Jörg Sasse's photographs are, as he puts it himself, the attempt “to produce a semblance of 'reality' in the image instead of a 'copy' of something. Having abandoned traditional photography as a means of reproducing reality, Sasse began manipulating photographs with the help of the computer in 1993. His raw material of choice is the amateur photo taken by strangers or himself. A selection of his enormous collection is digitalized and processed and these “sketches” serve as the pool of images that will undergo more intensive reworking. Only a few reach the status of a “picture.” The interventions are manifold and without the original for reference the result is often incomprehensible. The focal point has been shifted, the colors altered, details made clearer or more fuzzy, individual motifs have been repositioned within the frame or have disappeared altogether. Pictorial categories take precedence over motif. The result is intangible, confusing, beyond temporality.
„The enigma is what invariably eludes us in our desire to see and understand what surrounds us. It is this reality which is forever changing, fleeting, and disappointing behind the veil of appearances. Truth invariably crops up behind a curtain. (…) With the countless possibilities offered by the computer, the artist strives to process the very stuff of the image. He creates textures and structures which blur the usual features of the photograph, lending it a novel aspect akin to painting. (…) Time here becomes as abstract and illusory as the objectivity of photography. Everything is fiction, make believe, artificial a posteriori construction, this is what the author seems to be saying. In so doing, he brings us as close as possible to what our perception of reality conceals by way of packaging and affect. Jörg Sasse’s whole approach is in fact underpinned by an analysis of the mechanisms of perception – from the obsessive pursuit of disguised fragments of reality culminating in abstract compositions, to the deconstruction of the photographic image which unveils its particularly fictional essence. The artist hereby invites us to experience the reification of the world in the age of mechanical reproducibility of the visible, and the unreal aspect of an ever more virtual world.” (Guy Tosatto, Through the Image, in: Jörg Sasse, tableaux & esquisses, exhibition catalogue of the Musée de Grenoble, 2004)