Thomas Zipp counts among the most significant German artists of the present day. Born in the Hessian town of Heppenheim in 1966 and a graduate in painting from the Städelschule in Frankfurt and the Slade School of Fine Art in London, Thomas Zipp has a preference for overall concepts that embrace all the different genres of his oeuvre: paintings, graphics, sculptures and installations. Ever since the 4th Berlin Biennale, Zipp's art installations have never failed to impress their audiences. Always operating within opposite, conflicting poles – norm and deviation, social acceptance and exclusion – Thomas Zipp this year transformed the vast interior of the Kunsthalle Fridericianum in Kassel into a "psychiatric asylum". Changed beyond recognition and their windows shaded against the sunlight, the exhibition rooms become "rooms of vision", scenes of explosive conflict of every conceivable kind, from scientific to religious, from political to esoteric. His installations are charged with meaning and content, featuring historical events that hold startling relevance for the present. Great scientists of the past or such religious reformers as Martin Luther now present their views, hypotheses and scientific achievements anew, take new stands and come under critical scrutiny within the context of a now globalized world. As "psychonauts" that have fundamentally changed the existing system, they now haunt its mood of world conspiracy. The stretchers of his canvases sometimes extend into stilt-like legs, lending them the mobility of banners carried in a protest march. Large-format paintings are paired with small framed collages in which the actual core – at once grim and umorous – of Zipp's concept lies: the human being in all his or her finitude.
In 2007, Thomas Zipp transformed the Rüdiger Schöttle Gallery into an "exciting ritual room". So let us now look forward eagerly and curiously to what awaits us in the forthcoming exhibition for Open Art 2010!
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