Thomas Helbig (born 1967 in Rosenheim, Germany) is an artist based in Berlin. Helbig attended the Royal Academy of Fine Arts, Munich and Goldsmiths, University of London, from 1989-1996. Helbig’s paintings, abstracted and gestural, give a hint or an impression of something familiar, yet they remain enigmatic and abstruse. With a dramatic palette, Helbig alludes to the unwieldy force of nature and recalls some of Caspar David Friedrich’s more ominous paintings that anticipate a sense of foreboding and perhaps something greater than we, as humans, are. Artists like Friedrich and Rothko have been influential to Helbig as he looks to explore spirituality through his work and address that which is beyond our control. “We do not know what powers and violent forces determine us. However, in the work of Thomas Helbig the psychic energies that govern us find their form, their precise and their authentic expression,” – Berthold Reiss. For his sculptures, Helbig’s studio is a laboratory of invention where discarded ephemera of daily life is broken and reassembled to create totems of fictional power. Searching flea markets and the like, the artist finds figurines and discarded lawn ornaments such as Greek nudes, gnomes, animals and other intriguing objects that are often fragmented, contorted and reassembled into biomorphic abstractions.
Helbig has shown his work in many exhibitions including at Oldenburger Kunstverein, at the ICA in London and at Maschenmode in Berlin. He has also shown at galleries and museums such as Museum Abteiberg in Mönchengladbach, Danel Hug Gallery in Los Angeles and The Approach in London.