Markus Brunetti - Photographs London Wednesday, May 25, 2022 | Phillips

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  • 'Sacred buildings represent the culture of the time in which they were built, which is what fascinates me about the façades of European churches.' —Markus Brunetti

    German artist Markus Brunetti (b. 1965) pushes boundaries of photographic scale, detail and precision in his approach to documenting architecture. Since 2005, Brunetti has travelled across Europe with his partner, Betty Schöner, living and working in their ‘expedition truck’ (a mobile computer lab), carefully recording religious landmarks for his series FACADES. His meticulous image-making process involves photographing the facade one square metre at a time from a fixed point then over a period of weeks to months, reconstructing it digitally by stitching up to 2,000 images together and removing all signs of modern life. ‘When capturing, I deconstruct the facades to the smallest unit’ explains Brunetti, ‘and when mounting the large images on our computer screens, we put these small details back into the big picture.’ The resulting image is a monumental, intricately detailed view with a flattened perspective similar to that of an architectural drawing as seen in the present work. Brunetti’s mesmerising depiction of the intricate blue tiles covering the Igreja de Santa Marinha de Cortegaça – one of the most beautiful churches in Portugal – makes this an outstanding example. His works reside in numerous institutions, including the Musée des Beaux-Arts, Le Locle, the National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa and the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City. 

    © Musée des Beaux-Arts Le Locle, 2016 / Lucas Olivet
    • Provenance

      Directly from the artist, 2014

    • Literature

      'European Church Facades Catch the Eye of a Nomadic Photographer', British Journal of Photography, #7843, January 2016, p. 54



Cortegaça, Paróquia de Santa Marinha from FACADES

Archival pigment print, mounted.
Image: 167.5 x 137.5 cm (65 7/8 x 54 1/8 in.)
Frame: 183.6 x 154 cm (72 1/4 x 60 5/8 in.)

Signed, titled, dated and numbered 3/9 in pencil on an artist label affixed to the reverse of the mount.

This work is number 3 from the sold-out edition of 9 + 2 APs. This image is sold out in all sizes and editions.


Full Cataloguing

£25,000 - 35,000 ‡♠

Sold for £40,320

Contact Specialist

Department Contacts 

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Head of Department, London

Yuka Yamaji
Head of Photographs, Europe

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London Auction 25 May 2022