At an auction in 2007 Andreas Gursky turned 99 cents into $3.34 million.
Well, sort of. Perhaps it’d be more accurate to say he turned 99 Cent II Diptychon, a photograph depicting an interior of a supermarket, into a few million. At the time this was the most expensive photograph in the world:
Even more amazing is that this was the third print of the same image that had sold for millions. Two others sold in 2006, one for $2.25 million and another for $2.48 million. Altogether the images earned $8.07 million. Not bad for a snapshot of a grocery store.
Gursky digitally altered the image to reduce perspective, forcing the viewer to see a familiar sight from a different perspective. Mostly what we notice in the picture is colors. In focusing on that aspect, though, the image draws our attention away from something beautiful and complex that we often take for granted. I’m neither an artist nor an art critic but I want to draw your eye to that feature.
Imagine if we zoomed in closer on the photograph. We might see something like this: