Kathrin Isabell Rhomberg Austrian, b. 1990


In Kathrin Isabell Rhomberg's paintings, viewers are confronted with a world on a small scale, which superficially seems to play on a gradient of illusionism and at the same time reveals the painting in its fabrication.

The predominantly large and medium-sized oil paintings are created in series, with the current works examining the motif of folds. This motif, which has been anchored in art history for centuries, is translated into a contemporary language and linked to current discourses on the human-nature relationship, such as theories about the Anthropocene. The focus of interest is the painterly examination of the ambivalent relationship between the artificial / man-made and our image of the natural.


The paintings are based on macro shots of various (metallic) surfaces, such as aluminium foil or emergency blankets. Digital sketches are generated from the photographic starting material, which ultimately serve as the starting point for the painting process.

In her new compositions made from alienated set pieces, the minute details of everyday surfaces acquire an almost tilted-image-like effect. On the one hand the folds can be read as such, on the other hand they point beyond themselves; evoke associations of landscape, floral arrangements or even geological formations.


The choice of colors and the composition arise associatively, on the one hand, and on the other, they are fed by diverse art-historical and theoretical references, such as texts by Donna Harraway or Victor Stoichita. Occasionally, individual works from the history of painting are quoted directly, for example 'Kreidefelsen auf Rügen' (1818) by Caspar David Friedrich in THIS IS WATER (2022).