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Le flou : détournement de l'image d'archive chez Gerhard Richter, Christian Boltanski et Thomas Ruff

Abstract : The blur, as a widespread artistic effect, is still victim of a bad reputation, since it is usually considered to be a technical fault or the opposite of a rational and rigorous thinking. Against this reductive vision, this research tries to show, throughout a selection of artworks from Gerhard Richter, Christian Boltanski and Thomas Ruff, that the blur is an artistic act which arouses a distanced and critical reflection. We elaborate a comparative study of each artist's creation process, and an analysis of archival image features appropriated by them : amateur photographs and press images. The blur seems to represent an efficient method of appropriation and détournement. It highlights the image material in spite of its representational function, and it allows to transgress the borders between painting and photography. The blur is also sign of distance : between artworks and spectators, as well as between artists and appropriated images. However, the detachment of artists doesn't prevent them from expressing a critical thinking over images they use. For it is in integrating archival images with topics varying from daily banality and major historic events in their artworks, that the artists examine the social uses and the media reproduction of images. But the blur proved mainly to be a strategy to cross the borders between shape and material, objectivity and subjectivity, or mass culture and fine art. It is above all, a dynamic concept used for transgression.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, May 12, 2021 - 3:41:12 PM
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Shui-Jou Wu. Le flou : détournement de l'image d'archive chez Gerhard Richter, Christian Boltanski et Thomas Ruff. Art et histoire de l'art. Université Panthéon-Sorbonne - Paris I, 2016. Français. ⟨NNT : 2016PA01H323⟩. ⟨tel-03225484⟩

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