Tokyo Opera City Art Gallery is pleased to be able to present an exhibition of the well-known artist, Wolfgang Tillmans.

Tillmans, who was born in Germany in 1968 and now lives and works in London, quickly became famous for the straight photographs of young people that he began publishing in the early 1990s. In his portraits, Tillmans directly captured the contradictions, complexities, and fragility of the identity of individual human beings. This work especially struck a chord with younger viewers, making Tillmans a spokesman for the youth culture.  In addition to a diverse array of thoughtfully treated subject matter, including interior scenes, still lives, fabric and clothing, and aerial views of cities, he has experimented in recent years with abstract images. These photographs, produced by directly fixing traces of light on photo-sensitive paper, explore the essence of photography.  Tillmans's growing international reputation was confirmed by his receipt of the "Turner Prize" in 2000. This was followed by a major solo exhibition that traveled to four European cities between 2001 and 2003 and an extremely successful individual exhibition at the Tate Britain the following year.
This exhibition is the first comprehensive presentation of Tillmans's work in Japanese museum.  It includes a video installation presented here along with an extensive selection of his photographs, including new work. Tillmans's adventurous and experimental approach, continually breaking with convention, is effectively expressed in the German word, "Freischwimmer," the title of his new series of abstract photographs. Referring to a person who swims or lives freely, it also appears as the title of this exhibition. In all of his creative work, Tillmans assiduously explores the essence of the age and expands the possibilities of expression in art and photography.

Copyright (c) 2004 Tokyo Opera City Cultural Foundation