Andreas Gursky, known for his large-scale, often spectacular pictures, is considered to be one of the world’s greatest living photographers. His pictures portray sites and scenes of the global economy.

Al Jazeera’s Charlie Angela went along to a retrospective of his work in London.

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airports Stock Exchange's industrial complexes andreas gursky has earned a reputation as an artist documenting global capitalism from Chicago's Board of Trade to basket Weaver's in Vietnam the scale beauty and complexity of his epic photographs have reinvented the art form here on the walls of the Hayward Gallery Gus Keys photographs like almost like abstract paintings especially this one of Germany's River Rhine which sold for record 4.3 million dollars when I first saw this picture 20 years ago I thought of finding this gray patch of river that I wouldn't be able to because gursky removed the buildings and the dog walkers to create it it's an image of a place that doesn't exist but that doesn't make it any less beautiful his pictures are masterpieces of manipulation multiple shots taken from different angles are digitally spliced together some details are raised others repeated everything focused sharply your shots taken on that iPhone in person the German photographer is evasive about his methods too much about all the images are amazed they use a bit the secret mystery and maybe I should stop to talk too much about all the works despite his everyday subjects Gursky says he's not reporting on reality but looking at what is behind it like this ceiling of the French Communist Party headquarters designed by utopian Brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer half the lights are off perhaps a comment on what's happened to utopian dreams this is Gus keys first London retrospective and to bring it to life he collaborated closely with the hayward gallery's director i think he's doing something it's very different from what other people are doing and that is new and history but I think more important to me is the fact that whether you know a lot about contemporary art or you know nothing these images give you a very powerful encounter you can linger long over a girl ski studying the details because he wants you to read each picture line by line because the devil is in the detail charlie Angela al-jazeera London

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