Bernhard Zimmer


Bernhard Zimmer was born in 1957 in Stuttgart, Germany. From 1978 to 1984, he completed an education in Cultural Studies in Hildesheim. Zimmer continues to live and work in Cologne. He has exhibited in Hanover, Munich, Dusseldorf, Basel, Gent, and Singapore to name a few. Zimmer has managed to create a positive stir at major international art fairs such as Art Basel and Kunst Köln.

Zimmer produces layered, subtly textured paintings that contain diametrically opposed elements—order and chaos, abstraction and representation, boldness and subtlety—in exquisite tension. Working with oil and mixed media on canvas, he paints in color-fields of soft shapes and delicate lines.

Like reliefs, his compositions are built up from numerous layers of material and mark-making. Grids of diaphanously rendered faces and blocks of illegible text emerge in rich washes of color, their surfaces shift with the light and changing position of the viewer. Full of strength and fragility, Zimmer’s works reward patient viewing, revealing their rich visual nuances to those who take time to delve into their layers.

Whether figurative or abstract, Zimmer’s artworks inherently alter the feeling of a space. Zimmer’s work oscillates between the Geometric Abstraction of Josef Albers and the sublimely layered color fields of Mark Rothko, with added figures that seem to be composed of shadows. This tension between form, color, and text create canvases with glowing compositions that reverberate with emotion.