Ralph Merschmann


Ralph Merschmann’s explorations in painting aim for a maximum of visual complexity. Beginning with colorful spots and circles, which are not painted in the usual sense, but applied to panels in a special process, the artist successively organizes his paintings – that is, by layering modular figures so that they become rich, ornamental compositions, testifying to a substantial expertise. It is not the declination of a normative order (as is the case with Op Art) that characterizes the artist’s understanding of his work, but rather a sumptuous individual structure – and all the more so, because the long work process leads to deviations and asymmetry that shift the rapport into a state of perpetual motion.

As many of his small to medium-size paintings seem like pieces from a fantastical art cabinet, they often reveal a Mannerist visual concept, in the sense of a kind of continual refinement and exaggeration, out of which hybrids are the result. Especially meaningful here is the moment provoked by the artist, in which the sum of the pictorial elements lose their definite individuality in favor of complex networks culminating in visual tumult and pictorial camouflage. His paintings then open up space for very different interpretations and allusions – a spectrum ranging from the revival of secret Old Master techniques to the buoyant elegance of pop culture.

 


 


VITA
 

1963
born in Lippstadt

1985-92
Academy of Fine Arts, Münster, Master student of Prof. Ulrich Erben

2003
Artist in Residence, Fellowship of North-Rine Westfalia, Schloss Ringenberg

lives and works in Cologne

 

SOLO EXHIBITIONS (SELECTION)

2018
Betatron, Städtische Galerie Lippstadt

2017
Wappenklasse, Rasche Ripken, Berlin

2016
Full Heavy Rose, Galerie Marlies Stachowitz, Paderborn
Saphir, Galerie Gudrun Selz, Freiburg

2015
Pluto, Galerie Marlies Stachowitz, Paderborn

2014
Mengenlehre, Rasche Ripken, Berlin

2012
Superset, Galerie Gudrun Selz, Freiburg
Oomph, Rasche Ripken, Berlin
Pearl & Earl, Kunstverein Ahaus (with Rita Kanne)

2011
Merck, Finck & Co, Düsseldorf (with Martin Huidobro)

2010
Polyphon, Kunstverein Lippstadt

2009
Pearls, Kunstverein Unna (with Rita Kanne)
Mabuse, Rasche Ripken, Berlin
Galerie Hans Strelow, Düsseldorf

2008
Ladybird, Artothek, Cologne

2006
Einod, Galerie Stefan Rasche, Münster (with Rita Kanne)

2004
Galerie Hans Strelow, Düsseldorf

2002  
Städtische Galerie im Rathaus, Lippstadt (with Inge Bolley)
Galerie Januar, Bochum

2001
Serienreife, Schloss Ringenberg, Hamminkeln
(with Ralph Künzler)
Galerie Hans Strelow, Düsseldorf
Galerie Stefan Rasche, Münster

1998
Galerie Mueller-Roth, Stuttgart

1996
Städtische Galerie im Rathaus, Lippstadt
Galerie Stefan Rasche, Münster

1994
Galerie Stefan Rasche, Münster (with Rita Kanne)

1991
Galerie Stefan Rasche, Münster (with Rita Kanne)

 

GROUP EXHIBITIONS (SELECTION)

2018
Artisten – Hugo Koch zu Ehren, Galerie Januar, Bochum
Full House –  10 Jahre, Rasche Ripken, Berlin

2017
Summertime, Galerie Hans Strelow, Düsseldorf
Zeigen. Eine Audiotour durch die Sammlung der Galerie für zeitgenössische Kunst, Leipzig

2016
Widerstände, Kunstverein Unna

2015  
Muster*prozess, Rasche Ripken, Berlin

2014
25 Jahre Kunstverein Lippstadt, Kunstverein Lippstadt

2012
Full House, Rasche Ripken, Berlin
LP: akut, Städtische Galerie Lippstadt

2011
Fade away and radiate, Rasche Ripken, Berlin

2010
Blendwerk – barocke Haltungen in der zeitgenössischen Kunst,
Schloss Achberg

2008
Etwas bleibt immer hängen, Rasche Ripken, Berlin
Zeigen – eine Audiotour. Museum Abteiberg, Mönchengladbach

2007
countdown, Galerie Stefan Rasche, Münster
maniera, Galerie Stefan Rasche, Münster
Kunst Raum Zeit, Kunstverein Lippstadt

2005
Mehr als genug, Künstlerhaus Dortmund
5 Positionen zur Malerei, Kunstverein Krefeld
sechzehnsechzehnplus, Galerie Mueller-Roth, Stuttgart
Neue Heimat 1, Galerie Stefan Rasche, Münster

2004
Hier und jetzt, Gustav-Lübcke-Museum, Hamm

2003
Good News, Galerie Stefan Rasche, Münster
Stipendiaten 2003, Schloss Ringenberg, Hamminkeln
Transistor II, Museum für Moderne Kunst, Arnheim

2001
Bergauf!, Galerie Stefan Rasche, Münster

2000
Farbräume, Diözesanmuseum Paderborn
Von Haus zu Haus, Städtische Galerie Lüdenscheid
Galerie Mueller-Roth, Stuttgart