Thomas Demand - Photographs New York Tuesday, October 2, 2012 | Phillips

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  • Provenance

    Victoria Miro Gallery, London
    Christie's, New York, 14 May 2002, lot 45

  • Literature

    The Museum of Modern Art, Thomas Demand, p. 83

  • Catalogue Essay

    As a graduate of the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf, the hub of groundbreaking contemporary German photography, Demand’s image Wand /Mural, 1999, epitomizes the renowned art school’s tenets of monumentality and irony. However, as opposed to his peers, including Andreas Gursky, Thomas Struth and Candida Höfer, Demand’s oversized images are not of sweeping vistas, massive crowds or grandiose interiors. Rather, they are of interiors crafted of construction paper by Demand. Moreover, after photographing them, Demand destroys the models, thereby ensuring that the photograph is the only record of the constructed space.

    In the current lot, Demand presents a paper collage of the world map. By including the floor, ceiling and even the electrical plug, Demand draws attention to the world as a construct on literal and metaphoric levels. This is further accentuated by the harsh lighting that casts a sharp shadow on the wall behind the collage. The final image, therefore, is not a study of the world’s geography but rather of its ephemeral materiality and fragile existence. That the model was subsequently destroyed reinforces the vulnerability of the world depicted and the world inhabited.


Wand/ Mural

Color coupler print, Diasec and flush-mounted.
72 x 106 1/4 in. (182.9 x 269.9 cm)
Number 3 from an edition of 6.

$120,000 - 180,000 

Sold for $242,500

Contact Specialist
Vanessa Kramer Hallett
Worldwide Head of Photographs
+ 1 212 940 1245


2 October 2012
New York