top of page

CV of Petra Mattes

Petra Mattes

Byron Coleman, critic of Andy Warhol, wrote about Petra Mattes in Gallery&Studio, New York:

If the paintings of the widely exhibited and collected German artist Petra Mattes are any indication, they may be a new species of abstraction brewing in the land of NeoExpressionism. Either that, or Mattes´s work is more unique than it struck us initially, on viewing her paintings in the 2007 year-round salon exhibtion at Montserrat Gallery, 547 West 27th Street, in Chelsea. One of the most innovative things about Mattes´s paintings is how successfully she synthesizes seemingly disparate tendencies. For while the general thrust of her compositions is somewhat minimalist, often with overall elements dispersed over generally monochromatic color fields, her vigorous paint handling results in a wide variety of subtle visual incident. Indeed, one cannot recall having recently encountered another painter who merges geometry and gesture quite so compellingly. Thus, on closer viewing one can´t help arriving at the conclusion that Mattes´s Expressionist heritage may be more deeply ingrained that one might have thought. This seems especially evident in her 2002 work entitled „N.Y.C.“, a diptych consisting of two tall, narrow adjoining canvases that inescapably evoke the Twin Towers of the world Trade Center, destroyed in the terrorist attack of a year earlier. The surfaces of both panels come alive with layered hues applied in the textual scumbling technique at which Mattes excels. In contrast to the variegated, scored and scratched hues that enliven most of the surface, with brilliant yellows bleeding through deeper, darker earth colors, the bottom of the left hand panel is covered by a more or less solid area of fiery red. This panel is also somewhat narrower that the one on the right, in which the colors are more homogenous and smoothly blended, creating a contrasting sens of density and weight to counterbalance the chromatic brilliance of its counterpart. For all thier coloristic and textural sumptuousness, however, the two adjoining panels of this work project a somber mood, in keeping with the timbre of the terrible event to which they so powerfully allude. Without being in the least bit obvious or mawkish, „N.Y.C.“ , comes across as an affecting tribute to a stricken city, stately and moving, possesed of a quiet dignity that hints at the monumental. Much of its power , as in other works by Mattes, lies in the artist gift of understatement, even as she expresses a remarkable range of emotions in an abstract context. Along with the color, texture plays a vital part in her visual vocabulary, as seen in another ( untitled) work at Montserrat Gallery, in which she achives a tactile surface with oil, crushed stones, and acrylic on canvas. She obviously likes to explore the expressive and poetic qualities of texture, as well as its purely physical attributes, to seduce the viewer on the different levels simultaneously. Yet the most notable aspect of her art is its formal exquisiteness, which comes across whether she is creating a composition based on geometric forms or freely indulging her gift for pure gesture. For Petra Mattes possesses an unusually broad visual vocabulary for an abstract artist, ranging from austere linear compositions, to densely saturated surfaces animated by a varity of strokes, marks and drips. Yet that her paintings are always readily identifiable seems to prove the truth of an old adage: „style is charcter“.


  • STRICOFF Gallery 564 W 25 th Street , New York, NY, 10001 by ARTBOX Project, Switzerland , March 2018

  • Biennale of Nations- in Venice , 16 th to 19 th March 2018
    in Scuola Grande di Santa Maria della Misericordia curated by Francesco Saverio Russo, Salvatore Russo, Sandro Serradifalco

  • ART EXPO New York- 19 th to 22 th April 2018
    Pier 94 , Manhattan
    curated by Rosi Raneri, coronari 111 Art Gallery

  • upcoming show: "Segnalati " in Rom, Velli Palace, 5 - 8 July 2018International Giulio Cesare Prize, 7 July , Velli Palace, Rom


  • 2017 Rezension von Dott.Salvatore Russo, Rom, Herausgeber von ART International Contemporary Magazine

  • Alchemic Body, in Jorge Jurado Gallery, Bogota, Kolumbien, vom 01. November bis 30. Novmeber 2017, curator Arch. Luca Curci ,  IT´s LIQUID GROUP

  • Venice International Art Festival - Anima Mundi - during the 57 th Venice Art Biennale 2107 participation in - Elements - from shape to space - in Misericordia Archives , Venedig , vom  09. Mai bis 09. Juli 2017

  • BIENNALE D`ARTE 2017, Pesciera del Garda,
    31.03. 2017 - 03.04.2017

    Mostra internazionale dárte contemporanea, Brügge - Rom 
    Brügge, Out Sint-Jan Museum, from 06. - 15 Oktober 2017
    Rom, Galleria Il Borgo , from 02. - 08. Dezember 2017
    22-28 April 2017 (Vernissage 22. April 18:00)




  • "…" Kulturnacht Rottenburg a. N., 18. April 2015


  • "atomic time balls" Installation für die Kulturnacht Rottenburg a.N., 13. April 2013

  • artists for freedom 2013 Gemeinschaftsausstellung in Ulm, April 2013

  • ARTraumBERLIN 44/88 Gemeinschaftsausstellung, Mai 2013

  • "so far so close" Gemeinschaftsausstellung in Mailand, Juli 2013


  • Cultural contact I, Venezia-Montreal a/r, 01. - 15. March 2012 in Venedig

  • Cultural contact V. Back to you, Santa Marinella (RM), August 2012


  • "Meeting in Brooklyn/ New York" - GaleriaZero, New York, 07. - 20. Sept. 2011

  • "Art et Automne II" - GaleriaZero, Paris, 21. - 27. Oktober 2011


  • Inclusion in the prestigious list: - Who's Who in Visual Art - (100 Artists in Painting, Graphic Arts, Digital Arts, Sculpture. Vol. 2010-2011)

  • Art Domain Whois Publisher, Leipzig - Book available at amazon.

  • Who is Who der europäischen Frauen

  • Certificate of Excellence - Palm Art Award 2010


  • Rottenburger Kulturnacht 2009

  • visual echoes, 03-20 July 2009 in Beijing

  • Uptake in the directory: "Who is Who in der Bundesrepublik Deutschland, 15. Ausgabe" in September 2009.

  • Confronti.Comparisons in Orvieto Italy


  • Contemporary Beijing", 14 - 24 March 2008 at the "Pickled Art Centre" in Beijing

  • "sense and lines" 16.05.-31.05.2008 in GaleriaZero in Barcelona

  • Kunstpfad - Versuchte Annäherung -, Petra Mattes in Rottenburg-Tübingen


  • Rottenburger Kulturnacht 2007

  • “les16anges” Gallery in Paris, France, Sep. – Oct. 2007

  • exhibition in Shanghai, China in May 2007 in cooperation with the “Galeriazero” Gallery from Barcelona, Spain,

  • “Biennale Internationale Dell’ Arte Contemporanea” in Florence, Italy, December 1 – 9, 2007


  • Galerie Classic-Art-House, Brüssel 01.-31.März

  • Peripherie Suedhaus Gallery, Tübingen in May 2006

  • Museum of Industry in Spaichingen, 31 September – 30 October 2006



  • RED land art interurban panel project between Rottenburg and Tuebingen

  • permanent exhibition at the Montserrat Gallery, New York, Chelsea, U.S.A.

  • 3rd Official Art Expo, Caraguatatuba, Saõ Paulo, Brazil

  • Classic-Art-House Gallery in Brussels, Belgium, from 1 March – 31 March 2006


  • exhibition “Castle Gallery” in Weimar, Germany, during all-night-open museums’ night

  • participation in the International Art Competition in the city of Caceres, Spain, during the city’s application phase to become the European Capital of Culture in 2016

  • exhibition at the Rottenburg a.N. town hall (Germany)

  • exhibition at the Tuebingen observatory

  • joint exhibition in Spaichingen: Painting and Sculpture


  • exhibition called “Colour Spaces” at the Sonnenbuehl-Undingen town hall, Germany


  • exhibition on the occasion of a concert at the Tuebingen Sudhaus



  • action-painting zu Neuer Musik im Clubhaus Tübingen

  • exhibition with New Music at the old Wiehre railway station in Freiburg, Germany



  • exhibition on the occasion of a Tango concert at the Tuebingen Sudhaus



  • studies and exhibition at the free Academy of Art in Metzingen, Germany



  • autodidactic studies, enhanced interest in painting



  • A-level and subsequent studies of economics and jurisprudence in Siegen and Tuebingen, Germany



  • born in Spaichingen, Germany

bottom of page