Born in Kiel, Germany, Thomas Hoeffgen fell in love with photography while working on a ship full of troubled youths. The job was part of his mandatory national civic service and as the boat sailed around the Canary Islands Hoeffgen livened up the situation by making portraits of the kids, capturing spontaneous personal moments as well as the passing scenery. This was the beginning of Hoeffgen’s pictorial relationship with movement, foreshadowing his enduring ability to record fleeting moments in a reduced, minimalistic, and cinematic style.
After finishing his civic service, he moved to Spain at the age of twenty to assist the Mallorca-based art photographer Elizabeth Schäufler. Even before completing photography school, Thomas began commissioned work for prestigious sports clients such as Burton, Oxbow, and O’Neill, traveling all over the world to photograph athletes for their advertising campaigns.
This early work brought him into contact with fashion and advertising clients such as Timberland, Renault, Diesel, Maybelline, Escada, Laurel, Adidas, Microsoft, BMW, Swatch, Audi, Red Bull, Camel Active, Tommy Hilfiger, Hilton, Reebok, L.L.Bean and Wrangler all of whom were attracted to Thomas’s laidback, carefree style and by his energy and graphic simplicity in his images.
His work has been published in magazines such as Art, Blend, British Journal of Photography, ElPais, FAZ, GQ, Stern, SZ-Magazin, Spex, Instyle, Glamour, Elle, Marie Claire, PDN, Anglomania, Wallpaper, Zoom, NZZ, Playboy, and Outside Magazine.
He has exhibited in Hamburg (Dormoolen), Duesseldorf (NRW-Forum), Munich (Goldberg Studio), Salem (Schloss Salem), Grasten (Atelier Corn Benniksgaard), Lisbon (Canon Gallery), and most recenty in Berlin’s Ausweartiges Amt and Nuernberg’s Kuenstlerhaus, both in 2010, “Traummeanner” Deichtorhallen 2011, Pavlov´sDog Gallery Berlin 2011, Annroy Gallery London 2011, Mulimedia Art Museum (Moscau) Beauty in the 21st Century 2013, “Who Shot Sports” in Brooklyn (Brooklyn Museum) 2016 and “FOOTBALL” in Paris (Galerie Jean Denis Walter) 2016.
Awards for „African Arenas“: 2011 International Photography Award in the category photo books. Special mention at the 2011 LEAD Awards in Germany (LEAD awards exhibit at the Deichtorhallen, Hamburg).
Book: Thomas Hoeffgen’s AfricanArenas was published in 2010 by Hatje Cantz (edited by Nadine Barth).
He currently lives with his wife and daughter in Brooklyn, New York.