Wieland Payer

‘The Gentleman Explorer’ is a species which has become scarce today. Georg Forster and Alexander von Humboldt were among the first representatives; dauntless explorers, sophisticated intellectuals and artists at the same time. They had the ability to discover new territories and to describe and present them vividly to their contemporaries. They occupied the imagination of entire nations and created ranges of ideas which lasted for decades. Wieland Payer is a revenant of this visionary and adventurous type of human. His brilliant prints and drawings represent remote landscapes with intriguing cultures.

His first expedition led him to the Caucasus Mountains; further journeys disclosed more secluded territory of which the plausibility increases as the work of the young artist is developing. Some of the continents visited by Wieland seem to already have been sighted from afar and drafted by Georg Forster. The artist aims ‘to see and amaze, to observe but primarily to collect and to measure’ as his tutor Uwe Pfeiffer states.

Wieland’s series Bondasca deals with the ‘Zone’ – that mysterious and extraterrestrial area which is swarmed with marvellous artefacts and deadly traps. Arkady and Boris Strugatsky described this landscape in their book Roadside Picnic, and with his movie Stalker Andrei Tarkovsky erected a cinematic memorial in its honour in 1978.

Wieland now transposes the mesmeric motifs of the Russian master director to the Engadin and the Bergell – the setting of the earliest high mountain paintings in Art History by the pre-Romanticist Caspar Wolf (1735-83).

The artist’s synthesis of Science Fiction and Romantic perception isn’t a coincidence: his MA thesis deals with German Romanticism. The atmospheric density and perfection of his Bondasca series refer to Carl Blechen – its metaphysical quality to Caspar David Friedrich. The Romantic irony isn’t missed out either as ‘pioneers’ – preposterous crop creatures which seemingly emanated from psychedelic visions by lunatic illustrators – populate the barren rocky landscape of the Swiss Alps.

Wieland was born in Erfurt in 1981. He studied at the Burg Giebichenstein University of Art and Design Halle, the Accademia di Belle Arti in Rome and at the Royal College of Art, London.


2009 – 2011 MA Fine Art at the Royal College of Art, London, UK

2006 – 2007 Accademia di Belle Arti, Rome, Italy

2002 – 2009 Diploma Fine Art, HKD Burg Giebichenstein, Halle/S., Germany


2014 Talstation, Galerie Rothamel, Frankfurt am Main

2013 What’s he building out there?, Man&Eve, London

2012 Im Hercynischen Wald, Galerie Rothamel, Frankfurt am Main

2011 Bondasca, Galerie Rothamel Erfurt

2009 Diplomausstellung, Galerie im Volkspark, Halle/S.

Treibhaus, Galerie Rothamel, Frankfurt am Main


2014 Ostrale 2014, Dresden

2014 Sommergäste V, Sommergalerie Hofefeld, Frauenstein

2013 Young British 2013, Lloyds Club, London

2013 Summer of Paper, Galerie Biesenbach, Köln

2013 Trail, with Claas Gutsche and Maria Theresia von Thurn und Taxis, Galerie Rothamel, Erfurt

2013 Discernible, Zeitgeist Art Projects, London

2012 Young Masters Art Prize Show 2, Gallery 27, Cork Street, London

2012 Young Masters Art Prize Show 1, Sphinx Fine Art, Kings Road, London

2012 Architektur in der Malerei heute, Galerie Rainer Wehr, Stuttgart

2012 Utopia, Hoxton Art Gallery, London

2012 Potenzial, Galerie Rothamel, Erfurt

2011 Hausbesetzung, Angermuseum, Erfurt

2011 ING Discerning Eye, Mall Galleries, London

2011 The Future can wait, Victoria House, London

2011 Wanderlust, Haggerston Studios, London

2011 From Garden City to Green City, Garden Museum, London

2011 Final Show, Royal College of Art, London

2011 Fokus Junge Kunst, Lindenau Museum, Altenburg

2011 Stadt Land Fluss, Jenaer Kunstverein, Jena

2011 Man Group Drawing Award, Royal College of Art, London

2011 CMYOK, Cafe Gallery, London

2010 Die neue Präzision II, Galerie Rainer Wehr, Stuttgart

2010 Give us four more years, with Michael Wegerer and Henrik Potter, Hockney Gallery, Royal College of Art, London

2010Interim Show, Royal College of Art, London

2010 Everything what you can, I can do better?, Cafe Gallery, London

2010 30 Jahre Galerie Rainer Wehr, Galerie Rainer Wehr, Stuttgart

2010 Blütezeit, Galerie Rothamel, Erfurt

2009 Denken wie der Wald, Kunstraum Syltquelle, Sylt

2009 Diplomausstellung, Galerie im Volkspark, Halle/S.

2009 Malerei und Grafik, with Franziska Peter, Städtische Galerie, Geislingen

2009 Envia Kunstkalender 2010, Galerie Moritzburg Halle/S., Galerie Archiv Massiv, Leipzig, Lindenau Museum, Altenburg, Neue Sächsische Galerie, Chemnitz

2008 Grafisch, Klasse Thomas Rug im LIA, Leipzig

2008 Flügge, Schloss Wallhausen

2008 Payer und Payer, with Peter Payer, GeWerk, Erfurt

2007 Illustrative, Festival für Illustration, Villa Elisabeth, Berlin

2007 Die neue Präzision, Galerie Rainer Wehr, Stuttgart

2007 Kernbeißer, Klasse Thomas Rug in der Galerie der UDK, Berlin

2006 Zeichnen 2006, Galerie Rainer Wehr, Stuttgart

2006 Coming home, Galerie Krönbacken, Erfurt

2006 Burgausstellung, Ständige Vertretung des Landes Sachsen-Anhalt, Brüssel

2005 greater chateau 5000, Halle/S.

2005 Kurzschluss, Gemeinschaftsprojekt der Kunsthochschulen Deutschlands, Stuttgart

2005 Sie stehen vor einer Mehrzweckhalle, Podium für Kunst, Schrammberg


2012 Young Masters Runner-up Prize

2012 Scholarship Sparkasse Mittelthüringen, Erfurt

2011 Tim Mara Purchase Award

2011 The Gordon Luton Award for Fine Art

2010 20:21 Art Fair Award 2010

2010 Scholarship of the DAAD for the UK

2009 Scholarship of the German National Academic Foundation for Great Britain

2008 Scholarship of the German National Academic Foundation

2003 2. Prize, Foundation for Christian Art, Wittenberg


Sparkasse Mittelthüringen, Erfurt

Bundesumweltministerium, Berlin

Stiftung für christliche Kunst, Wittenberg

Klingspor Museum, Offenbach

Angermuseum, Erfurt

Neue Sächsische Galerie, Chemnitz

Royal College of Art, London

Garden Museum, London