Contemporary abstract artist Peter Zimmermann first became famous in the 1980’s for his collections Cardboard Boxes and Book Covers. He’s one of the most celebrated abstract artists, largely because of his ability to eschew any recognisable technical aesthetic, enabling viewers to see his work in a conceptual sense. This isn’t to say that Zimmermann doesn’t have his own unique style.
He uses airbrushing and methods of digital manipulation to change and morph images – photographs, for example – until the vibrant pieces that finally go on display bear almost no resemblance to their original form. In Book Covers, for example, he morphed and edited the covers of classic books and catalogues.
The outcome is a series of colourful works that embody a kind of kinesis. Everything about his artwork, his “blob paintings” in particular, suggests movement and change. He transforms the familiar into the unfamiliar. It’s like viewing something under a microscope; suddenly, an innocuous object is brought to life with dividing, changing cells.
Once the image has been created, Zimmermann transfers it to canvas and carefully applies a layer of epoxy resin on top. The effect is one of light, emanating from this abstract image and it gives his work yet another dimension.
Although he currently lives and works in Cologne, his work has been exhibited everywhere from New Orleans to Salzburg. His solo exhibition at Anima Gallery, Diffusion, is a chance to see a range of Zimmermann’s mesmerising paintings from a variety of collections. Certainly, a not-to-be-missed exhibition this year.
Until April 18. Open Sun-Thu 10am-7pm. Anima Gallery, Porto Arabia, The Pearl-Qatar, www.animagallerylounge.com (4002 7437).