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Sebastian Merk was born 1996 in Bad Homburg, Germany and currently lives and works in Göttingen.
Like a musician or composer, Sebastian’s work is concerned primarily with the expression of intense emotion. Composing with an explosive use of colour, his dynamic abstract canvases are both contemplations on the idea of freedom and a fervent response to life’s stories and experiences.
Sebastian works primarily in acrylic, acrylic-inks and blacklight UV-reactive paints, using palette knives, brushes and his own hands. Switching between visible and UV light, his work reveals unseen worlds beyond the realm of everyday perception. Combining the Impressionists’ concern for light, the Surrealists’ fascination for dream worlds and the Abstract Expressionists’ exploration of emotion, he describes his paintings as worlds in and of themselves. Each “painting world” is constructed over time from layer upon layer of abstracted gestural marks, taking particular care to preserve contrast and luminosity. He is interested in the connections and correspondences within these worlds and how the formal characteristics of each work – the fissures and passages that form within the paintings and the experience of looking itself – might allow a momentary retreat from daily life.
In 2018 Sebastian presented his breakthrough solo exhibition at the Moxy, Frankfurt and has since been included in numerous group shows and art fairs throughout Europe and the U.S., including The Era of Change, Visionary Projects, New York (2021); Arte Wiesbaden (2020); Lass Ma Cornern, Heliumcowboy Artspace, Hamburg (2019); Timeless Impact, Grace Denker Gallery, Hamburg (2019); Art Market, Frankfurt (2019); and Frühlingserwachen, Kun:st Quartier, Leonberg (2019). His work is represented in private collections in the USA, England, Hong Kong, France, Dubai, Finland, Germany and Italy.