Inspired by Andreas Gursky’s 2011 photograph Rhein II, Swiss photographers Jojakim Cortis and Adrian Sonderegger set themselves a challenge: could they reconstruct that image in their Zürich studio? They made a miniature diorama of Rhein II which they then photographed. The image was such a success that it became the starting point for a larger project: photographing miniature recreations of iconic images that captured pivotal historical events.
The book DOUBLE TAKE: The World’s Most Iconic Photographs Meticulously Re-created in Miniature (Thames & Hudson, 2018) presents the result of Cortis and Sonderegger’s series: thirty-nine astonishingly accurate reconstructions of iconic photographs, that range from the earliest known to the world’s most expensive, including The First Powered Flight of the Wright Brothers by John Thomas Daniels, Flatiron – Evening by Edward J. Steichen, Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima by Joe Rosenthal, Milk Drop Coronet by Harold Edgerton, and The Hindenburg Disaster by Sam Shere, among many others.
“The significance that some images have in our collective memory is shown in the afterlife that they lead” writes art historian Florian Ebner in the book’s introduction. “Major historical images not only live on in endless reproductions and publications, but also persist secondarily in the form of parody or homage.” Rather than focusing on re-enacting, restaging, or Photoshopping well-known images as other artists have, he notes that Cortis and Sonderegger “take a different approach. They emphasize the space and the construction of the image. They restore the depth of the three-dimensional space to the two-dimensional surface of the photographic icons, returning the instant in the past that has become enshrined in history to the constructed, present-moment of their studio.”
Showcasing a technical tour de force, DOUBLE TAKE asks of image-making: can the image ever be trusted? With photographs showing the reconstruction process, an essay by photography curator Christian Caujolle, and an in-depth interview with Cortis and Sonderegger.
DOUBLE TAKE: The World’s Most Iconic Photographs Meticulously Re-created in Miniature
by Jojakim Cortis and Adrian Sonderegger
Thames & Hudson, June 5, 2018
128 pages, 88 illustrations in color and b&w
$40.00 hardcover, ISBN: 9780500021224