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Havana Biennial 2019: Constructing the Possible Ocula Report Havana Biennial 2019: Constructing the Possible 17 Apr 2019 : Federica Bueti for Ocula

I first visited Havana in November 2016, a few days after Fidel Castro died, and just under a year before Hurricane Irma hit Cuba in September 2017. Since then, much has changed, including the hand-painted signs that punctuate the journey from the airport to the city centre, which today do not celebrate the revolution so much as the 'Unidad y...

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Andrew Stahl and Guo Xiaohui Ocula Conversation Andrew Stahl and Guo Xiaohui

The exhibition Beyond Boundaries at Somerset House in London (12 March–2 April 2019) marked the historic contributions of the Central Academy of Fine Arts, Beijing (CAFA) and the Slade School of Fine Art, University College London, on the occasion of their 100th and 150th anniversaries, respectively. Spread across several rooms of Somerset House's...

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The National 2019: New Australian Art Ocula Report The National 2019: New Australian Art 13 Apr 2019 : Elyse Goldfinch for Ocula

The National 2019: New Australian Art features work by 70 contemporary Australia-based artists split across three venues: the Art Gallery of New South Wales (AGNSW), Carriageworks, and the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia (MCA) (29 March–21 July 2019), as curated by Isobel Parker Philip, curator of photographs at AGNSW; Daniel Mudie Cunningham,...

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Tomma Abts

b. 1967, Germany

Tomma Abts makes complex paintings and works on paper whose subject is ultimately the process of their creation. She begins each work with no preconceived composition and idea, and without preliminary sketches. Guided largely by intuition, she nevertheless works within precise parameters. The paintings' evolution is evidenced by ridges and uneven texture—the result of methodical overpainting and reworking of the image. While abstract, the works are still illusionistic, rendered with sharp attention to shadows, three-dimensional effects, and highlights that defy any single, realistic light source. The resulting canvases convey balance and movement, while maintaining a sense of uncertainty, which seems akin to memory.

Born in 1967 in Kiel, Germany, Abts studied at Hochschule der Künste in Berlin from 1988 to 1995.

Featured Artworks

Ehme by Tomma Abts contemporary artwork Tomma AbtsEhme, 2002 Acrylic and oil on canvas
48 x 38 cm
Galerie Buchholz
Untitled #1-7 by Tomma Abts contemporary artwork Tomma AbtsUntitled #1-7, 2016 7 parts, pencil and coloured pencil on paper
Galerie Buchholz
Jelto by Tomma Abts contemporary artwork Tomma AbtsJelto, 2017 Broze cast
48 x 37.5 cm
Galerie Buchholz
Telko by Tomma Abts contemporary artwork Tomma AbtsTelko, 2017 Acrylic on oil on canvas
48 x 38 cm
Galerie Buchholz

Recent Exhibitions

Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, Vista View at Galerie Buchholz, New York
Closed
31 January–20 April 2019 Group Exhibition Vista View Galerie Buchholz, New York
Contemporary art exhibition, Tomma Abts, Tomma Abts at Galerie Buchholz, Berlin
Closed
10 November 2017–13 January 2018 Tomma Abts Tomma Abts Galerie Buchholz, Berlin
Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, Group Exhibition at Galerie Buchholz, Berlin
Closed
3 March–15 April 2017 Group Exhibition Group Exhibition Galerie Buchholz, Berlin

Represented By

In Related Press

Tomma Abts CHICAGO Related Press Tomma Abts CHICAGO Art in America : 1 January 2019

The thirty-two small, abstract paintings in Tomma Abts's show, which the Art Institute co-organized with the Serpentine Galleries in London, recall what Ezra Pound said he was trying to do with his short imagist poems: ...

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Tomma Abts’ intriguing paintings contain infinite worlds Related Press Tomma Abts’ intriguing paintings contain infinite worlds Hyperallergic : 11 July 2018

The stark white walls of the Serpentine Sackler Gallery are dotted with colourful eruptions, each contained within a 48 x 38 cm canvas, the trademark format of the painter Tomma Abts. Their small size pulls the viewer in closer until we become intimately engaged with each concentrated schema. In their clearly delineated, geometric formations the...

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Duncan Campbell Turner Prize Winner 2014 Related Press Duncan Campbell Turner Prize Winner 2014 Anita Singh for The Telegraph UK / 1 December 2014 : 2 December 2014

Duncan Campbell is the winner of this year’s Turner Prize with a 54-minute film that even the chairman of the jury described as “a bit baffling”. Campbell’s film, It for Others (2013), is a montage of Marxist economics, contemporary dance, comedy ketchup bottles, African tribal masks and images of the IRA member Joe McCann.

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Dear Painter … Related Press Dear Painter … Frieze : 1 February 2012

What does the term 'abstraction' mean to non-figurative painters working today? I spoke to five artists - Tomma Abts, Tauba Auerbach, Matt Connors, Charline von Heyerl and Bernd Ribbeck - all of whom make work grounded in process and materiality. There is a dissonance between the directness of their work and the fuzzier set of interests and...

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