Digital Folklore

Wolfgang Tillmans @Tate Modern

Through initial research of Wolfgang Tillman I found he had an exhibition at the Tate Modern. A truly wonderful exhibition and so inspiring, chaotic and huge this exhibition is a look inside the world of Tillmans work and at times private life. The show takes up 14 rooms in the Tate Modern, just that fact shows the wealth of his work, photographs are present- ed in all different ways, extra large, small, medium, framed, unframed, on tables, attached with bulldog clips to the wall. Although some are framed most images are not and his presentation is something I took great inspiration from, theres the sense that Tillman values the image so much that he knows that the fancy frames or displays are irrelevant, it also made me feel as though he isn’t as pretentious as so many people in the art world, it makes his work feel accessible. Some images are high up, some are low down, its still well presented but its not trying to be the classic pompous photography show, it feels casual, relaxed and comfortable. Though its clear this is as perfectly planned and co-ordinated as it flows perfectly. The first thing that stood out to me about Tillmans work is the colour, quite average looking subjects look simply beautiful just because of the colours and tones. With more research I realised that Tillman worked within fashion photography in the 1990’s and at times this makes perfect sense considering the way he can make a simple pair of jeans on a staircase look like a beautiful image. As mentioned Tillman is politically engaged and there are many photos here about war, the refugee crisis, gender politics and gay rights. All of these images themselves could be a challenge to the era of fake news and manipulated media looked at within this project, the truth telling that is becoming a theme in my own work.

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