Tom Hofmann is advertising photographer, graphic designer and visual artist. He lives and works in Vienna, Austria/Europe. His photography centers on the erotic, including fetish and bondage images. Although experimental and conceptual images excite him, “everyday” themes are just as intriguing for him. He envisions his work as extracted frames from a movie, chosen to dramatize the intensity of the moment presented. His work is captured in a way that allows for single frames to stand alone and speak for themselves but also for combined frames to come together and bring a new perspective through the story being shown.
He has shown his work in various exhibitions, has been featured in the book „Raw Beauties – A Polaroid Project“, in Magazines (PRYME, Séparée) and a number of times in „Photodarium“ (a tear-off calendar that reveals a new instant photo each day).
Georg Barkas about Tom Hofmann (foreword to the self-published book 'concepts life erotic bondage')
When I was first asked by my dear friend Tom Hofmann to write a foreword to his collection of photographic works, I said to myself that it is an interesting task. I like the idea of a textual foreword to a book without words. The most interesting part for me is the question of what a foreword in this special case could look like. I wished to avoid a mere description of the pictures, and I do not want to tell the ‘reader’ what they will find in the book as this would rob them of the opportunity to form their own opinions. Furthermore, the collection of Tom’s photographic art is so diverse that it is hard to find the continuity which is so often demanded in various fields of art. At the same time, it is exactly this lack of continuity which makes it so interesting.
What, then, should I include in a foreword? I looked through the collection in Tom’s first draft and found my route in one of the pictures.
That one specific picture is a violent attack on the reader. It is one that screams that something is wrong, not only with the picture but with the world. In it, the borders between signifier and signified become almost indistinct. In the picture, a book is visible – Helmut Lethen’s “Der Schatten des Fotografen” or “The photographer’s shadow”. (Incidentally, Helmuth Lethen knows of his book’s appearance in Tom’s picture.) Lethen’s book shows the reader what is laying behind the pictures without setting up a fixed opinion about the picture itself. It tells us who the reader of pictures could be and who the author of a picture is.
The picture with the book and the book in the picture convinced me not to try to describe Tom Hofmann’s pictures, but to encourage the reader to rather look behind his incredibly diverse collection. In “concepts | life | erotic | bondage”, Tom Hofmann tells us who he might be.
Together, through their disconnectedness, the pictures show the shadow of the photographer – the shadow of Tom Hofmann. And it is, to me, an interesting and beautiful shadow. (Georg Barkas, May 2017)
Georg Barkas holds a master’s degree in mathematical physics, and pursued a PhD in history and philosophy of science in Vienna and Berlin. His research was and is strongly influenced by the French poststructuralist movement. In 2014, Barkas quit academia to become a professional artist, educator, writer and researcher in the field of Japanese Rope Art.
2003: Joint Exhibition > WUK Vienna
2012: Participant > iso600 Festival della Fotografia Istantanea Milano
2013: Participant > 8×10 Selección - Impossible Project Space Barcelona
2013: Participant > MIA Milan Image Art Fair
2013: Participant > Prexer, Łódź/Poland
2014: Participant > Raw Beauties | A Polaroid Project > Wanrooij Gallery, Amsterdam
2014: Participant > fotofever art fair > Carrousel du Louvre, Paris
2015: Solo Exhibition > III. viennese rope festival > Ottakringer Brauerei, Vienna
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2012: Participant > Photodarium
2013: Participant > Photodarium
2014: Participant > Raw Beauties | A Polaroid Project
2015: Participant > Photodarium
2015: Participant > PRYME Magazine, Issue #4, prymeeditions.com
2015: Feature > Séparée Magazine, Issue #6, separee.com
2016: Participant > Photodarium
2016: 12-page couple photo series > Séparée Magazine, Issue #9, separee.com
2017: Participant > Photodarium Private
2017: Monograph > self published, print-on-demand, concepts life erotic bondage
2018: Participant > Photodarium Private
2018: Project Zine > self published, print-on-demand, Egon Schiele RemiXed