Walther König. 2007. Hardcover with dust jacket. 216×305 mm. 432 pp. ISBN: 9783865601322. Condition: Very Good. One corner is a little bumped.
This monumental and beautifully designed monograph presents the most comprehensive view of the London-based photographer Wolfgang Tillmans’s work, featuring many photographic works and abstract “paintings” from the past five years that have never been published before.
When he is working on an exhibition or a publication, Tillmans displays and combines pictures on long tables in his studio so that the images are “held in position only by their own weight. The method of laying out two-dimensional objects on a table produces ‘clarity’ and allows perspective. A new text emerges through the combination of intrinsically different pieces of paper. The issues dealt with on these tables do not claim to be fully comprehensive and the items chosen do not profess to be definitive examples of their kind. Rather, this multi-vocal process allows me to amplify voices I feel need strengthening, contrasting them with their opposites and their neighbours.” This method has become a concept. In Manual the artist combines his own photographs, painterly works and texts together with already existing newspaper articles to create an associative, comprehensive view. The material is condensed into a complex artistic dialogue with various social and political themes, like AIDS or the question of absolute truth, which the artist has been exploring for years.
About the Artist
Few artists have shaped the scope of contemporary art and influenced a younger generation more than Wolfgang Tillmans. Since the early 1990s, his works have epitomised a new kind of subjectivity in photography, pairing intimacy and playfulness with social critique and the persistent questioning of existing values and hierarchies. Through his seamless integration of genres, subjects, techniques, and exhibition strategies, he has expanded conventional ways of approaching the medium and his practice continues to address the fundamental question of what it means to create pictures in an increasingly image-saturated world.