Contemporary German Photo Artists Andreas Gursky 's The Invention Of Photography

2004 Words Sep 22nd, 2016 9 Pages
The invention of photography has direct correlations to the notions of documentary. Historically, a photograph represented the means to preserve a snapshot of the world as accurately as possible. This suggests something in opposition to art, the photographer is not portraying his or her vision of the world, in so far as expressionist painters of the time would be. Instead, they are merely capturing and collating information, as a historian would. Slowly it can be seen that these notions began to fade; abolished were ideas that the medium was purely preservative, instead — and with greater use of manipulation — artists began to realise that photography was a valid form of art for portraying personal expression and to exhibit aesthetic qualities. Under this new understanding, photography began to take on some of the attributes of more traditional art and become more painterly. Though, there seems a battle raging always between realism and expression in photographic artworks, between the intrinsic nature of the medium and the ability to use it creatively. Contemporary German photo artists Andreas Gursky’s large format works epitomises this struggle, challenging viewers to engage with his work on a level beyond the documentary whilst retaining some of its qualities thematically.

In examining the photographic artworks of Gursky, it is integral to first look back at his development, the formative years that would come to mould and shape him as an artist. He was born in 1955 to a…

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