Hartmut Austen's inventive and compositionally complex paintings and drawings are typically non-narrative and function as compositions of forms and colour, amalgams of things seen, imagined, or a combination of the actual and notional. His paintings attend to structure and expression while incorporating found imagery that both fixes and obscures images and events in ways that echo our subjective relation to the public flux of images and play on voyeuristic curiosity.
Austen studied painting and drawing with H.J. Diehl at Hochschule der Künste (University of the Arts) in Berlin. His first arrival in the United States was marked by a 1998 group exhibition titled VOID at Unfinished (Brooklyn) and he has since exhibited widely in the United States and Germany, including at Good Weather (Chicago), Terzo Piano (Washington, D.C.), REYES I FINN (Detroit), Atlanta Contemporary, Good Weather (North Little Rock), Waiting Room (Minneapolis), The Bedfellow's Club (Chicago), and The Butcher's Daughter (Detroit). Recent solo shows include Künstliche und Künstlerische lntelligenz at Haus zur Glocke (Steckborn, Switzerland), Aus Analogen Archiven at OnArte (Minusio, Switzerland), and a survey of his work from the past decade at McMullen Museum of Art (Boston). In 2009, Austen was awarded a Kresge Arts in Detroit Fellowship and was the Grant Wood Fellow for Painting and Drawing at the University of Iowa in 2012/13. He is an Associate Professor in Painting at Boston College.