi a photographer to the royal family, was known not only for his technical expertise but also for his rare entrepreneurial acumen, which made Foto Locchi one of the most distinguished and renowned studios in Florence. So much so that this “bottega of photographic art and technique” became the city’s “official” photographer.
Foto Locchi’s lenses never missed a city event, and in an age when television was futuristic science, the three huge display windows in Piazza della Repubblica were the “screens” on which “live” coverage of major events in Florence appeared. The day after any event, Florentines could count on finding a comprehensive reportage on the shop’s notice boards. The storefront area was always crowded with people looking to see if they had been caught on film, or commenting or simply “watching” the event.
Ownership of the company has always remained with the Corcos family, today represented by Silvano’s daughter Deanna and her husband, Giampaolo Ghilardi, a photoreporter in his own right and today the proprietor. Since 1998, their daughter Erika, determined to give the database the international notoriety it so richly deserves, has joined her parents in management of the Archivio.