Neo Rauch  b. 1960


Neo Rauch’s paintings are characterized by a unique combination of realism and surrealist abstraction. In many of his compositions, human figures engaged in manual labor or indeterminable tasks work against backdrops of mundane architecture, industrial settings, or bizarre and often barren landscapes. These figures, though squarely centered in his paintings, often have the appearance of being part of still lifes devoid of a human presence or collaged elements belonging to different time zones. Scale is frequently arbitrary and non-perspectival, which adds to an overall dream-like atmosphere; the spatial relationships construct their own imaginary realm.


Rauch was born in 1960 in Leipzig, where he continues to live and work, and studied at the Hochschule für Grafik und Buchkunst. Since 2000, Rauch's work has been represented by David Zwirner. The artist has had five solo exhibitions at the gallery in New York, where he had his United States debut in 2000. Other gallery solo exhibitions include Heilstätten (2011), Neo Rauch (2008), Renegaten (2005), and Neo Rauch (2002). Marking the artist's sixth presentation at David Zwirner, New York will be a solo show of new work that will open in November 2014. 


Rauch's work has been the subject of several solo exhibitions at prominent institutions internationally, most recently in 2013 at the Palais des Beaux-Arts in Brussels. In 2010, the artist had his first major museum retrospective at the Museum der Bildenden Künste Leipzig and the Pinakothek der Moderne, Munich. A version of this retrospective was shown at the Zachęta National Gallery of Art, Warsaw, in 2011. Other venues which have presented solo exhibitions include the Museum Frieder Burda, Baden-Baden, Germany; Essl Museum, Klosterneuburg, Austria (both 2011); The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Galerie Rudolfinum, Prague (both 2007); Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal; Kunstmuseum Wolfsburg, Germany (both 2006); Centro de Arte Contemporáneo Málaga, Spain (2005); Albertina, Vienna (2004); and the Bonnefantenmuseum, Maastricht, The Netherlands (2002).


The Grafikstiftung Neo Rauch opened in June 2012 in the artist's hometown of Aschersleben, Germany. The foundation is dedicated to maintaining and preserving Rauch's entire graphic oeuvre.


Major museum collections which hold works by the artist include the Gemeentemuseum, The Hague; Hamburger Bahnhof - Museum für Gegenwart, Berlin; Kunstmuseum Wolfsburg, Germany; Los Angeles County Museum of Art; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Museum der Bildenden Künste Leipzig; Museum Ludwig, Cologne; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; Pinakothek der Moderne, Munich; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; among others.


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