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PORTFOLIO

03.11.2015

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Guy Tillim spent many years of his career as a photographer dedicated to covering social conflicts and producing documentary images aimed at shaking up the viewer. Until one day he realised that this method of photography no longer satisfied him. For some time now, Tillim has been intensely focussing his attention on capturing images of cityscapes.

Berlin’s streets, Berlin’s inner courtyards: equipped with a Leica SL, Guy Tillim wandered around Berlin without any concrete goal in mind; yet it is not the motifs themselves that take centre stage but rather his attempt to approach them in an impartial manner. The results are diptychs that reflect reality in so far as they neither show clichés, nor make a strong effort to avoid them. He is now concerned with finding a value-neutral position towards the elements of a composition. People, buildings, trees, and pillars – nothing is of particular importance and yet everything can be possessed with deep meaning. Who determines for us what is beautiful and what is not?

“Political neutrality is a luxury, personal neutrality is not: it’s the achievement of a lifetime”, the photographer said.

Tillim does not allow the viewer easy access, he does not want his diptychs to point an easy way to the motif – the viewer must find the theme by him or herself, and can only discover the meaning for him or herself. The photographer himself does not care. Arranged as diptychs, the work breaks the composition into individual images, showing a perspective that is not in Tillim’s mind, but rather what is actually visible in front of him – in the middle of Berlin.


Read the full article in LFI 8/2015, deliverable as from 6th of November 2015.

Guy Tillim

Born in Johannesburg in 1962, Tillim saw photography as his weapon in the fight against the Apartheid regime. In the eighties he worked as a reporter and joined Afrapix, the South African photo association. In 2005 he won the Leica Oskar Barnack Award. In more recent years, the photographer has been focussing primarily on conceptual land/cityscapes. Tillim lives near Cape Town and is represented by the VU’ Agency.

www.agencevu.com
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