Thomas Ruff

Thomas Ruff (b. 1958, Germany) is a photographer whose work continues in the tradition established by Bernd and Hilla Becher. Ruff teaches at the Düsseldorf Art Academy, which is also where he works. His photographs examine the real value of the documentary image both in terms of its materiality (as a cluster of pixels) and in terms of its reliability. Ruff is known to be meticulous about the minutest details of his images which are known for their high finish level. He tends to choose his photographic apparatus according to his chosen subject or object. His work often appropriates images from other sources – erotic film posters, night vision photography equipment and police images. Ruff’s works are frequently exhibited in important international art spaces including the Venice Biennial and the Documenta in Kassel.

Related exhibition: Prima Facie


Thomas Ruff, Self Portrait, 1987, Cibachrome print

The collection