Bernd and Hilla Becher (1931-) (1934-) German artists, living in Düsseldorf. Bernd and Hilla Becher photograph industrial architecture - from the family mine to the corporate steel mill - constructed for, and sometimes left behind, by industry. Although Bernd first studied painting and Hilla photography, they shared a fascination with this subject. In 1959, they realized their common interest after meeting at an advertising agency in Düsseldorf, where they both worked, and they marry in 1961, Hilla later became the first instructor in photography at the Staatlichen Kunstakademie, Düsseldorf; she was subsequently joined there by her husband. They have dramatically influenced their students, some of whom are now recognized in their own right, including Andreas Gursky, Thomas Ruff, and Thomas Struth. Over the last three decades, a selection of images from several series have been published in book form including Water Towers, Blast Furnaces, Pennsylvania Mine Tipples, Gas Tanks, and in 1995, Industrial Facades. The Bechers' photographs are exhibited individually, but more commonly in groupings that they specifically arrange. It is their organization of the thousands of images into typologies that encourages further attention to the subtlety and variation of like structures. Each print is always the same size, and each is framed similarly. Retrospectives: 1975, Rheinisches Landesmuseum, Bonn, 1981, Stedelijk van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven. Participated in "Documenta 6", in 1977 and in Photography and Art, 1946-86, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, 1987, among others. Live in Düsseldorf.