“the grammar of photography”


General Photography

“Thomas Ruff is explaining the enduring concerns that have animated the work that has made him one of the most innovative and distinguished art photographers of recent decades: ‘I always want to take the medium of photography into the picture, so that you are always aware that you are looking at an image - a photograph,’ he says, before continuing, ‘so, in the picture I hope you can see two things: the image itself, plus the reflection - or the thinking - about photography. I hope it’s visible. I’m an investigator, and it is as if I am investigating the grammar of photography.’” - from an interview with Thomas Ruff (my emphasis)

“The grammar of photography” sounds overly theoretical and/or conceptual, but it’s very important to realize that what Ruff is talking about is not obscure or academic: He is talking about what images do, how we treat them, what they say (or don’t say), what they might mean, whether they show any kind of “truth” etc.