Unerringly and with a trace of mischief, Reinhard Voigt (born 1940 in Berlin) spent fifty years creating a largely unknown oeuvre in which he focussed primarily on two things: colour and beauty in art – pure pleasure.
His mostly large-format paintings are built on regular grids which at first glance recall computer pixels. But when he started painting, the pixels of digital images were still unknown. Voigt chooses his motifs from a broad range of sources including advertising and his own photography. He borrows from German (e.g. Sigmar Polke) and US painting (Pop art), while creating an unmistakable style all of his own.
The retrospective at Neues Museum Nürnberg, featuring around sixty paintings and the same number of drawings and photographs, is the first major show of Voigt’s work in Germany. After an apprenticeship as a ceramicist, he studied painting at Hamburg’s University of Fine Arts. With a break for a guest professorship in Germany, he lived in the United States from 1978 until his return to Berlin in 2017.
With works made between 1968 and 2023, the exhibition offers an in-depth analysis of Voigt’s artistic production up to his recent cooperation with Albert Kriemler, designer-in-chief at the Akris fashion label. The show also gives an insight into the artist’s working processes, juxtaposing drawings, sketches and paintings with conceptual works from his photographic oeuvre.