[WORLDKINGS] Journey to seek extraordinary record holders around the world (P.58) – Thomas Demand (Germany) : Paper conceptual artist.


(WorldKings.org) Photographs can seem convincingly real or strangely artificial. The work of German photographer Thomas Demand achieves a disquieting balance between the two.

Thomas Cyrill Demand (born 1964) is a German sculptor and photographer. He currently lives and works in Berlin and Los Angeles, and teaches at the University of Fine Arts, Hamburg.

Having studied sculpture under Fritz Schwegler at the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf, Demand began his career as a sculptor. In 1993 he turned the tables, henceforth making constructions for the sole purpose of photographing them. Demand begins with a preexisting image culled from the media, usually of a political event, which he translates into a life-size model made of colored paper and cardboard. He thus describes himself not as a photographer, but as a conceptual artist for whom photography is an intrinsic part of his creative process

Once they have been photographed, the models are destroyed.

His originality has won him recognition as one of the most innovative artists of his generation.

Because Demand is working from models, the absence of people in his photographs is "conspicuous and thematic". The closest Demand has ever come to depicting people are the cut-out silhouettes of politicians and heads of state depicted in the picture frames arranged on Sir Edward Heath’s grand piano (Flügel/Grand Piano, 1993). Furthermore, every trace of language has completely vanished: the papers strewn across the work table and floor in Büro (Office) (1995) have no text on them; the labels next to the doorbells that are the subject of Hinterhaus (2005) are variously colored but bear no names.

According to moma.org

Mihan (Collect and edit) (World Records Union - WorldKings.org)


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