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Jeff Wall lives in Vancouver, Canada.
He first studied art history, but soon began working as an artist alongside pursuing his theoretical activities. Since 1997 he presents large-format photographs in back-lit display cases. Walls calls himself, after Baudelaire, a ‹painter of modern life› and often bases the composition and contents of his images on nineteenth-century realism or the paintings of Eduard Manet.
Wall prepares his staged photographs well in advance: the scenes are casted with actors, copied photographically, and sometimes assembled or digitally post-processed. At first glance the images are often thoroughly unspectacular and divulge their complex structure only after a longer viewing. Walls concerns himself with visual symbols of modern life, which include forms of urban landscapes as an expression of ailing social structures.
Canadian fine art photographer Jeff Wall is known for his large scale photographic tableaux. His early work was influenced by the great painters of art history, such as Velázquez and Manet, has he made subtle references to their works through his compositions.
Wall's work has evolved over time, with him experimenting widely on how photography can be manipulated. His work Milk was part of a series of seemingly mundane, candid images that were, in actuality real life incidents later restaged with non-professional actors for cinematic effect. Since the 90s, Wall has become increasingly interested in digital manipulation, using laying multiple images within one final, composite composition.