Past: October 20 → December 3, 2011
For this exhibition Wolfgang Tillmans presents new photographs taken during the past couple of years — pictures of his familiar environment intermixed with images taken around the world. Each exhibition is an opportunity for the artist to explore his repertoire of pictures and to read each image in the light of the others, giving us each time a renewed vision of our world and its complexity:
“Such networks of images and of meanings suggest the multivalent complexity of a life…In these situations Tillmans has found, not just a new and challenging way to work with photographs in the spaces of galleries and museums, but to underscore the depth of his engagment with contingency. By contingency I mean the way in which meaning, but also subjectivity, sexuality, gender and identity, are all unstable and temporary results of dynamic processes at the heart of which is difference”
David Deitcher “Lost and Found” in Wolfgang Tillmans, Taschen, 1998.
Large unframed inkjet prints and C-prints of various formats are taped or clipped directly to the gallery walls with no pre-defined hierarchy. If the works of this exhibition are mostly camera-based, abstract photographs appears in the constellation of images, notably with the Silver series. These camera-less works are the result of the paper reacting to light and chemical as well as mechanical processes. Made by feeding paper through a water-filled dirty processing machine they are either pure colour with infinite depth or mechanical pictures showing faint colours and traces of repetitive marks.
In his work Tillmans also embraces technological advancements, using digital imaging to capture natural phenomena, such as a waterfall (Iguazu, 2010) with its infinite frozen detail or making technology the subject matter of his photographs (TGV, 2010, Movin Cool, 2010).
Tillmans has always been fascinated with another instrument allowing image capture: the photocopier. He explores its abilities to multiply, magnify and transform images. The copy machine becomes is the source of numerous photographs and a video. Kopierer, 2010 is a static shot of an opened colour laser copier, performing copy fonctions during 10 minutes. The emerging light from the copier illuminates the space and is reflected in the open top as if it were a theatre curtain or a movie screen.
Born in Remscheid, Germany, Wolfgang Tillmans was the first photographer to have won the Turner Prize in 2000. He has had numerous solo exhibitions worldwide including the Serpentine Gallery, London; the Museum of Contemporary, Chicago; the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; Museo Tamayo, Mexico City; the Hirshhorn Museum, Washington; PS1 Contemporary Art Center, New York; the Tate Britain, London.
He lives and works in Berlin and London.