Andreas Gursky, born in Leipzig in 1955, is perhaps Germany’s most famous photographer. Having been a master pupil of one of the most important photographers of the post-war era, Bernd Becher, and the “Becher Class” named after him that also counted well-known names including Candida Höfer and Thomas Ruff among its ranks, from 2010 to 2018 Gursky himself taught a new generation of artists at the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf, though this time in free art.
In recent years Andreas Gursky’s works, which can be found in the world’s most important exhibition centers and galleries, have distanced themselves more and more from classical photography. They now feature heavily edited digital views of city and rural landscapes, as well as the interiors of urban buildings. Even his landscapes depict people, however, like the polluted river water in his “Bangkok” series or the almost sterile-looking straightened river in “Rhein II” (“Rhine II”), the most expensive photograph ever auctioned.
The artist often chooses a perspective from above, most commonly a bird’s eye view. From above the observer can recognize patterns and connections that are hidden from everyday perspectives. Gursky’s works target precisely this perspective from above or from outside. It is a view of the world in its entirety.
“What ultimately interests me isn’t fabricating reality, but reality itself. Emphasizing and accentuating it seems legitimate to me.” – Andreas Gursky