Friedrich Kunath utilizes a personal style of romantic conceptualism, layering poetic phrases with poignant, often melancholic imagery. The work embraces comedy and pathos, evoking universal feelings of love, hope, longing, and despair. Kunath’s personal journey from Germany to Los Angeles plays a key role in his work, incorporating German Romanticism and western popular culture, with still life, cartoon imagery, commercial illustration, nature photography and lyrical references.
The artist studied at the Braunschweig University of Arts, Braunschweig, Germany, and now lives and works in Los Angeles, CA.
The first major monograph devoted to Kunath’s life and work was published in 2018 by Rizzoli Electa, featuring contributions by James Elkins, James Frey, Ariana Reines, and John McEnroe.
Kunath has been the subject of numerous solo exhibitions including a Table For Two For One, Travesía Cuatro, Madrid, Spain; Coming Home Was As Beautiful As Going Away, KINDL, Berlin, Germany (2023); There Must Be A Spanish Word For This Feeling, CAC, Málaga, Spain (2023); Repair is the Dream of a Broken Thing pt. 1 & pt. 2, 313 Art Project, Seoul, South Korea (2022); Life is Short and Days are Long, AVLSKARL, Copenhagen, Denmark (2021); The Things I Notice Now, Travesia Cuatro Mexico City (2021); All Your Fears Trapped Inside, JTT, New York, USA (2019); Where is the Madness that You Promised Me, Tim van Laere Gallery, Antwerp, Belgium (2018); Juckreiz, Sammlung Philara, Düsseldorf, Germany (2016); A Plan to Follow Summer Around the World, Centre d’art Contemporain d’Ivry – le Crédac, Ivry-sur-Seine, France (2014); Raymond Moody’s Blues, Modern Art Oxford, Oxford, UK (2013); Your Life is Not for You, Sprengel Museum, Hannover, Germany (2012); Lonely Are the Free, Schinkel Pavillon, Berlin, Germany (2011); Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, CA (2010); Kunstsaele, Berlin, Germany (2010); 7 x 14, Staatliche Kunsthalle Baden-Baden, Germany (2009); and Home Wasn’t Built in a Day, Kunstverein Hannover, Germany (2009).
His work has been featured in some group exhibitions such as Growing Out? Growing up? Contemporary Art Collecting in the Baltics, Zuzeum Art Center, Riga, Latvia (2022); Abrasive Paradise, Kunsthal KAdE, Netherlands (2022); Ariana Papademtropoulos. The Emerald Tablet, Jeffrey Deitch, Los Angeles, USA (2021); 5,471 Miles, Blum & Poe, Los Angeles, USA (2020); Alien Escape, 303 Gallery, New York, USA; ‘Artists à la one: Togeth’Her’, Monnaie de Paris, France;Weltschmerz, Kinman Gallery, London, Uk (2017); Fabriques du Sublime, Gallery Noisy-le-Sec, France (2005).
His work is also featured in prominent public and private collections such as the Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh, PA; Centre Pompidou, Paris, France; DESTE Foundation for Contemporary Art, Athens, Greece; Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, CA; Hessel Museum of Art, Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, NY; Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles, CA; Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, CA; Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego, CA; Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY; Pinault Collection, Paris, France; and the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, MN, among many more.
The artist lives and works in Los Angeles, USA.