$100,000: that was the sum total of the dollar bills pinned to the walls of New York’s Guggenheim Museum in a work by Hans-Peter Feldmann, the winner of the Hugo Boss Prize 2010. The greenbacks were perfectly aligned, like works of art – yet they were only worth what society decided they were worth as Feldmann, one of Germany’s most influential artists, questioned the value of art.
Feldmann first appeared on the art scene at the end of the 1960s, composing and exhibiting albums made up of random images like postcards, newspaper cuttings and posters, which he classified in highly personal series. If any series was incomplete, Feldmann took photos of the missing subjects himself, thereby exploring the arcanes of everyday life. To him, the world of images which surrounds us is no more than an expression of our desires. Collecting and arranging them helps the main themes emerge, defining stereotyped portrayals of reality.