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Peter Tillessen

Superficial Images © Peter Tillessen

Peter Tillessen, Superficial Images
Spector Books, Leipzig, 2016

ISBN 978-3-95905-116-3

At first glance, Peter Tillessen’s “superficial images” form a heterogeneous catalogue of insignificant everyday moments, which are commented on almost nonchalantly. However, throughout the pages, motifs are repeated and intersect, including self-portraits entitled “surviving” [a known artist], motorists termed “addicted” [to gasoline], or “the world without” [such a tyrant]. Amid these images, the narrator gradually an implicitly reveals himself. He hints that he is unreliable, but offers enough clues for his reader to tease out interpretations — did he, for example, photograph what was around him when he learned of the death of a dictator? — without, however, giving him the satisfaction of having elucidated his approach. This collection of photographs thus comments, in a manner of sorts, on the odd and inspired world, tempted as much by the poetry of the wedding dance of aircraft criss-crossing in the sky as by the subtle cruelty of gratuitous judgment on strangers. [Danaé Panchaud]