Thomas Ruff

thomas-ruff17-custom_nudes
thomas-ruff17-custom_nudes

Thomas Ruff (b. 1958), known for his deadpan portraits and gorgeous views of the night sky and architecture, is one of Germany's leading contemporary artist/photographers. Among his work is an exploration of the internet, that parallel visual universe teeming with sexuality of every flavor and variety. He gathers from that virtual playground erotic and often pornographic photographs that he subsequently manipulates in his computer, making beautiful--and disturbing--artwork from visual material that, for better or worse, is probably more abundant than any other type of image in our world today. The pictures, which are graphic and abstract at the same time, are accompanied by an excerpt from a forthcoming novel by controversial French writer Michel Houellebecq, whose work is similarly influenced by the sex industry. Reviewing the series in the Village Voice, Jerry Saltz wrote: "Ruff may think these images are analytic or objective, but they're also sweetly, luxuriantly visual...Sex slips into something ravishingly, optically comfortable, and these everyday, off-world images morph into parapaintings from the Planet Love."