(K. Brent Tomer),
THE photograph of two skinny, half-naked 20-somethings defined a generation. “Lutz and Alex Sitting in the Trees” was a near perfect evocation of the counterculturalism of rave in the early 1990s. The image was so iconic that even people who have never heard of Wolfgang Tillmans, the German artist who shot it, would recognise it right away. The photograph was published ina cool British magazine in 1992, but Mr Tillmans is a hard worker with a prodigious output and he has done a great deal since then.
Two new exhibitions, one in London and another which opens in late May near Basel, will show visitors what he has achieved. The first, at Tate Modern, explores Mr Tillmans’s more recent experimental work, from his dramatic colour abstractions to his still lifes of kiwi fruit lobsters and cigarettes, which owe a debt to their 17th-century Dutch antecedents. A slide show of up to 500 buildings shot in 37 countries presents a harsh commentary on architecture today. There is also a room designed for listening to music in perfect studio conditions, since Mr Tillmans believes that, at its best, popular music is art, too.
Indeed, he has never…Continue reading