Bernd and Hilla Becher

Bernd and Hilla Becher were German photographers who graduated from Kunstakademie in Düsseldorf, this art school was notorious for teaching an objective style of photography. Bernd and Hilla were no exception as they began to document disappearing German industrial architecture, photographic thousands of objects such as gas tanks and water towers. They would constantly compare the photos to show slight changes between objects. They shot only on overcast days, to avoid shadows, and early in the morning during the seasons of spring and fall  they did this so they could keep a consistent comparison between objects. The Bechers also photographed outside Germany, including from 1965 buildings in Great Britain, France, Belgium and later in the United States. In 1966, they undertook a six-month journey through England and south Wales, taking hundreds of photographs of the coal industry around Liverpool, Manchester, Sheffield, Nottingham and the Rhondda Valley.


Subjective\objective photography

Objective photography:

Objective photography is not influenced by feelings, interpretations or prejudice, it is based on facts and is unbiased. This means that the photos don’t convey opinion they only show what is there and not what could be there. Objective photography is often also based on senses and tries to stimulate senses they do this by showing things as they are and don’t cover anything up.

Objective photos often use things like

Subjects: People and objects

Settings:  Indoors, outdoors, seasons and times

Actions: Events and relationships

Subjective photography:

Subjective photography doesn’t convey direct opinions and wants the audience to find the meaning, they could also have different meanings depending on the audience. Subjective photos use the photographers ideas, thoughts and opinions

Martin Parr

Martin grew up in many places including London, Surrey and Yorkshire but he now lives in Bristol. In many of the places he grew up he lived in the suburbs which helped to develop his photographic style, which is subjective and he tries to show tradition aspects of life

Many of his photos look like a snapshot style, for example he takes photos of people on the beach and of food

During the thatcher era he took most of his work at beaches and tried to show things like class in his work

Parr was considered very british in style as he tried to show how things really are


German arts school:

Jurgen Teller- Photo diaries- Fashion photographer- snapshots

Wolfgang Tillsman- Fashion photographer- diaries- honesty- doesn’t like arty photohraphy

Albert Rener Patzsch- Commercial photographer- ‘photography should be art’

August Sander- Pre world war one photographer- recorded people emotions through photography- commercial photographer- followed the German economic collapse

Bernd Becher- Objective- Documentation- Compairing architecture

Thomas Ruff- Studio photographer- Large 6ft photographs- Compares people

Thomas Pemand- Creates reality- ‘photos can trick you’


Most expensive photo ever sold, £340,000- massive scale photos- High angles, Far away, panoramics, edits photos- classic Victorian composition, dull, globalisation- Gursky’s photos can’t be replecated- when reality doesn’t look right he creates it