Salerno I by Andreas Gursky

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Wednesday, January 24, 2018 - 15:37

In the 1990s, Gursky began to photograph the built environment, turning his attention to labour, scenes of industry and to large-scale environments or structures that he refers to as ‘aggregate states’ – a whole made up of repeating elements. Salerno I (1990) – which captures a busy harbour basin in an Italian port town – is a pivotal image for the artist.

Salerno I by Andreas Gursky

As he explains: ‘Salerno represented a change in direction. The thematic and completely straightforward moment’ was replaced with a ‘more abstract point of view.’ This abstraction is achieved by technical means: ‘By retreating further back from the subject and using a light, telephoto lens, the image composition becomes flatter, foreground and background merge into a single entity’. To the artist, this perspective is ‘democratic’: each element of the image is given equal importance.

Gursky exhibition page

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