"The reality in front of the camera is reality of the first degree, the image of the reality in front of the camera is reality of the second degree, and after that, there are all possible finer degrees and falsifications."
Thomas Ruff, 2009
Thomas Ruff ranks among the world's most important contemporary artists. His work has been marked up to the present by a considered approach to the means and possibilities of photography with respect to the information contained by images. Ruff began in 1979 to analyze the various genres of photography: from portraiture to architectural and press photography to the nude - looking at them in terms of their visual expressiveness. The breadth of his themes can also be seen in the range of techniques he employs: alongside the analogue and digital exposures he has taken himself and his own computer generated pictures, he also uses photographs from scientific archives, and reworked pictures culled from newspapers, magazines and the internet.