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ARTWORK_2015-Berlin Concert VIII_TW367

The Message, 2015


No news is good news. This catchphrase has never felt truer than in current times. Fresh news items wash over us with the passing of each and every second. Torsten Warmuth’s work “The Message” takes a close look, not so much at the global news presented by the media but rather at traces of the individual.

He finds the starting material for his work on weathered advertising billboards or pasted-over lamp posts: remains of posters, tattered scraps of advertising; messages with the tear-off telephone numbers of those searching for apartments, offers from attic clearers, protests against gentrification, political calls to oppose the TTIP, or announcements of concerts by underground bands.

Taking up conceptually the collage work in his earlier black and white images Torsten Warmuth photographs these, makes a selection, and choreographs a new aesthetic assemblage within the field of the picture. The visual raw materials are still perceptible only as fragments, as traces of humanity, as things relinquished by life, as what is passed – to some extent unfiltered – from person to person. As distillations, the works emerging in this way embody pictorial impressions of our time.

Nobody Knows You, TW 361-365


Names beside doorbells, faded and peeling away; chapped writing once so carefully placed, the final witnesses to an earlier time. It is deadly quiet in this street, the entrances are bricked up, not a sound can escape; in places where people lived, loved, fought; where children raced down the hill making such a din. Their farewell was yesterday – forwarding address unknown.

Gallery owner and art dealer Dieter Brusberg, whom I held in great esteem, died in Berlin on 28th August 2015, at the age of 80.

Dieter Brusberg was an authority in my eyes, a gallery owner of the old school. He had a fine instinct, and when assessing art he relied upon his own judgement, regardless of the market, hype or commonplace attitudes. As an art dealer, curator and publisher – most recently of a comprehensive monographic work on Bernhard Heisig, which was very close to his heart – he helped to shape the art trade in Germany in a definitive way; first in Cologne, and since the 1980s in Berlin.

Dieter Brusberg accompanied my development as an artist, helping me to sharpen my perspective on my own work and supporting my progress with his criticism and encouragement. I am also indebted to him for the opportunity to participate in the last exhibition he curated, “Berlin am Meer / Berlin by the Sea” shown in Ahrenshoop in 2013/14.

A life lived for the arts has come to a close. I will remember Dieter Brusberg with deep respect and gratitude.


Dieter Brusberg’s obituary in the Tagesspiegel (in German): Zum Tod von Kunsthändler Dieter Brusberg: Galerie und Manege