Wolfgang Tillmans, Lutz & Alex sitting in the trees, 1992 / Courtesy of the artist, David Zwirner, New York / Hong Kong, Galerie Buchholz, Berlin / Cologne, Maureen Paley, London
Wolfgang Tillmans: To look without fear
Nov 11, 2023 – Mar 3, 2024
SFMoMa
San Francisco, USA

Wolfgang Tillmans: To look without fear is the most comprehensive exhibition of the influential artist’s work to date, charting the development of his practice from the 1980s through the present, across every genre of photography imaginable. From early experiments with a photocopier to ecstatic nightlife images, intimate portraits, incisive documentation of social movements, and innovative cameraless abstractions, Tillmans’s broad subject matter reveals his steadfast commitment to engage unflinchingly with the world.

Tillmans plays an integral role in designing and installing his exhibitions. This survey features both framed and unframed photographs arranged in constellations that extend from floor to ceiling, magazine pages taped to the wall, video work, and his Truth Study Center table installations. This approach embraces the concept of visual democracy, where, as Tillmans puts it, “If one thing matters, everything matters.”

Wolfgang Tillmans has engaged the world through photography for over 30 years, working with an uncommon openness, sensitivity, and desire for human connection. Throughout his career, he has explored a wide variety of subjects in various forms: black-and-white photocopies, intimate portraits, still lifes, astronomical observations, cameraless abstractions, videos, and more. This diverse practice is united by Tillmans’s drive to depict the full range of what he encounters – from the mundane and personal to the unusual, ecstatic, and political.

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