ma.r.s.

Thomas Ruff
October 9 – November 13, 2010

Exhibition view: Thomas Ruff, ma.r.s., Johnen Galerie, Berlin, 2010

Photo © Jens Ziehe

Exhibition view: Thomas Ruff, ma.r.s., Johnen Galerie, Berlin, 2010

Photo © Jens Ziehe

Exhibition view: Thomas Ruff, ma.r.s., Johnen Galerie, Berlin, 2010

Photo © Jens Ziehe

Exhibition view: Thomas Ruff, ma.r.s., Johnen Galerie, Berlin, 2010

Photo © Jens Ziehe

ma.r.s.

Thomas Ruff
Johnen Galerie, Berlin
October 9 – November 13, 2010
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Johnen Galerie is pleased to present the new series ma.r.s. by Thomas Ruff. The gallery has succeeded in bringing the first international presentation of these new works to Berlin. 

After the Cycles (since 2008) Thomas Ruff has taken on a new visual challenge. In the course of his research on the image-generating means of photography, Ruff came across high-resolution images of Mars, which were taken from a satellite with a HiRISE (High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment) camera and made accessible to everyone on the Internet by NASA.
 

Ruff first transforms the images, which are taken from the satellite (looking down), into the perspective of a traveller looking out of the aircraft at the planet. This gives the viewer the impression that he or she can view the surface of Mars from the closest possible distance. In addition, Ruff colors the black-and-white transmitted images so that the extraordinary nature of the landscapes is emphasized without changing their character. In this way, images of incredible beauty and strangeness of desert or crater landscapes are created, which are located on a distant planet and yet appear very familiar. Considering the discussions about the possibility of a generally accessible manned space flight in the near future, the images seem almost like a virtual anticipation of future travel images.

With the series ma.r.s., the examination of advanced technology with factual documentation and formal elegance in the work of Thomas Ruff is once again evident. His artistic interest has always been focused on the enormous collective efforts behind the development of new photographic techniques. With his new series, Ruff makes images created for a small scientific circle accessible to a larger audience. This is achieved not only by using the images themselves, but also quite decisively by editing them, which draws their aesthetic quality from the scientific models. The viewer is taken by the artist on a journey into the beauty of distant space. 

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