Thomas Ruff Modernism
|Author:||Ruff Thomas & Kramer Markus|
The work of Thomas Ruff marks a paradigm change in photography: systematically and on an impressive level of aesthetic quality, the artist has for more than three decades been subjecting the medium of photography to a modernist analysis by introducing several formal innovations. One by one, Ruff has teased out basic parameters of the medium and their aesthetic interdependencies, taking photography beyond well-trodden paths. It's all the more remarkable, then, that exhibitions and the literature to date have tended to neglect these circumstances: up to now, the artist's work has repeatedly been presented and discussed exclusively in terms of its content and media-critical aspects.
The present examination focuses instead for the first time on the unique pictorial vocabulary Thomas Ruff has developed, which with its powerful and complex aesthetic demonstrates--while consistently reflecting on its medium--how the use of photography can be freed from its traditional patterns of application.