Jpegs: Thomas Ruff and the horror of digital photography

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

This article analyses the aesthetics of digital compression as revealed in Thomas Ruff’s Jpegs series of photographs (2004–07). These images exhibit a poor standard of digital picture resolution fixed as large-scale, high-quality, lustrous C-type photographic prints. With reference to Vilém Flusser’s writing on photography, I argue that Ruff’s work discloses a ‘horror of digital photography’: a system of automated representation, which inverts our relationship to the photographic image.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)93-109
Number of pages17
JournalPhilosophy of Photography
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 24 Jan 2023

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • compression
  • contemporary art
  • Düsseldorf School
  • Flusser
  • poor image
  • post-internet


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