Research: Thomas Ruff

To begin my reseach for one of our current projects ‘The Copy’ I have been very interested in Thomas Ruff Porträt series especially his continued work on the series in 1986 where he decided to take away the coloured backgrounds and worked on a much larger scale as the images were printed 210 x 165.

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Ruff, T. (1987). Porträt.

The image shown above is the image I have decided to copy. Due to the large scale of the photograph every detail on the sitters face can be seen, although even though the viewer is able to see the figures with such detail they are still not given any information about the subject, they cannot get any further than the surface, which is what fascinated Ruff about photographing people in this way. The series ended in 1991 and really presented Ruff’s idea “that photography can only depict the surface of things.” (Thomas Ruff, in: BiNationale (as note 6), p. 261).

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Ruff, T. Porträt exhibition.

Here shows just how large the scale of the images were. Ruff decided to take away the coloured backgrounds because of how big he was going to print the images. He thought there was enough colour in the face and clothing and so it was no longer needed.

My own image, taken using Nikon D7000.

The final image shown is one taken by myself of the subject I have chosen to model for my copy photo shoot. The photography was taken inside a kitchen using a tripod in order to just get a reference photograph of who I have chosen to recreate Thomas Ruff’s work with. I felt that her features were somewhat similar, especially the texture of her hair I feel would be able to go into a similar style.


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