Luminous Landscape Forum

The Art of Photography => But is it Art? => Topic started by: Isaac on November 11, 2011, 06:45:01 PM

Title: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Isaac on November 11, 2011, 06:45:01 PM
Andreas Gursky's Rhein II sets photo record (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-15689652)
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rob C on November 15, 2011, 11:25:18 AM
I believe Gursky to be one man who has discovered how to manipulate the acquisitive madness within people. He must be as bemused by it all as am I.

Rob C
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rob C on November 18, 2011, 05:57:01 AM
I tend to think that the highly priced photography being bought isn't really being bought as 'art' at all, but as a sort of mutually accepted form of 'value' to replace the doubtful monetary markers that were valid until around '08; mutually accepted, of course, amongst those with the billions to protect.

Looking around me right now, I wonder how at ease I'd feel were I to win many millions on the lottery... here, within the Euro Zone? It could possibly be as frightening an experience as exhilarating.

Such 'art' was never intended for mere mortals; maybe we should just smile and forget it; better still, provide it!

Rob C
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on November 18, 2011, 08:40:57 AM
It demonstrates once again, as if another demonstration were necessary, that "fine art" is a marketing term having little to do with actual art. Christies probably could sell elephant poop to these people if it called it "fine art." Oh, wait, didn't a world-famous museum present elephant poop as fine art not long ago?
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Eric Myrvaagnes on November 18, 2011, 09:40:47 AM
It demonstrates once again, as if another demonstration were necessary, that "fine art" is a marketing term having little to do with actual art. Christies probably could sell elephant poop to these people if it called it "fine art." Oh, wait, didn't a world-famous museum present elephant poop as fine art not long ago?
Right!

So, Russ, are you planning to change your website's URL to something like "FineSnaps.com" and leave out the "Art?"   ;)

Eric
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on November 18, 2011, 10:27:25 AM
Remember, Eric. It's a marketing term. My web supposedly is for marketing. In an effort to boost sales I may even start offering elephant poop.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rob C on November 18, 2011, 12:43:18 PM
"I am suggesting that the price paid for a work of art becomes its absolute and authoritative value, even if the value the price implies is not particularly clear. It is presented without explanation -- the price is the explanation."

"Thus art has become a venue for the exhibition of money."

ART VALUES OR MONEY VALUES? (http://www.artnet.com/magazineus/features/kuspit/kuspit3-6-07.asp) by Donald Kuspit


That's a very interesting link that you posted, thanks very much!

Rob C
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: PierreVandevenne on November 19, 2011, 12:49:12 PM
"I am suggesting that the price paid for a work of art becomes its absolute and authoritative value, even if the value the price implies is not particularly clear. It is presented without explanation -- the price is the explanation."

Well, I guess this rule could also be applied to some cameras.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rob C on November 20, 2011, 04:46:16 AM
Well, I guess this rule could also be applied to some cameras.



Hence the unopened Leica boxes in the Japanese collections that one hears about.

What a shame that money keeps certain tools out of reach... need a revolution! Only joking about the revolution, though, we don't need more problems just yet.

Rob C
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Steve Weldon on November 20, 2011, 05:18:04 AM


Hence the unopened Leica boxes in the Japanese collections that one hears about.

What a shame that money keeps certain tools out of reach... need a revolution! Only joking about the revolution, though, we don't need more problems just yet.

Rob C

This has bothered me about certain factory track day cars for as long as I can remember.  Ford for instance makes a race ready car the average person could afford to buy and race on weekends.. makes it to meet all the requirements.  And then a bunch of "collectors" bids up the price to 4-5x the intended price and parks them with the plastic still on the seat.. never to race or in most cases make a single lap around a track.

Other than being an image from an accomplished photographer.. I still don't see anything in that image.  It's an image my wife would delete from her PNS.  And before someone says "then why didn't she take it?"  I think she did.  I like hers better.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rob C on November 20, 2011, 10:34:27 AM
"Then why didn't you take it?"

Another answer to the question could be that nobody else wanted to take Mr G's shots.

Rob C
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Eric Myrvaagnes on November 20, 2011, 01:03:26 PM
"Then why didn't you take it?"

Another answer to the question could be that nobody else wanted to take Mr G's shots.

Rob C
Exactly!

And if I had taken it, and blown it up to humongous size and mounted it to acrylic or whatever, I seriously doubt whether anybody would have paid over 4 million for it.

Eric
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Steve Weldon on November 20, 2011, 02:37:39 PM
That answer doesn't inform us about Mr G's shots - perhaps if others had wanted to take Mr G's shots that would suggest they were commonplace, and the fact that nobody else had that vision suggests that they may be extraordinary? (Or not.)

'Why, I ask, is my unmade bed just an unmade bed and hers is art? "Because you didn't say that yours was art and you didn't feel that it was. I saw it as art and felt that it was. I said that it was and showed that it was. I have transferred what I feel on to someone else looking at it. That's the alchemy. That's the magic. I was the person who had to have the conviction in the first place.'
Sounds more like the personal thoughts of an insane person.   It gets really old listening to people tell me a painting of a fresh pile of dog shite or Jesus wearing a Hello Kitty skirt is art.  Perhaps to the creators they feel it is, and I'll give them their due.  But I find it very sheep like when others claim their "art studdys" program enabled them to see art others can't see like they're in some secret club with one of a kind decoder rings. 

If someone thinks something they created is art I'd never be the one to tell them it isn't, to them it may very well be.  And if someone else wants to spend 4.3 million to buy it.. then good for them.  And if someone who took an "art studdys" program wants to go all elite on us and tell us he/she can see things we cannot.. then good for him/her.   But unlike the great majority of art displayed in museums the world over.. most people are just going to see it for what it really is.  Something my wife would have deleted on her PNS..   
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Slobodan Blagojevic on November 20, 2011, 02:45:58 PM
... someone who took an "art studdys" program...

You keep making fun of a non-native English speaker's misspelling (or typo). Not cool, Mr. Weldon, not cool.


P.S. And, for the sake of others, no, I am not talking about myself
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Steve Weldon on November 20, 2011, 02:59:40 PM
You keep making fun on a non-native English speaker's misspelling (or typo). Not cool, Mr. Weldon, not cool.


P.S. And, for the sake of others, no, I am not talking about myself
It is a bit out of line isn't it?  Irony is like that sometimes.  Before I go all elite on someone and tell them how my education gives me super powers and all.. I make sure to flip on the spell checker to make sure I spell "super powers" correctly.  I might not be the perfect speller in my own second languages, but my education does extend to the basics of technology if not the esoteric arts.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Steve Weldon on November 20, 2011, 03:00:20 PM
As does much practical science - for example, time running more slowly at high altitude than at sea level (http://www.astronomy.ohio-state.edu/~pogge/Ast162/Unit5/gps.html) ;-)
Or the world is round.  Got it..  ::)
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: jjj on November 20, 2011, 03:08:24 PM
Other than being an image from an accomplished photographer.. I still don't see anything in that image.  It's an image my wife would delete from her PNS.  And before someone says "then why didn't she take it?"  I think she did.  I like hers better.
To appreciate a Gursky or say a Gregory Crewsdon print you have to see them in the flesh, a 800x600px online version is not the same thing at all. In fact many of my own images loose their impact when reduced for web as they lose their texture. I've seen a Gursky similar to the record breaking shot and it stuck in my mind more than many other photos I've seen in exhibitions.

Whether it is worth the money paid is another argument again and just because a work of art is not to your taste does not disqualify it from being art or being good. I cannot stand Dali's work [with a few exceptions], yet I would never be arrogant enough to say it is rubbish/not art.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Steve Weldon on November 20, 2011, 06:48:24 PM
To appreciate a Gursky or say a Gregory Crewsdon print you have to see them in the flesh, a 800x600px online version is not the same thing at all. In fact many of my own images loose their impact when reduced for web as they lose their texture. I've seen a Gursky similar to the record breaking shot and it stuck in my mind more than many other photos I've seen in exhibitions.

Whether it is worth the money paid is another argument again and just because a work of art is not to your taste does not disqualify it from being art or being good. I cannot stand Dali's work [with a few exceptions], yet I would never be arrogant enough to say it is rubbish/not art.

a.  I accept this.  Images, properly composed, are visualized at a certain viewing size for maximum effect.  And I accept this guy must create some great images.  This just isn't one of them at any size. 

b.   My belief is that anything in this world, even a deleted image from a PNS, is worth exactly what someone is willing to pay for it.  I might think someone is spending their money unwisely, but that would be merely a personal observation and not a reflection on the art itself.  Would I have paid 4.3 million (assuming I could afford to) for this image?  Not on your life.  I wouldn't have paid anything, other than to pay someone to carry it to the rubbish bin. 

c.  So you've never offered an honest opinion in reference to "art?"  Or are you saying you've never seen a piece of rubbish masquerading as art?   IMO.. art doesn't exist without critics.  Critics critique and by doing so set the relative value (not necessarily monetary) of art.  It devalues art in general when we, for whatever reason, fail to give that honest critique we become responsible for when we endeavor to become a member of the community.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: dchew on November 20, 2011, 07:40:40 PM
IMO.. art doesn't exist without critics.  

Hmm. I don't agree with that.  I think Art is defined by the creator's intent.  If it was created as a piece of art, then that's what it is. Regardless of how good or bad, accepted or critiqued, expensive or cheap or free.

Dave
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Steve Weldon on November 20, 2011, 08:15:37 PM
Hmm. I don't agree with that.  I think Art is defined by the creator's intent.  If it was created as a piece of art, then that's what it is. Regardless of how good or bad, accepted or critiqued, expensive or cheap or free.

Dave
What "defines art" was not questioned.  Or defined.  We've got tons of threads in this forum alone seeking to define what constitutes art.  I'm not getting into that.

What I said was that "art cannot exist without critics."  (hint: This is a "if a tree falls in the forest" type of comment)  Or in other words.. every person whose senses (only the first five) falls upon that which is created.. judges it.  They do this without thought, instinctively as we'd admire a beautiful woman or be repulsed by a hideous mutant, or perhaps with intent, but we do judge.

So why such negative (and all too often elitist) reactions to those who provide an honest negative opinion/reaction to this image?  And why is it from those who claim to be educated in the arts?  Frankly I've been disappointed by those who claim to be so educated.  To a person they appear unable to respond without direct or indirect insults towards those who see the image differently.  And their only offered reasoning centers around "you don't understand because you're not educated.."  And they say this having no idea what the other persons educational background might be.  They just make the leap in reasoning that if someone doesn't see things the way they do.. then they can't possibly be educated.  Words speak loudly. 
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Steve Weldon on November 20, 2011, 10:40:10 PM
Precisely which comments, in this discussion of Gursky's photo, do you claim are the "negative (and all too often elitist) reactions"?

Please quote the exact words, so I don't have to guess what you mean.


a.  There was another thread I haven't looked at since last week where the insults were very direct and severe.  I'm sure you can find it. 

b.  I promise, you won't be left guessing.




Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Slobodan Blagojevic on November 20, 2011, 11:48:34 PM
Steve et al.,

Why don't we turn the table for a moment? If that "crappy" image is not worthy of millions, which one, in your opinion, is? Which one of contemporary landscape photos you think raises the bar and sets the standard of being "true" art, worthy of both adoration of millions of the masses and millions of dollars?
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rob C on November 21, 2011, 03:52:52 AM
Slobodan, the answer is short and simple: none.

Rob C
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rob C on November 21, 2011, 09:22:27 AM
http://www.getty.edu/art/gettyguide/artObjectDetails?artobj=112574&handle=li (http://www.getty.edu/art/gettyguide/artObjectDetails?artobj=112574&handle=li)




Art or artifice?

Rob C
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Steve Weldon on November 21, 2011, 10:12:57 PM
Steve et al.,

Why don't we turn the table for a moment? If that "crappy" image is not worthy of millions, which one, in your opinion, is? Which one of contemporary landscape photos you think raises the bar and sets the standard of being "true" art, worthy of both adoration of millions of the masses and millions of dollars?

That's an excellent question.. though when I speak of what an image is worth I'm thinking of 'to me' and not on the general market. And like I said, I didn't want to get into the question on what's art or not as it seems more a personal interpretation than one we'll all agree with.   I really have little knowledge on the market value of contemporary photos.  Worth millions?  Probably none, but I remain open.  There are probably plenty of "utility" purpose photographs people would pay millions for, and they could be made artistic but I don't think that's what you're asking for. 
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Steve Weldon on November 21, 2011, 10:17:16 PM
I searched out and read through the "Record for any photo sold at auction set in NYC" (http://www.luminous-landscape.com/forum/index.php?topic=59352.0) comments.

As far as I can tell, there's very little difference between what you describe as "honest negative opinion" and what you describe as "direct or indirect insults".

The main difference seems to be that when you speak about others you think it's "honest negative opinion" but when others speak about you then you think it's "direct or indirect insults".
Isaac.. you can do better than that.  Please be reasonable.  You don't immediately see that the main difference is that when discussing the image in question and giving opinions.. we were critiquing a third party who put an image out there to be critiqued.  And the direct and indirect insults were aimed personally at those who made them and were not referenced towards an image.  Or in more simple terms everyone, positive and negative opinions, were directed at an image.  The insults were directed at each other.

With such discussions intellectual honesty is key.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Steve Weldon on November 21, 2011, 10:21:52 PM
It gets just as old listening
Let's elevate this discussion a bit shall we?
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Mike D. B. on December 03, 2011, 06:04:29 AM
Christies probably could sell elephant poop to these people if it called it "fine art." Oh, wait, didn't a world-famous museum present elephant poop as fine art not long ago?

The elephant poop might be a worthwhile project!  I recall in the 70s, where a friend who worked for an insurance company had to insure an artist's exhibition for an unbelievable amount.  The exhibit was cans of "Artist's Sh...".  So nothing seems impossible.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Artist%27s_shit (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Artist%27s_shit)
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rob C on December 03, 2011, 11:58:50 AM
The elephant poop might be a worthwhile project!  I recall in the 70s, where a friend who worked for an insurance company had to insure an artist's exhibition for an unbelievable amount.  The exhibit was cans of "Artist's Sh...".  So nothing seems impossible.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Artist%27s_shit (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Artist%27s_shit)



I seem to remember seeing photographs of the tins in which the stuff was being kept; also remember seeing a tv segment where an 'artist' did, indeed, use elephant shit to make his pictures. But then, if it goes like cowdung, it can always be used - in extremis - to create a little warmth in the grate. Not a bad investment in these days of rising fossil fuel prices.

Rob C
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Slobodan Blagojevic on December 03, 2011, 12:42:05 PM
You guys seem to be pooh-poohing the poop? Especially the elephant one. A poopy idea, at best. It is a recyclable and valuable product, which can be used for (ultimately) artistic purposes, like paper (http://new.poopoopaper.com/).
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rob C on December 03, 2011, 02:45:51 PM
You guys seem to be pooh-poohing the poop? Especially the elephant one. A poopy idea, at best. It is a recyclable and valuable product, which can be used for (ultimately) artistic purposes, like paper (http://new.poopoopaper.com/).



Slobodan, I never cease to be amazed by the diversity of the places where you have planted your feet!

Rob C
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Graystar on December 04, 2011, 07:51:00 AM
http://www.christies.com/lotfinder/andreas-gursky-rhein-ii/5496716/lot/lot_details.aspx

From the "Lot Notes"...
"A breathtaking masterpiece of scale and wonderment, as well as the icon of Andreas Gursky's pioneering photographic oeuvre, Rhein II, enwraps the viewer in the sheer beauty of its scene."


From the "Overview"...
"On occasion, Christie's has a direct financial interest in lots consigned for sale which may include guaranteeing a minimum price or making an advance to the consignor that is secured solely by consigned property. This is such a lot."

Gotta say though...the parallelism of those lines is simply amazing!  And so straight!  I’d KILL for straight lines like that!

 :P
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: kencameron on October 10, 2012, 06:41:50 PM
Like Isaac, I get a bit weary of the "all modern art is rubbish" brigade. This is probably not a view that anyone would admit to holding, and I am sure they would have a good case and be able to quote modern artists they respect. It is more a question of tone, the exchange of coterie jokes about dog poop etc, and of an apparent eagerness to denounce something without having taken the trouble to understand it. I find my eyes rolling, entirely of their own accord.

It's not that I don't think there is rubbish around. It is more because I have the personal experience of thinking something to be rubbish and then discovering myself to have missed the point; and because the history of art over the last two hundred years is full of examples of work being denounced as rubbish by the great and the good and then discovered to be wonderful by the next generation of the great and the good. There is a case for a bit of caution and humility, initially at least. Then, when you have felt anything there is to feel and formed a view, by all means go for it and express it forcefully.

I also think that education has its uses. I say this not to reflect on anyone else's views on any artist or subject - I don't know anything about anyone else's education -  but rather as a reflection of my own experience. The artists I like I have liked at first glance, but then I have found that studying them greatly enhances my pleasure. This may have nothing to do with universities - my own experience has been that academic fine art courses are a mixed blessing.

I also think there are conversations you can't have without knowing something about the history of the ideas that are in play and that (self-)education (the best kind) is the only way to get that knowledge. People who don't have it sometimes get resentful and lash out. Even on Lula, you sometimes meet the spiritual heirs of Benjamin Jowett, about whom an admirer wrote "I am the master of Balliol College/What I don't know, isn't knowledge".

I would need to see the Gursky on the wall in order to discover whether I like it or not. Minimalist works generally don't come across on a small screen. Late Rothko would be my case in point. I used to think them rubbish, until I spent an hour in a room full of them. I am sure there will be someone here who does think them rubbish - no doubt after careful consideration  ;)
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on October 10, 2012, 09:17:56 PM
I agree, Ken. I'll go further: I think education is a key that unlocks all sorts of experiences in the art world you'd otherwise pass by. Besides that, art history is fascinating stuff.

I think Raul summed it up. Certainly Gursky has done some fine work, though Rhein II is a long way from fine work. But it seems to me that the bottom line is there's a huge disconnect between art and the art market. I've already explained why, so I won't go back over it.

Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Fips on October 11, 2012, 03:26:17 AM
Quote
I also think that education has its uses. I say this not to reflect on anyone else's views on any artist or subject - I don't know anything about anyone else's education -  but rather as a reflection of my own experience. The artists I like I have liked at first glance, but then I have found that studying them greatly enhances my pleasure. This may have nothing to do with universities - my own experience has been that academic fine art courses are a mixed blessing.

Absolutely. But I get even more pleasure out of art which I initially didn't like or 'get'. Case in point are Bernd and Hilla Becher for me. I guess their work is something that is almost impossible to 'get' without learning about their motivation and intentions.

Regarding Gursky, I wouldn't describe him as minimalistic, although 'Rhein II' or the Bangkok series certainly are. But for me his best images, like 'Sao Paolo Se' for example, are rather gigantic, photographic Where's Waldos. Absolutely stunning too see in person.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rhossydd on October 11, 2012, 04:50:23 AM
I would need to see the Gursky on the wall in order to discover whether I like it or not. Minimalist works generally don't come across on a small screen.
Nice to finally see some reason in this thread.

I suspect most of the Gursky detractors in this thread have never actually seen a real Gursky print.

A significant part of the impact of his work is the shear size of the works and the astonishing amount of detail they contain even at very close viewing distances. Plus the quality of the print making is exemplary.
When you stand in front of one, it really is an exceptional experience. Once you've done that you'll understand why his work can command such extreme prices.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: kencameron on October 11, 2012, 05:30:50 AM
Regarding Gursky, I wouldn't describe him as minimalistic, although 'Rhein II' or the Bangkok series certainly are. But for me his best images, like 'Sao Paolo Se' for example, are rather gigantic, photographic Where's Waldos. Absolutely stunning too see in person.

You are absolutely right of course - I really only meant the example at the head of the thread, and registered it as untypical. "Photographic Where's Waldos" is nice - I don't promise not to plagiarize it ;)
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: John Gellings on November 29, 2012, 08:05:23 AM
Exactly!

And if I had taken it, and blown it up to humongous size and mounted it to acrylic or whatever, I seriously doubt whether anybody would have paid over 4 million for it.

Eric

If you did it prior to him, you may have had a chance. 
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: petermfiore on December 09, 2012, 05:33:15 PM
If you did it prior to him, you may have had a chance. 



In our world today it's who is FIRST and the rest consigned to the dust bin.
Both true and sad.

Peter
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Eric Myrvaagnes on December 09, 2012, 06:45:16 PM
If you did it prior to him, you may have had a chance. 
But only if I had his agents and/or contacts in the "Art" world.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: petermfiore on December 09, 2012, 06:57:55 PM
But only if I had his agents and/or contacts in the "Art" world.


Also very true.

Peter
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: tim wolcott on December 25, 2012, 12:20:54 AM
Although the images look very nice.  I hope they enjoy them for the time they have them.  At my calculations of 4.3 million dollars for a print.  At the rate they fade it looks like they are leasing them for 300,000 dollars a year.  Great investment.  Its like buying fine furniture with termites in them.  

Chromagenic Prints really.  With pigment printing since 1991 and they still make prints with very fade-able dyes.  I Hope they have fun getting sued.  

Read the article Why C prints fade.  Tim Wolcott
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Fips on January 08, 2013, 12:38:33 PM
The oldest C-print of Gursky which I have seen is Montparnasse from 1993 and I it still looks great. Most of his newer work is printed with pigment ink.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: John Gellings on January 09, 2013, 08:44:05 AM
Although the images look very nice.  I hope they enjoy them for the time they have them.  At my calculations of 4.3 million dollars for a print.  At the rate they fade it looks like they are leasing them for 300,000 dollars a year.  Great investment.  Its like buying fine furniture with termites in them.  

Chromagenic Prints really.  With pigment printing since 1991 and they still make prints with very fade-able dyes.  I Hope they have fun getting sued.  

Read the article Why C prints fade.  Tim Wolcott

Surely you've been to the museum and have seen early color photos no?
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: tim wolcott on January 10, 2013, 12:15:25 PM
Sure I have but these are not early photos.  These are from recent mid 1990's at the latest.Really instills faith that the rest of his work has any merits or value.  Its like selling fine furniture with termites in it.  

By the way early color photography from the late 1800's and early 1900's are very nice to this day.  And that photography was made with pigments.  The only reason his prints have this over inflated value is thru manipulation by powerful european gallery owners.  "Not that there is anything wrong with that."

Remember value is over time can only be achieved by longevity.  

So ask yourself this question.  Do you disclose to the buyer/client that the artwork they are about to purchase that it fades 10% every 2-12 years.  Would they BUY IT.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Walt Roycraft on January 15, 2013, 05:40:14 PM
'Why, I ask, is my unmade bed just an unmade bed and hers is art? "Because you didn't say that yours was art and you didn't feel that it was. I saw it as art and felt that it was. I said that it was and showed that it was. I have transferred what I feel on to someone else looking at it. That's the alchemy. That's the magic. I was the person who had to have the conviction in the first place.'

Where is this quote from, may I ask?
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Isaac on January 15, 2013, 08:15:23 PM
Quote the first sentence and Google finds - The Scotsman, Friday 11 July 2008 (http://www.scotsman.com/news/i-really-know-what-i-m-talking-about-i-m-a-brilliant-f-ing-artist-tracey-emin-interview-1-1434721)

As for originality, The Unmade Bed (http://metmuseum.org/Collections/search-the-collections/190012532) Imogen Cunningham, 1957.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Walt Roycraft on January 16, 2013, 11:23:18 AM
I always hate it when people ask a question without googleing it first!
Stupid me.
Thanks for the easy answer.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RedwoodGuy on February 06, 2013, 12:33:00 PM
Like Isaac, I get a bit weary of the "all modern art is rubbish" brigade. This is probably not a view that anyone would admit to holding, and I am sure they would have a good case and be able to quote modern artists they respect. It is more a question of tone, the exchange of coterie jokes about dog poop etc, and of an apparent eagerness to denounce something without having taken the trouble to understand it. I find my eyes rolling, entirely of their own accord.

It's not that I don't think there is rubbish around. It is more because I have the personal experience of thinking something to be rubbish and then discovering myself to have missed the point; and because the history of art over the last two hundred years is full of examples of work being denounced as rubbish by the great and the good and then discovered to be wonderful by the next generation of the great and the good. There is a case for a bit of caution and humility, initially at least. Then, when you have felt anything there is to feel and formed a view, by all means go for it and express it forcefully.

I also think that education has its uses. I say this not to reflect on anyone else's views on any artist or subject - I don't know anything about anyone else's education -  but rather as a reflection of my own experience. The artists I like I have liked at first glance, but then I have found that studying them greatly enhances my pleasure. This may have nothing to do with universities - my own experience has been that academic fine art courses are a mixed blessing.

I also think there are conversations you can't have without knowing something about the history of the ideas that are in play and that (self-)education (the best kind) is the only way to get that knowledge. People who don't have it sometimes get resentful and lash out. Even on Lula, you sometimes meet the spiritual heirs of Benjamin Jowett, about whom an admirer wrote "I am the master of Balliol College/What I don't know, isn't knowledge".

I would need to see the Gursky on the wall in order to discover whether I like it or not. Minimalist works generally don't come across on a small screen. Late Rothko would be my case in point. I used to think them rubbish, until I spent an hour in a room full of them. I am sure there will be someone here who does think them rubbish - no doubt after careful consideration  ;)
One of the most thoughtful responses I've seen to the many Rhein II internet discussion I have followed. Well reasoned, well written and concise!
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Ray on February 10, 2013, 12:07:17 AM
Aren't there a few points you guys seem to be ignoring?

(1) The print is huge. It's mounted on glass approximately 6ft 9ins high and 11ft 8ins wide.

(2) The print is a genuine artistic creation according to my interpretation of Rob C's standards. That is, the scene (as a whole) doesn't exist in reality. It was digitally manipulated. Not only were dog walkers and cyclists removed, (there was probably a constant stream of them) but a factory building was also cloned out.

(3) The viewer is not invited to consider a specific place along the river but rather an almost 'platonic' ideal of the body of water as it navigates the landscape.

(4) Many of the people who can afford such expensive works of art as this, have probably spent most of their time making money, living almost exclusively in very artificial environments in congested, bustling cities.

They are probably so out of touch with the natural environment, if you were to confront them with a large image of a single blade of grass, they would probably swoon in ecstasy.  ;D
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: kencameron on February 10, 2013, 03:58:59 PM
Quote the first sentence and Google finds - The Scotsman, Friday 11 July 2008 (http://www.scotsman.com/news/i-really-know-what-i-m-talking-about-i-m-a-brilliant-f-ing-artist-tracey-emin-interview-1-1434721)

As for originality, The Unmade Bed (http://metmuseum.org/Collections/search-the-collections/190012532) Imogen Cunningham, 1957.
Nice links, thanks. I would argue that the existence of Imogen Cunningham's elegant B&W print, with its sheet referencing drapery in painting etc, doesn't really call in question the originality of Tracey Emin turning her actual smelly bed into a "work of art". OTOH, I also think originality is ultimately just an aesthetic characteristic rather than an aesthetic virtue.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Isaac on February 10, 2013, 08:47:17 PM
I think we should wonder about possible associations, just as seeing Excusado (http://www.sfmoma.org/images/artwork/large/85.420_01_b02.jpg) should make us wonder about Marcel Duchamp ;-)
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Ray on February 10, 2013, 09:07:26 PM
Which guys?

Dear me, Isaac! The question, "Aren't there a few points you guys seem to be ignoring?" was merely a general expression in common language of my impression, after skipping through the responses in this thread, that essential questions about this photograph that occurred to me, were not being addressed.

However, if you wish to get philosophical, the answer to your question would be... 'most guys on most subjects throughout the ages, and during the present time'.

To get back to the topic, Eric made a reference to the print's humongus size, without mentioning how large, and Kencameron mentioned he'd reserve his judgement until he'd seen it full-size.

If one accepts the recommended viewing distance from a print as being 1.5x its diagonal, then Gursky's 12ft wide Rhine II should be ideally viewed from a distance of 20ft or more. The sheer size alone makes the print more suitable for wealthy people who can afford to live in mult-million dollar mansions containing at least one huge room.

Other issues that occurred to me, simply because of my general interest in photography, are the resolution of this huge print and the type of camera used. If the scene was shot with a single frame from Medium Format film, then the print might appear rather fuzzy from distances closer than 20ft, depending on the type of sharpening applied.

Don't many people, particularly photographers, like to examine large prints from close up? I haven't been able to find any 100% crops of this Gursky print.

The general outrage and amazement that such a high price could be paid for something which is essentially a photograph, despite its huge size and the artistic manipulation involved in the processing, is perhaps overblown.

Things that are either scarce or unique have a history of attracting ridiculously high prices, such as rare postage stamps, a pot of gold, or lumps of highly compressed carbon, often referred to as diamonds.

I ask myself, which is more ludicrous, paying $4.7 million for an impressively large print depicting a very peaceful and idealized scene across the Rhine River, which you would rarely find in the real world due to the ever-present dog-walkers, cyclists, pedestrians and occasional factory... or, paying $4.7 million (or more) for a lump of highly compressed and polished carbon which merely glitters, and which is usually locked up in a safe out of sight, for security reasons?

Another issue is the reproducibility of the Rhine II print. A photograph of a painting is still a photograph and the differences between the two can be easily discerned. But a photograph of a photograph can be visually indistinguishable from the original, without forensic testing.

If I were to own this print from Gursky, one of the first things I'd do is make a copy of it. I'd even be prepared to buy the best Nikon prime to use on my D800E, and take multiple shots of it for stitching, so I could capture even the texture of the photographic paper used for the original.  ;D

Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: kencameron on February 11, 2013, 04:00:02 PM
I think we should wonder about possible associations, just as seeing Excusado (http://www.sfmoma.org/images/artwork/large/85.420_01_b02.jpg) should make us wonder about Marcel Duchamp ;-)
Nice one. You've got me wondering.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: kencameron on February 11, 2013, 04:20:29 PM
I ask myself, which is more ludicrous, paying $4.7 million for an impressively large print ... or, paying $4.7 million (or more) for a lump of highly compressed and polished carbon...
Depends what you get when you sell them. Market value is market value. If you are saying that some of the outcomes of the market are ludicrous, or (much) worse, sure. But where would we be without it? Somewhere nasty, brutish and short, IMO.

Still not sure what points I was ignoring - or even if I was one of the guys who ignored them  ;)
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Ray on February 11, 2013, 09:50:44 PM
Still not sure what points I was ignoring - or even if I was one of the guys who ignored them  ;)

Let's be clear. I haven't accused anyone of ignoring any points. I merely asked the question, "Aren't there a few points you guys seem to be ignoring?"

If anyone wants to answer, No, then fine. However, it might be a bit arrogant to answer 'No, period', because there will usually prove to be at least a few points that most people will ignore on any matter raised. An alternative answer could be, "I might have missed a few points, but none of those that you mentioned."

Quote
Depends what you get when you sell them. Market value is market value. If you are saying that some of the outcomes of the market are ludicrous, or (much) worse, sure. But where would we be without it? Somewhere nasty, brutish and short, IMO.

The point I'm trying to make here is that we should distinguish between a commodity which is primarily used as a substitute for money, that is, something which increases in value as money does when deposited in a bank account, and something which in it's own right, independent of any price tag, produces a sense of joy, or peace, or contemplative calm, or wonder etc.

For example, if one is a multibillionaire and has bought a nice mansion with extensive gardens for $80 million, and has spent a further $20 million refurbishing, decorating and lanscaping the place, then an additional $4.7 million to create a spectacular view of the Rhine River, creating the impression that the room where the print is located actually has a window overlooking that peaceful and serene river, could be considered as money well-spent, as opposed to a few diamonds or a few kilograms of gold bullion stored out of sight in a safe.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: kencameron on February 11, 2013, 11:55:00 PM

The point I'm trying to make here is that we should distinguish between a commodity which is primarily used as a substitute for money, that is, something which increases in value as money does when deposited in a bank account, and something which in it's own right, independent of any price tag, produces a sense of joy, or peace, or contemplative calm, or wonder etc.

For example, if one is a multibillionaire and has bought a nice mansion with extensive gardens for $80 million, and has spent a further $20 million refurbishing, decorating and lanscaping the place, then an additional $4.7 million to create a spectacular view of the Rhine River, creating the impression that the room where the print is located actually has a window overlooking that peaceful and serene river, could be considered as money well-spent, as opposed to a few diamonds or a few kilograms of gold bullion stored out of sight in a safe.

Ah, I understand. A fair distinction, reminding us that there is more than one kind of value. Although of course there may be people for whom the knowledge that they have diamonds or gold bullion stored out of sight in a safe would produce a sense of joy, or peace, or contemplative calm, or wonder. Although I wouldn't personally go that quite that far (except maybe as to the wonder, given the usual state of my finances), my own feelings would be probably be at least positive.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on February 12, 2013, 10:02:10 AM
People who collect Gursky's photographs or Pollock's drippings aren't collecting art, they're collecting objects, in the same way coin collectors aren't collecting coins because they're valuable as coins but because they're valuable as objects. Art collectors would be much better off collecting coins. An art object hanging on a wall easily can be vandalized by a vandal or destroyed in a fire, but a coin properly secured is really hard to damage. Besides that, a coin can show another collector how obscenely wealthy you must be just as effectively as a canvas full of drips can. A thousand years from now nobody will have a clue who Andreas Gursky was or who Jackson Pollock was, but a collector may still have your coins in his collection, and those coins will be worth trillions (mainly because of Ben Bernanke).
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Isaac on February 12, 2013, 11:19:40 AM
A fair distinction, reminding us that there is more than one kind of value.

"I am suggesting that the price paid for a work of art becomes its absolute and authoritative value, even if the value the price implies is not particularly clear. It is presented without explanation -- the price is the explanation."

"Thus art has become a venue for the exhibition of money."

ART VALUES OR MONEY VALUES? (http://www.artnet.com/magazineus/features/kuspit/kuspit3-6-07.asp) by Donald Kuspit
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: nemo295 on February 12, 2013, 04:31:24 PM
People who collect Gursky's photographs or Pollock's drippings aren't collecting art, they're collecting objects, in the same way coin collectors aren't collecting coins because they're valuable as coins but because they're valuable as objects.

In your opinion, Russ. You forgot to add that. No one is going to buy a Gursky or a Pollock who wouldn't love seeing it on their wall. I suspect such collectors regard the art they buy as being both art and an investment.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: WalterEG on February 12, 2013, 04:50:25 PM
Surely the trickle-down effect of art market prices for photography (and any other art for that matter) inures eventually to the snappers who fancy flogging a print or two for a quid or two.

Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: kencameron on February 13, 2013, 12:38:23 AM
"I am suggesting that the price paid for a work of art becomes its absolute and authoritative value, even if the value the price implies is not particularly clear. It is presented without explanation -- the price is the explanation."

"Thus art has become a venue for the exhibition of money."

ART VALUES OR MONEY VALUES? (http://www.artnet.com/magazineus/features/kuspit/kuspit3-6-07.asp) by Donald Kuspit

A good quote from an interesting article which I enjoyed reading when someone (probably you, Isaac) linked to it on another thread. A reductio ad absurdum of the argument would be that if I don't know what a work of art has sold for, I can't form an opinion as to its merit. Or that galleries should put valuations on all their paintings to help us decide whether we like them. I am not sure Kuspit is saying anything like that. He seems to be talking about how the Art Market works, which is an interesting subject, but IMO not one which entirely displaces aesthetics.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Isaac on February 13, 2013, 12:58:31 AM
A reductio ad absurdum of the argument would be that if I don't know what a work of art has sold for, I can't form an opinion as to its merit.
We can always guess what was paid for it.

Or that galleries should put valuations on all their paintings to help us decide whether we like them.
If it's only a matter of Like we can defer to Facebook without mentioning art at all.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: jjj on February 13, 2013, 09:24:18 AM
People who collect Gursky's photographs or Pollock's drippings aren't collecting art, they're collecting objects, in the same way coin collectors aren't collecting coins because they're valuable as coins but because they're valuable as objects.
Well this may come as a bit of a surprise to you but some people actually like the work of artists that you do not. And then some of those people who like these artists whose work you sneer at will also purchase what they admire.
Don't forget before art investors which is the term you really should have used [who are quite different from art collectors who do like what they purchase], only invest in art that has become valuable because initially people liked it and then bought it and thus gave it value.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: jjj on February 13, 2013, 09:50:11 AM
To get back to the topic, Eric made a reference to the print's humongus size, without mentioning how large, and Kencameron mentioned he'd reserve his judgement until he'd seen it full-size.
I've seen Gursky's work in the flesh, so to speak and also work by Gregory Crewsdon and seeing full sized prints of their work is very, very different from seeing a much smaller reproduction and they make far more sense then.  Not to mention the fact that reproductions of even smaller prints may not do the image justice. I saw a B&W print of an injured soldier in a Manchester art gallery some years back. Now I'd seen this shot numerous times in magazines, but the actual print [50x30cm] had a depth missed out in reproductions and was far more moving and engaging as a result.
I think it is very hard to judge any artwork until you've actually seen it for yourself, as in my experiences it's like the difference between riding a roller coaster yourself or watching a video of someone else riding one.

Quote
If one accepts the recommended viewing distance from a print as being 1.5x its diagonal, then Gursky's 12ft wide Rhine II should be ideally viewed from a distance of 20ft or more. The sheer size alone makes the print more suitable for wealthy people who can afford to live in mult-million dollar mansions containing at least one huge room.
Nice to see someone put such work into proper context.

Quote
Other issues that occurred to me, simply because of my general interest in photography, are the resolution of this huge print and the type of camera used. If the scene was shot with a single frame from Medium Format film, then the print might appear rather fuzzy from distances closer than 20ft, depending on the type of sharpening applied.

Don't many people, particularly photographers, like to examine large prints from close up? I haven't been able to find any 100% crops of this Gursky print.
Most large images when viewed close, don't look good, but who cares, they are meant to be looked at from a distance and if they look good there, well then they look good. Film and advertising posters look particularly awful when viewed close rather than at their intended distance. Do people moan about Seurat's dots or Van Gogh's brush stokes being a bit coarse when viewed from several centimetres?
Anyway Gursky and Crewsdon both IIRC use 10x8 cameras.

Quote
The general outrage and amazement that such a high price could be paid for something which is essentially a photograph, despite its huge size and the artistic manipulation involved in the processing, is perhaps overblown.
Things that are either scarce or unique have a history of attracting ridiculously high prices, such as rare postage stamps, a pot of gold, or lumps of highly compressed carbon, often referred to as diamonds.
I ask myself, which is more ludicrous, paying $4.7 million for an impressively large print depicting a very peaceful and idealized scene across the Rhine River, which you would rarely find in the real world due to the ever-present dog-walkers, cyclists, pedestrians and occasional factory... or, paying $4.7 million (or more) for a lump of highly compressed and polished carbon which merely glitters, and which is usually locked up in a safe out of sight, for security reasons?
A very sensible perspective.
And also worth bearing in mind that diamonds are not actually that scarce, but the source of nearly all diamonds is a single company who manipulates the market to suit their own profit margins.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Ray on February 13, 2013, 11:21:38 PM
Well this may come as a bit of a surprise to you but some people actually like the work of artists that you do not. And then some of those people who like these artists whose work you sneer at will also purchase what they admire.
Don't forget before art investors which is the term you really should have used [who are quite different from art collectors who do like what they purchase], only invest in art that has become valuable because initially people liked it and then bought it and thus gave it value.

I think so too. I came across the following analysis in the Economist on this very issue, at http://www.economist.com/blogs/prospero/2012/06/art-market
Here's an extract.

"In a new report entitled “Profit or Pleasure? Exploring the Motivations Behind Treasure Trends”, only a tenth of those questioned said they bought art purely as an investment, whereas 75% cited enjoyment as the key. The study is based on interviews with 2,000 rich people in 17 countries."

If one is buying purely for investment purposes, one doesn't have to like at all the objects one is buying, whether they are coins, stamps, pictures or even houses. However, if what one likes is also considered to be a good or recommended investment, then one has the best of both worlds.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on February 14, 2013, 06:08:13 AM
Of course they cited enjoyment as the key. What that survey shows is that ten percent of the buyers were honest.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Ray on February 14, 2013, 08:57:52 AM
Of course they cited enjoyment as the key. What that survey shows is that ten percent of the buyers were honest.

What an interesting concept, Russ, that the wealthy, soulless individuals who buy great works of art without appreciation, liking or understanding of their inherent beauty, at least have the virtue of honesty.  ;D
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on February 14, 2013, 09:12:05 AM
Hey Ray, there's hardly a single piece of flat art -- current or ancient -- that can't be reproduced almost exactly with advanced giclee techniques. If the producers of those art works were willing to make giclee copies, everybody'd be able to have the visual equivalent of the original Mona Lisa hanging on their walls. It's all about marketing and it's all about investment and it's all about being able to show both your friends and the great unwashed that you have big bucks. Yes, those folks in the ten percent were honest. There may be some among the ninety percent who also appreciate the art for its own sake, but they'd be able to have the same art for a lot less money if it weren't for the "art market" structure.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: kencameron on February 14, 2013, 03:59:03 PM
....there's hardly a single piece of flat art -- current or ancient -- that can't be reproduced almost exactly with advanced giclee techniques...
Mmm. Giclee, as I understand it, is just a fancy word for inkjet. I would appreciate some documentation (I will also have a look myself). It would have to be a pretty advanced technique, to reproduce the kind of texture you get from the thick application of the paint in many oil paintings. It would also have to be pretty advanced to reproduce the reflectivity of other kinds of paint - eg acrylic. I guess you did say "flat" and "almost exactly", and you might add that the texture of the paint is only part of the story and that composition, iconography and narrative come across just fine. But your claim still seems a bit of a stretch to me, probably based on a lifetime's experience of being almost shocked by the difference when I do get to see the originals of works I have previously seen only in reproduction.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on February 14, 2013, 04:12:53 PM
Ken, At the moment I don't have time to dig deeper, but go to http://www.breathingcolor.com/page/giclee-canvas-art-giclee-canvas and check the first paragraph. This reference is pretty superficial, but if you want to dig deeper you'll find that there are giclee techniques that almost exactly reproduce brushstrokes, etc. Let's face it, nowadays with 3d printing we can produce practically anything.

A lot of photographers call their inkjet prints made with pigmented inks "giclee," but real giclee goes way beyond that.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Eric Myrvaagnes on February 14, 2013, 08:00:17 PM
"In a new report entitled “Profit or Pleasure? Exploring the Motivations Behind Treasure Trends”, only a tenth of those questioned said they bought art purely as an investment, whereas 75% cited enjoyment as the key. The study is based on interviews with 2,000 rich people in 17 countries."
Another interpretation could be that the 75% were honestly admitting that they get a great deal of enjoyment --- out of making profit!
(The quote doesn't specify what kind of enjoyment they were citing.)  ;)
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Ray on February 14, 2013, 08:03:19 PM
Ken, At the moment I don't have time to dig deeper, but go to http://www.breathingcolor.com/page/giclee-canvas-art-giclee-canvas and check the first paragraph. This reference is pretty superficial, but if you want to dig deeper you'll find that there are giclee techniques that almost exactly reproduce brushstrokes, etc. Let's face it, nowadays with 3d printing we can produce practically anything.

A lot of photographers call their inkjet prints made with pigmented inks "giclee," but real giclee goes way beyond that.

As I understand, Russ, in order to reproduce the physical 3-dimensionality of subtle layers of oil paint on a canvas, one would need to use the very elaborate processes of the new 3D printing techniques which seem to be mainly used, currently, to reproduce or make molds of 3-dimensional objects like sculptures, teapots, vases and dolls, or thermoplastic molds for manufacturing processes.

It's not clear to me whether the current 3D technology is up to the job of creating the very precise 3D mold of the surface of an oil or acrylic painting, and then transferring the precise shade of color onto each tiny and subtle brush stroke.

The following links show examples of the new 3D technology used for art reproductions. In the case of the reproduction of the Altarpiece of Guimerà, a huge 15th century master piece of a Catalan Gothic painting in Spain, which I assume because it's so huge has a relatively coarse texture, the 3D mold is created first, then a standard inkjet printer is used to print the colors onto a special type of flexible and elastic material called Papelgel which is subsequently applied or glued to the uneven surface of the mold, with great precision.

http://www.guimera.info/avui/Retaule/article.pdf

http://hyperallergic.com/44764/alfred-steiner-erased-schulnik-diptych/

But let's assume that such 3D printing technology will eventually develop, if it hasn't already, to the point where it's possible to reproduce the 3-dimensionality of the most subtle of brush strokes and apply the correct shade of color precisely to each individual brush stroke. Is this any different in concept to what has always been possible with the reproduction of photographic prints?

Even if a photographer claims to have destroyed the negative, or deleted the original RAW or Tiff file so that no more prints can be made, thus hoping to increase the value of the single, or the very few prints he has made, we all know how relatively easy it is to make a high-resolution scan of a flat print, if it's small enough, or in the case of Gursky's Rhine II, photograph the photograph with a high-resolution camera, employing stitching processes if necessary.

This is a point I made on the previous page, which I thought hadn't been addressed and which I repeat below.

"Another issue is the reproducibility of the Rhine II print. A photograph of a painting is still a photograph and the differences between the two can be easily discerned. But a photograph of a photograph can be visually indistinguishable from the original, without forensic testing."

Even if one can discern some subtle differences, using a magnifying glass, it may not be clear which is the original and which is the copy. When people own a valuable diamond they will often have a copy made which looks identical to the original to all but expert jewellers with magnifying glasses. The copy is worn by the lady of the house on special occasions, but the original is kept in the safe and no-one is the wiser.

However, forensic testing, and/or Carbon-14 dating in the case of old paintings, will usually reveal the original.

Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Ray on February 14, 2013, 08:17:20 PM
Another interpretation could be that the 75% were honestly admitting that they get a great deal of enjoyment --- out of making profit!
(The quote doesn't specify what kind of enjoyment they were citing.)  ;)

Not necessarily, Eric. In order to make a profit, one has to not only buy, but also later sell. If you read the artricle, you'll come across the following comments.

Quote
If buying is generally pleasurable, selling is mostly not.

Quote
“When I don't buy anything, the fair feels dull. Buying makes you feel connected to what is going on.”

Buying art doesn't just offer a sense of community, it engenders feelings of victory, cultural superiority and social distinction. Some say that it even fills a spiritual void. The term most commonly used by collectors, however, is that buying art gives them a “high”. 

Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Eric Myrvaagnes on February 14, 2013, 11:34:34 PM
Not necessarily, Eric. In order to make a profit, one has to not only buy, but also later sell. If you read the artricle, you'll come across the following comments.
 

Ray,

I'll readily admit that I haven't read the article, only the brief initial quote. But the additional quotes you cite still don't give any information about whether the pleasure in buying is in any way related to the esthetic value of the object bought, or simply in anticpation of selling for a profit.

Lots of people buy things thinking they are going to make a bundle when they sell, but then find themselves selling for much less than they expected. Consider the recent housing market mess, for example. I don't see why the same can't happen when buyers overestimate the potential selling price of art that they buy.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Slobodan Blagojevic on February 15, 2013, 12:34:10 AM
Why is it soooo difficult for some of you to accept that there are people who actually like the Rhein II (I do)?

You seem to go to great lengths looking for any other explanation, mostly cynical (investment) or derogatory (stupid rich). Some of you are patronizingly concerned with the longevity or reproducibility of the said piece. The people who pay 4+ millions for a photograph do not have net worth of 5 million, but more likely in the range of 50 to 500 million. If they bought it as an investment, then will sell it in a couple of years, so longevity does not matter to them. If they bought it for enjoyment, they do not care if it is going to fade after they are dead. We live in a throw-away era. We throw away our digital cameras after just a couple of years. Electronics is the new paper handkerchief. So is art produced by that electronics.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: SunnyUK on February 15, 2013, 06:58:15 AM
Why is it soooo difficult for some of you to accept that there are people who actually like the Rhein II (I do)?

Fair point. I know I'm amongst the cynics who want to lambast people for paying THAT much money for THAT picture. But you're right, it's really their money and their taste, and I'm definitely not the right person to judge them for that.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Ray on February 17, 2013, 08:11:26 AM
Here's my Volga II, if anyone's interested. I can print this 12ft wide or longer, and the price will be significantly less than $4.7 million.  ;D
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Eric Myrvaagnes on February 17, 2013, 09:54:12 AM
Maybe if you clone out the clouds and the islands in the river, you could get a better price for it.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on February 17, 2013, 01:52:51 PM
Eric's right, and you also need a completely blank, paved path in the foreground. That'll get the price up by at least 500 grand.

If Gursky's reading this stuff I'm sure he's laughing all the way over to the bank to check his balance.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Eric Myrvaagnes on February 17, 2013, 03:32:26 PM
Maybe I'll steal this image, make my adjustments as well as Russ's suggested improvements, and then claim it as my own with a price tag of $5.7 million!
Or will I have to go to $6.7 million to get a buyer?

Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Ray on February 17, 2013, 07:29:26 PM
Maybe if you clone out the clouds and the islands in the river, you could get a better price for it.


BuT I like the islands and the clouds, and I prefer the expanse of rippled water in the foreground to a concrete path.  ;D
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on February 17, 2013, 07:47:53 PM
TS my son. You just don't understand the "art market." It's got to be boring to sell at those prices.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Eric Myrvaagnes on February 17, 2013, 08:54:57 PM
TS my son. You just don't understand the "art market." It's got to be boring to sell at those prices.
+17.5.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Ray on February 17, 2013, 10:32:31 PM
+17.5.



Eric,
How did you work out that my Volga II, when the full image is printed to reveal the detail one sees in the small portion viewed at 100% on an HD monitor, will result in a print which is 17.5ft wide?  ;D
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Eric Myrvaagnes on February 18, 2013, 12:12:08 AM
Obviously I just viewed it full-screen on my 17.5' HD monitor.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Ray on February 18, 2013, 07:42:22 AM
Obviously I just viewed it full-screen on my 17.5' HD monitor.


But you viewed a downsized image of a random size. Isn't that a coincidence!  ;D

Good shot of the monitor lizard, but I would prefer to see the whole of the two lizards.  :)
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Eric Myrvaagnes on February 18, 2013, 09:15:29 AM
But you viewed a downsized image of a random size. Isn't that a coincidence!  ;D

Good shot of the monitor lizard, but I would prefer to see the whole of the two lizards.  :)
But the second one wasn't HD.  ::)
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Ray on February 18, 2013, 10:07:17 PM
But the second one wasn't HD.  ::)

Eric, you are a silly old chap! Sometime you make no sense at all.  ;D
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on February 19, 2013, 11:57:10 AM
Here it is, Palatlakaha II. I'll have to expect a slightly lower initial estimate for its auction price than for Rhein II since it isn't quite as boring. I couldn't get a straight, boring path on the near side, so the algae along the bank will have to substitute.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: amolitor on February 19, 2013, 03:44:48 PM
It's interesting that a bunch of photographers, who are as a group pretty much notorious for deriving pleasure from buying expensive stuff they don't need and that probably isn't in any meaningful way "worth it", bitching about rich art buyers..
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Slobodan Blagojevic on February 19, 2013, 03:52:14 PM
It's interesting that a bunch of photographers, who are as a group pretty much notorious for deriving pleasure from buying expensive stuff they don't need and that probably isn't in any meaningful way "worth it", bitching about rich art buyers..

+1  ;D
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on February 19, 2013, 03:59:11 PM
Any more spoilsports out there?
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: amolitor on February 19, 2013, 04:01:48 PM
WE ARE LEGION

(I don't like Rhine II either, for the record, but it's not my money)
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Ray on February 19, 2013, 07:54:03 PM
Here it is, Palatlakaha II. I'll have to expect a slightly lower initial estimate for its auction price than for Rhein II since it isn't quite as boring. I couldn't get a straight, boring path on the near side, so the algae along the bank will have to substitute.

Russ,
C'mon now! Just look at the comparison below. Gursky's Rhein II expresses the simplicity of mathematical harmony imposed upon nature through the creative processes of the photographer.

Observe that the two strips of greenery in the foreground, separated by the path, are of equal size and shape.

Observe that the narrow concrete path is equal in size and shape to the strip of greenery on the far side of the river bank.

Observe that the sky is exactly twice the height of the expanse of water, and twice the area.

The photograph thus expresses, or brings to mind, or hints at the rather amazing concept that nature, in all her complexity, may conform to mathematical rules.

Now, what is the concept behind your photo, Russ? Did you accidentally trip the shutter as you were walking along the river bank whilst holding the camera steady with one hand to stop it swaying against your body as it dangled from your neck?  ;D
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on February 19, 2013, 09:06:17 PM
If my camera ever dangled from my neck I'd be dead.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Ray on February 19, 2013, 09:36:29 PM
If my camera ever dangled from my neck I'd be dead.

Wow! Is your camera that heavy, Russ. I've sometimes hiked all day long with two DSLRs dangling from my neck. When the terrain is rough, I have to steady them with both hands to stop them clashing into each other.  ;)

Of course, to be clear unless some people get confused, my cameras are dangling from the back of my neck, and sometimes the side of my neck, using what is known as a shoulder strap. I never use the shoulder strap to dangle the camera from my shoulder because there's a risk it might slip off. I therfore always sling the camera's shoulder-strap around my neck.

As long as the strap is anchored around the back of the neck or the side of the neck where one's shirt collar is usually situated, it's not too uncomfortable. However, if the strap were anchored around the front of the neck, it would restrict one's breathing and also reduce the speed with which one could grab the camera to take a shot.

Hope I've clarified that situation for you.  ;D
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Eric Myrvaagnes on February 20, 2013, 12:07:08 AM
I just had another brilliant idea. You know how some artists (and even photographers) may use the same title over and over again for different images ("Untitled," for example). Well my idea is that maybe I should title my next 500 photos each "Rhein II" and see if that helps to inflate the price.  8)
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on February 20, 2013, 09:23:38 AM
Hope I've clarified that situation for you.  ;D

Thanks Ray, that was a pretty thorough clarification. Actually, my D3 with 24-70 f/2.8, which is my all-time favorite combination weighs just about 5 pounds. If I put on the 70-200 f/2.8 the rig goes up to 6 pounds. Now you have to understand that I have an 83-year-old neck, so I've done a couple things to keep the weight off of it. First, I hang the camera with a shoulder strap on -- believe it or not --- my shoulder. Actually, my strap is an Upstrap, which lets me slant my shoulder very close to vertical without the camera falling off. The second thing I've done is to get rid of the 70-200 f/2.8 and substitute the new 70-200 f/4, which is just a tad lighter than the 24-70 but with the same characteristics as the 70-200 f/2.8. Considering the kind of ISO I get with the D3 and D800 it's a fair trade. If I really need less depth of field I put on an 85mm f/1.8 prime.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: jjj on February 20, 2013, 09:55:55 AM
Of course they cited enjoyment as the key. What that survey shows is that ten percent of the buyers were honest.
And what your statement shows is that you will twist and manipulate any evidence to prove your world view/opinion is correct or simply ignore anything that you cannot mangle to your view.
There are other viewpoints you know. For example...

Why is it soooo difficult for some of you to accept that there are people who actually like the Rhein II (I do)?

You seem to go to great lengths looking for any other explanation, mostly cynical (investment) or derogatory (stupid rich). Some of you are patronizingly concerned with the longevity or reproducibility of the said piece. The people who pay 4+ millions for a photograph do not have net worth of 5 million, but more likely in the range of 50 to 500 million.
I also like Gursky's work and if I could afford a house big enough to display such work properly, then maybe I could afford his prices too.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rob C on February 20, 2013, 02:12:20 PM
Neck straps are more interesting.

Actually, wearing one so that it passes behind the neck with the camera hanging down the front of you is not any safer or more comfortable.

Once you have your first heart attack you discover more interesting things about your neck as, for examle, the two arteries that run down both the sides, right where the strap likes to press itself. A little too much time so strapped up, and you can feel yourself faint quite away: almost as in a ladies' magazine article, but without the thrill.

Best to keep cameras in a case, the case left at home or in the studio. Or, in extremis, have it carried by/in the tender care of someone much younger and ignorant of the dangers that lurk therein.

As for the value of pictures - depends how much money and/or sense one has. Oh, taste: forgot about that. Let's just look at paintings, then.

Rob C
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: amolitor on February 20, 2013, 02:46:19 PM
I think sometimes I am the only person in the world to go strapless. I carry the camera in my hand (well, cameras that are small enough to do so, I have a couple of tripod mounted things that mostly gather dust). This would be difficult, I guess, with a big (D)SLR but for the little Nikons I have it works perfectly well.

My leaving my neck clear, I expect to live forever!
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Slobodan Blagojevic on February 20, 2013, 02:55:32 PM
It seems that this thread has finally found its true calling, best expressed in two words: neck and hanging?
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: WalterEG on February 20, 2013, 03:00:04 PM
Neckstrap-free-zone here.  Apart from anything else, there are no strap lugs that I can find on a Sinar.

Adding the tangle of a strap on my Fuji X-E 1 would defeat the purose of a grab-cam.

Cheers,

W
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Eric Myrvaagnes on February 20, 2013, 09:19:57 PM
It seems that this thread has finally found its true calling, best expressed in two words: neck and hanging?
Now if I ever saw Rhein II hanging from somebody's neck, I really would be impressed.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: amolitor on February 21, 2013, 09:12:38 AM
The Rhine of the Ancient Mariner..
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on February 21, 2013, 09:14:31 AM
Now if I ever saw Rhein II hanging from somebody's neck, I really would be impressed.


Better on a T-shirt.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rob C on February 21, 2013, 12:42:24 PM
The Rhine of the Ancient Mariner..




Back to Fleetwood Mac and his big bad bird.

Rob C
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Ray on February 21, 2013, 07:26:40 PM
Now you have to understand that I have an 83-year-old neck, so I've done a couple things to keep the weight off of it.

Hi Russ,
I didn't realise you were that old. At 70, I'm just a youngster compared with you.  ;D

Replacing the 70-200/F2.8 with the lighter 70-200/F4 is a move in the right direction, but that D3 is a heavy beast. I recall holding just the camera body in my hand at a photographic exhibition a few years ago, shortly after the camera was first released, and felt immediately that it was noticeably heavier than any of my other cameras. The weight alone put me off, regardless of the price.

I think you should consider replacing that burdensome D3 with Nikon's newest upcoming camera, the 24mp D7100. This camera with zoom lens attached might weigh no more than the D3 body, and the technical performance at base ISO will probably exceed that of the D3 in every department, DR, SNR, Tonal Range, resolution etc.

Regards
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rob C on February 22, 2013, 04:39:19 AM
Surely, Ray, you don't subscribe to the notion that it's the camera that makes the difference? Or the neck?

Rob C
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Ray on February 22, 2013, 08:46:46 AM
Surely, Ray, you don't subscribe to the notion that it's the camera that makes the difference? Or the neck?

Rob C

What difference are you referring to, Rob?
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on February 22, 2013, 03:01:27 PM
Thanks Ray. Good advice I'm sure. I did switch to a D800 for a lot of my work, but I still love my D3 for certain things. Early next month I'll shoot the dress rehearsal for a play. I shot a rehearsal with the D800 in December since my D3 was at Nikon for repair, and the weight of several hundred 36.3 megapixel files was pretty intimidating. The D3 returned nicely CLAed but with its autofocus problem unfixed and I had to send it back. I'm hoping it'll show up again before the next shoot. I do love the D800. ISO range is about the same as with the D3, but dynamic range and color accuracy are noticeably better. Of course, resolution is improved too. On the other hand though I have pretty powerful computers it takes a long time to plow through that many pixels.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rob C on February 22, 2013, 03:15:35 PM
What difference are you referring to, Rob?



Of the resulting pictures?

Rob C
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Ray on February 22, 2013, 10:20:36 PM
I did switch to a D800 for a lot of my work, but I still love my D3 for certain things. Early next month I'll shoot the dress rehearsal for a play. I shot a rehearsal with the D800 in December since my D3 was at Nikon for repair, and the weight of several hundred 36.3 megapixel files was pretty intimidating.

Hi Russ,
I also use a D800E. I thought it might be the last camera I'd buy because it has the same pixel density as my other cropped-format Nikon, the D7000, and therefore serves the same purpose as that camera, in addition to its wider angle of view that the full-frame sensor provides. In effect, it seemed like I was getting two cameras for the price of one.

However, on my last photographic trip, carrying just my D800E and a couple of zoom lenses, I found it very frustrating having to continually change lenses, especially when I was clambering over and trying to balance on fallen stone slabs in temple ruins in the Cambodian jungle.

For this reason, I'm going back to carrying two cameras with lenses attached, despite the extra weight. I guess I'll just have to take up weight-lifting to keep up my strength.  ;D

Whilst the old D7000 has no image-quality advantage if one is using the D800, the new D7100 does have the advantage of higher resolution and therefore provides effectively a longer reach with the same lens.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Ray on February 22, 2013, 10:27:33 PM


Of the resulting pictures?

Rob C

Hi Rob,
Cameras can make a big difference to the resulting picture. Didn't you know that?  ;D

For example, if you don't have a camera, you can't take a photograph at all, so no resulting picture, zilch, nada, unless you take up painting of course.

If you do have a camera, but it's a Brownie Box camera, or an iPhone camera, you might still be able to take worthwhile pictures which may be more interesting, and considered by some to be more artistic, than certain other images taken by other photographers using multi-thousand dollar MFDBs. When it comes to artistic matters, everything is a matter of opinion.

However, I doubt that Gursky's Rhein II, at its humongous size of 8ft x 12ft, would have sold for $4.7 million if it had been taken with the average iPhone. However, the 40mp, Nokia PureView 808 could probably have done the job, thus demonstrating that there is a difference between a very small 5mp sensor and a significantly larger 40mp sensor.  ;D
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rob C on February 23, 2013, 10:13:35 AM
Hi Rob,
Cameras can make a big difference to the resulting picture. Didn't you know that?  ;D

For example, if you don't have a camera, you can't take a photograph at all, so no resulting picture, zilch, nada, unless you take up painting of course.






Dear me, Ray that’s so reactionary!

You are missing the entire point of photography, which is fundamentally nothing more than vehicle to a sublime emotional experience. Or, you may just be signalling the early stages of photographic competence, and so I shan’t offer any seriously critical comment here, other than to let you know that the best, for you, is yet to come.

Snapping’s like fishing (obviously) and you will one day discover that the very best snaps are the ones that you simply didn’t make for the fundamental reason that you were so wrapped in the moment (even, sometimes, decisively so) that the distraction of finger on button would have absolutely removed the thin, evanescent patina of magic, that quasi-erotic sense of oneness with the creation before your eyes, that not making the shot actually allowed you to preserve within the eternity of your inner consciousness.

Similar to fishing, as I said, but with the advantage that you never, ever have to stand there, legs apart and arms stretched out in undignified boastful measure.

Less is sometimes more, but nothing is perfection. As I’m sure you now agree.

Don‘t become disheartened, though, there’s time enough yet.

So, Ray, I find myself having to suggest that your thoughful contention about the relative values of having or not having a camera to hand at any one moment of possible photographic moment doesn’t, in fact, hold at all: the better experiences, those rare (very) happenings that transcend the mundane are all best experienced without mecha-electro distractions in hand. Just like the fish, as I said when I came in.

Someone remarked somewhere else about the strange habits of some LuLa members; you know, like not sticking to finely defined lines of demarcation (lines of demarcation are usually finely defined) such as lenses only to be mentioned within the context of a lens thread, cameras only in camera threads, and so forth. I can’t say that I have ever found this rule to have been violated within the illuminated (and illuminating) pages of this fine journal, have you? As for allegations of personal attack! Goodness me, perish the thought that such ungentlemanly behaviour would be tollerated by the establishment, the writing hierarchy of this club for seniors!

Bless you, my son; the planets will soon align, Kodachrome will return.

Rob C

Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Slobodan Blagojevic on February 23, 2013, 10:45:05 AM
That's why I am on LuLa!
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Ray on February 23, 2013, 07:40:57 PM

You are missing the entire point of photography, which is fundamentally nothing more than vehicle to a sublime emotional experience.


Vehicles can make a difference, Rob, especially when trying to capture the sublime emotional experience of crossing the Great Sandy Desert in Western Australia.

Without the right type of vehicle you woulkd likely get stuck. In an area without mobile phone coverage, you might die.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: BernardLanguillier on February 23, 2013, 09:36:36 PM
Snapping’s like fishing (obviously) and you will one day discover that the very best snaps are the ones that you simply didn’t make for the fundamental reason that you were so wrapped in the moment (even, sometimes, decisively so) that the distraction of finger on button would have absolutely removed the thin, evanescent patina of magic, that quasi-erotic sense of oneness with the creation before your eyes, that not making the shot actually allowed you to preserve within the eternity of your inner consciousness.

Rob,

This is your best post ever.

The most amazing thing is that we don't really need a camera not to take the shot. It ends up being a call for simply seeing. The implications of your fishing analogy are so profound that I'll spend my whole NRT-BKK flight playing with it without touching a camera!

Cheers,
Bernard
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rob C on February 24, 2013, 10:47:12 AM
Rob,

This is your best post ever.

The most amazing thing is that we don't really need a camera not to take the shot. It ends up being a call for simply seeing. The implications of your fishing analogy are so profound that I'll spend my whole NRT-BKK flight playing with it without touching a camera!

Cheers,
Bernard




Good Lord! Thanks for that, but I do hope you take time to listen to the stewardesses' safety announcements! (And that no lady is playing make-believe in the toilets.)

;-)

Rob C
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rob C on February 24, 2013, 10:56:55 AM
Vehicles can make a difference, Rob, especially when trying to capture the sublime emotional experience of crossing the Great Sandy Desert in Western Australia.

Without the right type of vehicle you woulkd likely get stuck. In an area without mobile phone coverage, you might die.


Ray, I have long been resigned to the inevitability of the event; it powers one of the few remaining reasons for making an exposure photograph: eternity, or a stab at it. Or, maybe two hundred years if stored properly (the print, not myself).

As far as deserts go, not a chance: I won't even go to the beach these days. Not because I fear a sunstroked street shooter, but because I'd get sand in the car and then the apartment. Which I'd have to clean.

Rob C


Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Isaac on July 12, 2013, 05:17:17 PM
Quote
"This effect (most obvious in works like 99 Cent and Rhein II, 1999) is achieved by photographing a scene of deep space, scanning the image into a computer and dividing it into horizontal bands, adjusting objects near the vanishing point so that their resolution matches that of objects in the foreground, and then pasting the whole thing back into its original configuration. The results are twofold: First, atmospheric perspective is eliminated; second, things that originally lay one behind the other now lie next to each other on the same spatial plane."

Margaret Sundell, "Review: Andreas Gursky, Matthew Marks", Artforum 38 (7), March 2000, p131
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rob C on July 13, 2013, 05:00:57 AM
Now we understand art.

Love those writers!

Rob C
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Isaac on July 13, 2013, 12:14:19 PM
Now you have a clue.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: kencameron on July 22, 2013, 11:18:09 AM
Snapping’s like fishing (obviously) and you will one day discover that the very best snaps are the ones that you simply didn’t make for the fundamental reason that you were so wrapped in the moment (even, sometimes, decisively so) that the distraction of finger on button would have absolutely removed the thin, evanescent patina of magic, that quasi-erotic sense of oneness with the creation before your eyes, that not making the shot actually allowed you to preserve within the eternity of your inner consciousness.

Well - yes. But it helps to have to have a camera, or the habit of a camera, so you are open to the possibility of those very best snaps. Drawing serves the same purpose, as John Ruskin pointed out. He thought everyone should be encouraged to learn drawing, not because they would produce good drawings (very few would do that) but because they would learn to look and see. I think the same is true of  photography - the attention it develops is, for many of us, more valuable than the photographs.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: 32BT on July 22, 2013, 11:51:18 AM
Well - yes. But it helps to have to have a camera, or the habit of a camera, so you are open to the possibility of those very best snaps. Drawing serves the same purpose, as John Ruskin pointed out. He thought everyone should be encouraged to learn drawing, not because they would produce good drawings (very few would do that) but because they would learn to look and see. I think the same is true of  photography - the attention it develops is, for many of us, more valuable than the photographs.

But don't you think there is a fundamental difference between drawing which requires calming down and concentration, vs happy snapping which merely detaches you from reality? I agree that photography can potentially develop attention, but in its current state it reminds me of all those people that actually missed the experience of vital events because they were too busy trying to capture it on video.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Eric Myrvaagnes on July 22, 2013, 12:03:52 PM
Well - yes. But it helps to have to have a camera, or the habit of a camera, so you are open to the possibility of those very best snaps. Drawing serves the same purpose, as John Ruskin pointed out. He thought everyone should be encouraged to learn drawing, not because they would produce good drawings (very few would do that) but because they would learn to look and see. I think the same is true of  photography - the attention it develops is, for many of us, more valuable than the photographs.
Well put, Ken. When I had an 8x10 view camera, I often set it up just to look at scenes, without bothering with film.
Recently I went out photographing with my DSLR, and with the first shot I realized that I had no memory card in the camera (blush, blush). I kept on shooting, and looking, anyway. I'm sure it helps.

Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: kencameron on July 22, 2013, 12:12:37 PM
But don't you think there is a fundamental difference between drawing which requires calming down and concentration, vs happy snapping which merely detaches you from reality?
I find that going out with a camera helps me to pay attention in a way that carries over into occasions when I don't have the camera. I would admit, though, that digital photography too often lures me into taking far too many photographs. But that is another story.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on July 22, 2013, 12:21:58 PM
I never go anywhere without a camera, but in my own experience I've found that in order to make good use of the camera I have to shift away from "wandering around with a camera over my shoulder" mode into "looking for pictures" mode. If I'm carrying my D3 or D800 I'm always in "looking for pictures" mode because I wouldn't go out with a camera that heavy and bulky if I weren't out there for pictures. But in "wandering around with a camera over my shoulder" mode the E-P1 is, literally, over my shoulder, not ready for the kind of reflex snapping needed for the street. But when I wrap the strap around my wrist and get the camera into my hand, then I'll get pictures.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Isaac on July 22, 2013, 01:17:19 PM
Unshackle your burdens! Cut a 2x3 window in some foam core and carry that instead of a camera.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Slobodan Blagojevic on July 22, 2013, 01:25:36 PM
... it reminds me of all those people that actually missed the experience of vital events because they were too busy trying to capture it..

Funny you mentioned that. I posted this, in response to Rob's similar thoughts on the subject, about a year ago:

"Reminds me of a discussion I had with a mountaineering friend. He was telling me about the joy of being there, high up, alone, witnessing a magnificent vista, etc., and I responded by lamenting the fact that he does not carry a camera. He seemed genuinely bewildered by my suggestion. His explanation was that it is precisely the lack of recording (and inherent subsequent sharing of it) that makes the moment unique and transient, intimate and personal. Capturing it sounded to him like imprisoning it, sharing it like prostituting it. Something like a masstardization™ of beauty (my newly coined word: mass bastardization :))"
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on July 22, 2013, 01:54:15 PM
Unshackle your burdens! Cut a 2x3 window in some foam core and carry that instead of a camera.

Is that what you do, Isaac?
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: 32BT on July 22, 2013, 02:51:41 PM
Funny you mentioned that. I posted this, in response to Rob's similar thoughts on the subject, about a year ago:

"Reminds me of a discussion I had with a mountaineering friend. ...

I must agree with him. I happen to like how my memory completely distorts the reality of past events. Never understood the whole 60s thingy with drugs and all. My brain f**ks with my perception of reality quite enough on its own.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Isaac on July 22, 2013, 03:46:21 PM
Is that what you do, Isaac?

My modest SLT-A35 - with battery, modest fixed-length 35mm or 85mm, and lens hood - only weighs 24oz. I carry that camera in-hand for 5 or 6 hours without tiredness.

Even with camera in-hand, I seem to have less difficulty with "the joy of being there" versus "looking for pictures" than a couple of years ago. I seem able to choose being there, without regret.

Intermittently I will see something and engage in an episode of Taking the Photograph, but that feels less like an interruption and more like an addition. It's just that I'm starting to handle that camera, and those lenses, and that mini-tripod and tape and remote, and... more fluently ;-)
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on July 22, 2013, 04:03:16 PM
Sounds good. Lets see some of the stuff you shoot.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Isaac on July 22, 2013, 04:52:08 PM
If I was going to post photos, I would have done so by now.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on July 22, 2013, 04:56:04 PM
The why are you on here?
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: kencameron on July 22, 2013, 06:59:36 PM
Judging on performance, Isaac seems to me to be here to add a bit of intellectual rigor and a lot of interesting art-historical and theoretical context to our discussions. Of course, this isn't always gratifying to the rest of us and I have sometimes thought he might let go of subjects a bit sooner. But seeing his photographs would make no difference at all to my assessment of the quality of his thoughts.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Isaac on July 22, 2013, 07:03:06 PM
The why are you on here?
To do my choice of those things that others choose to do here.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on July 22, 2013, 09:08:31 PM
No kidding! And what are those?
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Isaac on July 23, 2013, 02:25:25 AM
Just in this discussion others have chosen to post: hectoring questions, supportive comments, comedic asides, personal anecdotes, ...

As you say -- As Casey said, "You could look it up."
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on July 23, 2013, 10:41:31 AM
Well, I agree that's a lot of fun and I enjoy it too, but this forum is supposed to be about photographs.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Isaac on July 23, 2013, 12:39:41 PM
This forum is supposed to be about -- "opinions on photography as an art form".

Do your descriptions of cameras and lenses and shoulder straps express an opinion on photography as an art form?
Do they say anything about Gursky's photography?

Physician, heal thyself;

In retrospect, only Ray seems to have had an informed opinion about Rhein II.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rhossydd on July 23, 2013, 12:51:14 PM
In retrospect, only Ray seems to have had an informed opinion about Rhein II.
No.

Have you ever actually seen the work yourself ? or any original Gursky prints ?
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Isaac on July 23, 2013, 12:56:31 PM
No, I haven't seen Rhein II.

Ray deserves more than your one word dismissal ;-)
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rhossydd on July 23, 2013, 01:21:20 PM
No, I haven't seen Rhein II.
Maybe instead of making one line comments and quoting others, you should make the effort to see the work yourself so you could offer your own informed opinion.
Quote
Ray deserves more than your one word dismissal ;-)
The one word dismissal was aimed at you because other comments here have expressed informed opinion.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Isaac on July 23, 2013, 01:31:24 PM
to see the work yourself

Seems that the Tate owns one, and MOMA owns one -- where are the other 4?

The one word dismissal was aimed at you because other comments here have expressed informed opinion.

I'd already dismissed my opinion about Rhein II when I put only Ray in bold :-)

Please do link to those other "informed" opinions.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rhossydd on July 23, 2013, 02:00:34 PM
Seems that the Tate owns one, and MOMA owns one -- where are the other 4?
So you haven't actually seen a Gursky original print at all then ?
Quote
Please do link to those other "informed" opinions.
At least my comment #45 is based on having seen the work (and other Gursky originals)
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Isaac on July 23, 2013, 02:23:06 PM
So you haven't actually seen a Gursky original print at all then ?

Asked and answered (http://www.luminous-landscape.com/forum/index.php?topic=59361.msg650024#msg650024).


At least my comment...

comment #45 (http://www.luminous-landscape.com/forum/index.php?topic=59361.msg565804#msg565804)

You got that it was big :-)
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rhossydd on July 23, 2013, 02:28:36 PM
Asked and answered (http://www.luminous-landscape.com/forum/index.php?topic=59361.msg650024#msg650024).
Actually you haven't answered, because I asked if you'd seen any Gursky original, not just RheinII, but I assume your answer will still be no.

You need to see an original to get any sort of understanding of his work.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Isaac on July 23, 2013, 02:34:14 PM
Actually you haven't answered, because I asked if you'd seen any Gursky original, not just RheinII, but I assume your answer will still be no.

I asked where are the other 4 prints of Rhein II, so people could follow your injunction to see the work themselves.

From there you jumped to the conclusion that I haven't seen any Gursky original -- your reasoning is broken, and as a matter of fact wrong.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rhossydd on July 23, 2013, 02:49:35 PM
I asked where are the other 4 prints of Rhein II,
I don't know.
Quote
From there you jumped to the conclusion that I haven't seen any Gursky original -- your reasoning is broken, and as a matter of fact wrong.
When you fail to answer......

So which Gursky originals have you seen and what did you think of them ? Did you see them before you knew of their valuations ? if so did seeing the originals change your view of their worth ?
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on July 23, 2013, 04:06:14 PM
I asked where are the other 4 prints of Rhein II, so people could follow your injunction to see the work themselves.

From there you jumped to the conclusion that I haven't seen any Gursky original -- your reasoning is broken, and as a matter of fact wrong.

So this is what you mean by " hectoring questions, supportive comments, comedic asides, personal anecdotes." I'd say the activities pretty much end after the first one.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Eric Myrvaagnes on July 23, 2013, 04:27:29 PM
So this is what you mean by " hectoring questions, supportive comments, comedic asides, personal anecdotes." I'd say the activities pretty much end after the first one.
+1.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Slobodan Blagojevic on July 23, 2013, 04:39:32 PM
A wise man recently said:

... I have sometimes thought he might let go of subjects a bit sooner...

 ;)
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Isaac on July 23, 2013, 05:26:19 PM
So this is what you mean by " hectoring questions, supportive comments, comedic asides, personal anecdotes." I'd say the activities pretty much end after the first one.

Nothing there that expresses an opinion on photography as an art form.
Nothing there that says anything about Gursky's photography.

Physician, heal thyself
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on July 23, 2013, 05:35:05 PM
Thanks, Isaac. You confirmed what I said.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Isaac on July 23, 2013, 05:46:52 PM
Thanks, Isaac. You confirmed what I said.

Russ, what you said cannot be true -- my words, which you quote, contain no questions.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: AFairley on July 23, 2013, 05:54:31 PM
This thread reminds me of when tried to pull a stick out of a girlfriend's dog's mouth.  I pulled and he clamped down and resisted.  I'd pull harder, he'd clamp down and pull back harder, I'd lighten up, he'd relax. So we're standing there each pulling on the stick, and I looked into his eyes and there was absolutely no one at home.

Back to topic, although IMO anyone who pays $4 million for a contemporary photograph has more money than sense, I expect the Gurskys are very impressive seen in person.  I understand that Eli Broad is quite a Gursky collector, so I am hoping there will a few on display at the Broad Museum when it opens next year.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Isaac on July 23, 2013, 06:19:53 PM
When you fail to answer...

When I fail to answer, you are not compelled to make up answers.

So which Gursky originals have you seen and what did you think of them ? Did you see them before you knew of their valuations ? if so did seeing the originals change your view of their worth ?

Hong Kong Stock Exchange, don't remember, don't remember, don't remember (but my usual view is that a thing is worth what someone will pay).

You didn't offer your answers to those questions -- and that's OK.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rhossydd on July 23, 2013, 06:37:05 PM
you are not compelled to make up answers.
Not compelled, no, but no answer is often answer enough.
Quote
You didn't offer your answers to those questions -- and that's OK.
Why would I answer questions no one asked ?
Quote
Don't remember
You saw a photo six feet high and over fourteen feet wide by one the world's most famous photographers and you can't remember what you thought of it.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Isaac on July 23, 2013, 06:58:27 PM
Not compelled, no, but no answer is often answer enough.

Your mistaken assumptions are just that -- yours.

Why would I answer questions no one asked ?

You asked them. I thought they might be questions that genuinely interested you.

You saw a photo six feet high and over fourteen feet wide by one the world's most famous photographers and you can't remember what you thought of it.

You already covered the obvious answer to what everyone thinks when they see a photo six feet high and over fourteen feet wide :-)

I guess you aren't going to say anything about globalization.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: AFairley on July 23, 2013, 07:38:34 PM
Still nobody home.....
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Isaac on July 23, 2013, 07:56:35 PM
No Back to topic fig leaf ?

Credit where it's due, only Ray seems to have had an informed opinion about Rhein II.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on July 23, 2013, 09:00:59 PM
Still nobody home.....

Exactly.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: fredjeang2 on July 24, 2013, 04:29:17 AM
This thread reminds me a little bit
The usual comments on Picasso:
"It's kid's paintings, anybody can do it"
...
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rob C on July 24, 2013, 05:18:24 AM
This thread reminds me of when tried to pull a stick out of a girlfriend's dog's mouth.  I pulled and he clamped down and resisted.  I'd pull harder, he'd clamp down and pull back harder, I'd lighten up, he'd relax. So we're standing there each pulling on the stick, and I looked into his eyes and there was absolutely no one at home.Back to topic, although IMO anyone who pays $4 million for a contemporary photograph has more money than sense, I expect the Gurskys are very impressive seen in person.  I understand that Eli Broad is quite a Gursky collector, so I am hoping there will a few on display at the Broad Museum when it opens next year.


We used to have a dog - an alsabrador - and about twenty-five or so cats all at the same time.

I used to play with the pooch on the beach; she'd pick up amazingly large branches and run with them, head up high.

I'd catch one end, start to swing, and within seconds she's be hanging on in space, going round and round as I spun. I can tell you: those eyes were never empty. You could read them, never more so than on the stormy morning that she died, across my knees on the cold kitchen floor after the vet gave her her last jab. Moments before she'd been standing stock still, head hanging, as my wife tried to speak to her as the vet got ready. She offered my wife her paw... None of us had empty eyes.

The cats? They were like their bigger cousins: inscrutable. Even with a pigeon under one paw.

Rob C
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: ripgriffith on July 24, 2013, 01:06:56 PM
g.

Such 'art' was never intended for mere mortals; maybe we should just smile and forget it; better still, provide it!

Rob C
+1 (emphasis mine)
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Dave (Isle of Skye) on July 24, 2013, 05:31:47 PM
This thread reminds me of when tried to pull a stick out of a girlfriend's dog's mouth.  I pulled and he clamped down and resisted.  I'd pull harder, he'd clamp down and pull back harder, I'd lighten up, he'd relax. So we're standing there each pulling on the stick, and I looked into his eyes and there was absolutely no one at home.

Yet I'll wager the dog still had the stick in the end - so there must be some kind of moral in there somewhere I think  ;D


We used to have a dog - an alsabrador - and about twenty-five or so cats all at the same time.

I used to play with the pooch on the beach; she'd pick up amazingly large branches and run with them, head up high.

I'd catch one end, start to swing, and within seconds she's be hanging on in space, going round and round as I spun. I can tell you: those eyes were never empty. You could read them, never more so than on the stormy morning that she died, across my knees on the cold kitchen floor after the vet gave her her last jab. Moments before she'd been standing stock still, head hanging, as my wife tried to speak to her as the vet got ready. She offered my wife her paw... None of us had empty eyes.

The cats? They were like their bigger cousins: inscrutable. Even with a pigeon under one paw.

Rob C

Rob, been there, done that and cried like a baby for weeks after, we would love another mutt, but it is just too heart rending at the end  :'(

Dave
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Eric Myrvaagnes on July 24, 2013, 08:05:38 PM
Perhaps LuLa needs a new Forum area, perhaps called "Dogs and Sticks." Then this thread, and a few others, might appropriately be moved there.   ;D  ::)
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Isaac on July 24, 2013, 08:38:59 PM
Perhaps called Sticks & Stones.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Slobodan Blagojevic on July 24, 2013, 08:47:33 PM
Or Old Dogs, No New Tricks?
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: WalterEG on July 24, 2013, 08:51:49 PM
Or Old Dogs, No New Tricks?

What a gem!!  I love it!

W
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Eric Myrvaagnes on July 24, 2013, 11:42:18 PM
What a gem!!  I love it!

W
+1.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rob C on July 26, 2013, 03:34:56 AM
Yet I'll wager the dog still had the stick in the end - so there must be some kind of moral in there somewhere I think  ;D

Rob, been there, done that and cried like a baby for weeks after, we would love another mutt, but it is just too heart rending at the end  :'(Dave


We had two over the years, and your reason for final non-replacement mirrored ours. I'd love another large one now, but with my wife gone, myself with health issues and little youth left, it wouldn't be fair to the animal when I go.

The experience of returning to an empty property, no welcoming barks, was devasting. As is the sense of uncertainty now, without the early-warning system that a light-sleeping guard provides... having a ground-floor apartment, every time I dump myself down on the typist chair at the computer I find myself having to lock the terrace doors. You just never know who's going to wander around looking like a gardener, a plumber or a meter reader and be none of those. Or even just loose kids. They are quite often feral.

Rob C
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: mezzoduomo on July 26, 2013, 09:48:59 AM

We had two over the years, and your reason for final non-replacement mirrored ours. I'd love another large one now, but with my wife gone, myself with health issues and little youth left, it wouldn't be fair to the animal when I go.

The experience of returning to an empty property, no welcoming barks, was devasting. As is the sense of uncertainty now, without the early-warning system that a light-sleeping guard provides... having a ground-floor apartment, every time I dump myself down on the typist chair at the computer I find myself having to lock the terrace doors. You just never know who's going to wander around looking like a gardener, a plumber or a meter reader and be none of those. Or even just loose kids. They are quite often feral.

Rob C

Rob, I think you should get yourself a dog...maybe a smaller one this time.
You could lay some plans for the dog's future should something happen to you.  The dog will adjust very well to new circumstances, at least that's been my experience.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: Rob C on July 26, 2013, 11:02:32 AM
Rob, I think you should get yourself a dog...maybe a smaller one this time.
You could lay some plans for the dog's future should something happen to you.  The dog will adjust very well to new circumstances, at least that's been my experience.



How do I replace this tower of strength, teeth and fierce family love?

;-)

Rob C
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: RSL on July 26, 2013, 11:16:22 AM
You can't, Rob. We went through the same thing. Had a beautiful, motherly Dobe, and what a friend named one day when I was walking the dogs: "Oh, you have one of those." We finally had to put down the "one of those" when her hip aplasia became so painful that she couldn't walk. Then, one evening the Dobe unexpectedly put her nose on my lap and said, "I love you," went to my wife and said the same thing, went outside through her doggie door and, as soon as she got outside, had a heart attack or a stroke. You can't replace dogs like those, though you might be able to find a new love.
Title: Re: Andreas Gursky's Rhein II
Post by: mezzoduomo on July 26, 2013, 12:08:50 PM
You can't, Rob. We went through the same thing. Had a beautiful, motherly Dobe, and what a friend named one day when I was walking the dogs: "Oh, you have one of those." We finally had to put down the "one of those" when her hip aplasia became so painful that she couldn't walk. Then, one evening the Dobe unexpectedly put her nose on my lap and said, "I love you," went to my wife and said the same thing, went outside through her doggie door and, as soon as she got outside, had a heart attack or a stroke. You can't replace dogs like those, though you might be able to find a new love.

+1!