Born 1971 in Linz, Austria
Lives and works in Vienna, Austria
Tobias Pils’ suggestive figurations are neither entirely legible nor altogether abstract, but rather create associative worlds of forms that appear as paradoxes that resist a straightforward reading. Out of a reduced palette of varied grey tones Pils creates paintings that vibrate with texture, filled with unexpected depths and infinite tones.
Following intuition and disregarding strict methodology, Pils intuitively pursues his ideas as they evolve during their making. He says of his process: “When I start to paint, I have quite a clear idea of the motive … the goal is to lose the idea through painting.” The viewer is confronted with unexpected iconography and motifs that then seemingly take several directions at once and create compositions of interpretive ambiguity that invite deeper contemplation. His body of work is diverse and complex, however an undefined narrative nevertheless runs through it, appearing as scenes of a cryptic dream. Pils has also worked in large-scale installation, most recently having painted a mural at the École normale supérieure Paris-Saclay in 2020. He has also presented his paintings in large, unfied works, at the Musée Picasso Paris in 2020, as well as at Basel Unlimited in 2016 and Secession, Vienna in 2013.
His work has been shown at various institutions worldwide, such as mumok, Vienna (2021), Pinakothek der Moderne, Munich (2020); Musée Picasso Paris (2020); Kunstmuseum Bonn (2020); Josef Albers Museum Quadrat, Bottrop (2018); Le Consortium, Dijon (2018); Aspen Art Museum (2018); 21er Haus, Vienna (2017); Kunsthalle Krems (2017); Chinati Foundation / John Chamberlain Building, Marfa (2016); National Art Museum of China, Beijing (2010); among others.