Spotlight: German Artist Philipp Fürhofer’s Lightbox Paintings Dazzle the Eye While Asking Viewers to Reconsider What’s Real

The artist's third solo exhibition is now on view at Berlin's Galerie Judin.

Philipp Fürhofer. Courtesy of Galerie Judin.
Philipp Fürhofer. Courtesy of Galerie Judin.

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About the Artist: Bavaria-born artist Philipp Fürhofer (b. 1982) creates otherworldy artworks made from oil paint on acrylic glass, mirrors, and LED tubes. Fürhofer’s works have a transformative quality, affecting the spaces around them, and perhaps that’s unsurprising given the artist’s experiences designing for theaters. While still a student at the Berlin University of the Arts, he became acquainted with artist Hans Neuenfels, who works in experimental theater, and who first helped Fürhofer get his start in theater design. His work was recently exhibited in the rotunda of the Schirn Kunsthalle in Frankfurt and has served as backdrops in opera productions in Bayreuth and London’s Covent Garden. Now, Philipp Fürhofer is presenting his third solo exhibition “The Truths Behind” with Berlin’s Galerie Judin, which represents the artist.

Why We Like It: The hypnotic exhibition presents Fürhofer’s lightbox works, painted with landscapes and figurative images that call to mind both the traditions of German Romantic landscape painting and contemporary immersive art experiences. In his most recent works, the artist has created four lightbox sculptures timed to complex light cycles that activate his paintings on glass and mirrors. A recent development is that Fürhofer began to condense his three-dimensional layering onto a single surface. Rather than painting on multiple panes of glass to create an effect, he reinterprets classical reverse glass painting, and for the exhibition has created 12 glass works in which both the fronts and backs of the panes have been painted. The artist is interested in the tension between how perception distorts reality and, in that sense, takes inspiration from the work of the Berlin Dadaists.

According to the Gallery: “Fürhofer understands his recent works as reflections of our (media) world, which has become ever more complex once again and in which we are constantly bombarded with images and text messages. Sorting, analyzing, and evaluating all these bits and pieces of information has become our daily routine—not just in times of climate crisis and pandemic. In an age of “alternative facts,” we are challenged with discerning truths and untruths behind thick layers of reception. Fürhofer has now transferred this process into his art. In a process reminding us of collage, he superimposes elements, also allowing deeper layers to shimmer through with the help of omissions or scratches,” said Galerie Judin in a statement.

See works by the artist below.

Philipp Fürhofer, Waldboden (2021). © The artist; photo: Henning Moser Courtesy Galerie Judin, Berlin.

Philipp Fürhofer, Waldboden (2021). © The artist; photo: Henning Moser Courtesy Galerie Judin, Berlin.

Philipp Fürhofer Austausch (2021). © The artist; photo: Henning Moser Courtesy Galerie Judin, Berlin.

Philipp Fürhofer, Austausch (2021). © The artist; photo: Henning Moser Courtesy Galerie Judin, Berlin.

Philipp Fürhofer, Living (2021). © The artist; photo: Henning Moser Courtesy Galerie Judin, Berlin.

Philipp Fürhofer, Living (2021). © The artist; photo: Henning Moser Courtesy Galerie Judin, Berlin.

Philipp Fürhofer, Beauté Naturelle (2021). © The artist; photo: Henning Moser Courtesy Galerie Judin, Berlin.

Philipp Fürhofer, Beauté Naturelle (2021). © The artist; photo: Henning Moser Courtesy Galerie Judin, Berlin.

Philipp Fürhofer: The Truths Behind” is on view at Galerie Judin, Berlin, through June 11, 2022.


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