It was the green knickers that did it. Hoisted high on porn-star hips, they struck a bum note among the yards of pink flesh. Whatever triple-X website Thomas Ruff cribbed the woman in nudes sh02 from, we can be pretty sure that her underwear - the colour and texture of cartoon frogs - came from Photoshop rather than Victoria's Secrets. Blown up a metre high, Ruff blurred and scumbled the original image, the high-res plasticity of porn giving way to a surface that's half painterly swooshes, half surveillance camera miasma.
Porn and the shadow side of paradise: Thomas Ruff's Nudes
Thomas Ruff | artnet
The difference between my predecessors and me is that they believed to have captured reality and I believe to have created a picture. We all lost, bit by bit, the belief in this so-called objective capturing of real reality. Each of my series has a visual idea behind it, which I develop during my research. Sometimes the development follows a straight line from A to B; sometimes something completely new and interesting shows up, which makes me leave the straight path and follow a more indirect one with new rules. Gagosian Gallery is pleased to present two exhibitions of new and recent photographs by Thomas Ruff. This is his first exhibition with the gallery.
Best known for his oversized, dead-pan portraits, his unmediated shots of commonplace interiors, and his seemingly straightforward photographs of architecture, Ruff has quietly approached many familiar genres, and proceeded to discreetly reinvent them. Ruff has an uncanny feel for the look of the ordinary—in people, places, and objects. However, his brand of photographic objectivity is not that purportedly practiced by photojournalists.
It was a paradise that turned out — isn't that the way with any paradise? Then a substitute paradise came along, one in which the idea of expulsion and exclusion was not imminent but immanent: online porn. I didn't see real porn of any kind until I was 34, when I stumbled on it by accident on TV in a hotel in Belgrade. I'd been told that porn was woman-hatred, but it didn't seem hateful or hate-filled. What it looked like was people having sex.