Wolfgang Tillmans: Multitudinal Pictures, Olamiju Fajemisin, δημοσίευση στο Flash Art [21/12/2022]Marilena Pateraki
Chance is banal. Immaterial. While it just so happened that photographer Wolfgang Tillmans was a teenager in the mid-sized West German industrial city of Remscheid as the “End of History” made its final approach, it was luck that led him to a copy shop with a Canon NP-9030 laser printer, an unusual machine in that it converted the source image into a digital signal which could then be further altered by the user. Variations on this procedure yielded Approaches (1987–88), a series of xerographic triptychs blown up by four hundred percent that formed the material for two solo exhibitions in Hamburg — his very first — at a popular gay and lesbian bar, Café Gnosa, and Fabrik Fotoforum in February and September 1988, respectively. Only then did Tillmans purchase his first camera — a 35mm Contax single-lens reflex, a simple, robust tool — though this was by no means his first encounter with the photographic device. Critics and the artist alike regard an abstract self-portrait made on a family holiday on the beach of the Atlantic coast of southwestern France — Lacanau (Self), 1986 — as his first “true” image, and even long before then, as a child, he pored over his father’s camera, holding it steady at the eye of his telescope in attempts to capture the patterns of the stars in the heavens. The same telescope was used by the artist to reproduce the twice-in-a-lifetime phenomenon of Venus traveling between the Sun and the Earth, albeit with a new, more sophisticated camera. Venus transit (2004) and Transit of Venus (2012) document the six-hour passage of the gaseous planet (seen in these images as a sharp, stubborn full-stop) before the sublime cutout of the Sun, rendered here a cool, dusty pink against the numbing blackness of space thanks to the use of a Mylar filter. Through the nonscientific and nonchronological results of this work — in some frames, the Sun is nudged off-center, its crisp outline stirred by the artist’s own touch on his equipment — Tillmans’s philosophy of storytelling can be understood as what Durga Chew-Bose describes as “[hanging] on instinct and the rejection of ceremony.” For if nothing else, a photographer’s work is to concede themself to fate, gesture, and all other manners of luck.1
Η συνέχεια εδώ.