Frank Badur

© Foto: Inge Zimmermann 2004

Frank Badur’s pictures require the viewer to surrender to the beauty of simplicity and the awareness that the subtlest differences in colour, material and light can create an infinite variety of nuances. They also enable an acute perception of space within two-dimensional panel painting. Badur’s intensive study of Asian philosophy and culture, paired with the internalisation of atmospheric experiences of nature and formal references to American colour field painting, unconsciously flow into and transform his works.

The colours are not used as pictorial components but should be seen as shades of light and dark. Badur expands on Goethe’s idea that “colours are acts of light”: “Acting complicitly, so to speak, I intentionally create paintings with the physical substance of colour, which successively reveal their differentiated richness of colour to the attentive viewer through the most varied and changing light situations. In the process, light and shadow define the characteristic style of the painted colour and the contrast between haptic surfaces and flat, homogeneous fields, while visibly indicating the direction of the colour application. Glossy colour substance reflects the colour, while matt pigments absorb it. It illuminates painted layers and penetrates transparent glazes. I am constantly faced with the fact that viewers do not approach my painting just with their eyes but instead seek to understand and discern it through them, thereby violating the colour substance, the colour body, and leaving behind a damaged image. Although the material substance of my colour painting is not my topic, it is indispensable for the degree of saturation of each painted colour field, for the specific colour character that is to be developed – and thus, ultimately, it is one of the decisive factors in the immaterial quality of a painting.”1

Anke Hervol


1 Frank Badur in: Rolf Wedewer (ed.), Vom Schweigen der Bilder: Frank Badur / Silence in Art: Frank Badur, Nuremberg, 1998, p. 96.


In the exhibition:

Weiß neben Weiß, 1985
Oil on canvas
150 × 253 cm
Berlinische Galerie – Landesmuseum für Moderne Kunst, Fotografie und Architektur


Additional information about the artist