贝歇夫妇 (1959)

THE BECHERS

艺术市场观察

Bernd and Hilla Becher are the leading lights of « objective » photography in Germany. Their approach refutes the anecdotal and focuses on inventorying anonymous « industrial sculptures » that appear throughout our environment. The radicalism of their documentary work had a strong impact on their students including Andreas Gursky, Thomas Ruff, Thomas STRUTH and Candida HÖFER. This later generation of photographers assimilated much of the Becher’s approach, although sometimes freeing itself from the « objective » view of reality by altering their images. From an auction and museum preference point of view, the later generation seems to have become more popular than the objective purism of the Becher period.

In the mid-1990s, paintings were the only medium in the art market that investors considered of any speculative interest. But recently, with growing demand and a wave of artistic renewal, other creative formats have proved as, or more, lucrative than paintings. The photography market has been expanding rapidly for the past five years and is today one of the art world’s fastest-growth segments.

After a sluggish 2003, the photography market is now booming once again. With prestigious sales to take place at Sotheby’s, Christie’s and Phillips in the next few weeks, Artprice has taken stock of one of the art world’s most dynamic segments.

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