Auctioneers and Appraisers

Thomas Ruff (German, b. 1958) Porträt






American & European Works of Art - 3203B
Date / Time :
January 25, 2019 10:00AM


Thomas Ruff (German, b. 1958)

Porträt, 1986. Signed, numbered, and dated "Thomas Ruff 2/3..." in pencil on the reverse l.r. Chromogenic print face-mounted to acrylic, image size 65 3/4 x 51 in. (167.0 x 129.5 cm), framed.
Condition: Subtle surface scratches in margin l.r., tape residue or similar below sitter's chin.

Provenance: Collection of Maria Lopez and Stephen Mindich, Massachusetts.

N.B. Ruff began making portraits around 1980 at a time when the genre had largely disappeared from the curriculum of the Staatlichen Kunstakademie in Düsseldorf where he was a student. He decided on a specific format: bust length portraits of sitters in their regular clothes with calm, serious expressions on their faces. Between 1981 and 1985, Ruff photographed his subjects against a colored background and made prints measuring approximately 9 1/2 x 7 inches. Beginning in 1986, he began using a neutral background and printing at a much larger scale so that the presence of both the sitter and the photograph become intensified. The portrait on offer is from this latter group.
Estimate $7,000-9,000

Frame measures 85 7/8 x 69 in. (218.1 x 175.3 cm). The back of the work is visible, as the work is framed without a backing. Given the scale of the work shipping it out of the frame would be a tremendous challenge for the safety of the photograph.

The absence of a condition statement does not imply that the lot is in perfect condition or completely free from wear and tear, imperfections or the effects of aging. Condition requests can be obtained via email (lot inquiry button) or by telephone to the appropriate gallery location (Boston/617.350.5400 or Marlborough/508.970.3000). Any condition statement given, as a courtesy to a client, is only an opinion and should not be treated as a statement of fact. Skinner Inc. shall have no responsibility for any error or omission.


Maria Lopez, Stephen Mindich, Clothing, German art, Ruff, Thomas Ruff, Visual arts