Marina Schulze

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Marina Schulze (* 1973 in Delmenhorst) is a German visual artist.


She grew up in rural Ganderkesee[1] in the Oldenburg region. From 1991 to 1994 she completed an apprenticeship as a display designer. Subsequently, she studied fine arts at the Ottersberg University of the Arts from 1996 to 1998, at the Bremen University of the Arts from 1999 to 2004 under Stefan Kürten and Katharina Grosse, and in 2003 as part of a study visit to the University of the Arts in Bremen[2] and in 2003 during a study visit at the Art Academy of Iceland (Listaháskóli Íslands) in Reykjavík. From 2004 until her graduation in 2005 she was a master student of Karin Kneffel at the Hochschule für Künste Bremen.[3]

After a working residency in New York in 2006,[3] followed by various residency fellowships, she held a substitute professorship at the Hochschule für Künste in the social Ottersberg from 2017 to 2018.[4] Schulze is a member of the artists’ association Bremen, GEDOK.[5] In 2019, she was a jury member of the Willi Oltmanns Prize.[6] She lives and works with her family in the Falkenburg district of Ganderkesee and in Bremen, where she has a studio in Neustadt.[2] Artists who are particularly significant to Schulze include the Swiss Alberto Giacometti, whose portraiture particularly impressed her before her studies, and the backgrounds and forms in the abstract painting of Charline von Heyl.[7]


Marina Schulze photographs her pictorial motifs and then paints them on large-format canvases. For the panoramic pictures of several meters in size and width[8] she first works in front of the painting, later on on a mobile frame with which she can move over the lying canvas in order to paint. On top of the basic layer of acrylic paint she applies more and more layers.[7] Schulze refrains from using descriptive titles in her paintings in order to let the viewer develop his or her own associations.[1]

She often enlarges sections of images showing details of surfaces to many times their normal size, so that the structures depicted in her images no longer show any reference to the original object. The alienation is created by the choice of image detail and the sometimes strong zooming in. “Her pictures are often so large that one is in danger of losing the overview and the painting tips over into the non-representational, as it were. At the same time, she is characterized by an almost astonishing photorealism.”[9] She works in series. She often varies the different themes.[10] Light, water, clouds, skin and hair are recurring elements.[7] In her pictures of skin and hair, she does not create images of “purely aestheticized body parts”. “Rather, the claim of a relentlessly unembellished mode of representation that reveals every flaw and every detail, no matter how small, characterizes her works”.[11]

Since 2007, her “space paintings” have been concerned with the play of perspectives, creating optical illusions. In Iceland, she painted the original landscape before the flooding as a monumental mural on a dam wall. “Based on this initial inspiration, her spatial works have an installative character, even though they are actually painted.”[1] In a reversal of the trompe-l’œil technique, she paints objects, furniture or spatial elements in such a way that they disappear into the room, such as a bench in the Städtische Galerie Delmenhorst in 2008, which visually merges with the parquet floor surrounding it, a column in the Städtische Galerie Bremen in 2009, which she paints in such a way that it becomes almost invisible to the viewer, or a room corner in 2009, which, when approached, turns out to be a wall corner projecting into the room.[1][10] “Objects in the room, a cube, a column, a bench or a movable wall are painted on their visible front side in such a way that, from a certain point, they deceptively reproduce as painting the section of the room behind them, which they conceal as things”.[12]

Alongside this, in 2011 she began her “light paintings”, for which she projects light patterns, grids or organic structures such as mushroom slats[1] on naked bodies and faces, photographs them and then paints them on canvas.[7]

Scholarships and prizes

  • 2011: one-year, location-independent working scholarship of the Stiftung Kunstfonds in the amount of 16,000 euros
  • 2009: 2nd place at the 1st Nordseekunstpreis Spiekeroog on the theme “Identity”, Galerie- und Künstlerhaus Spiekeroog, combined with a working scholarship on Spiekeroog in the amount of 6,000 euros[13]
  • 2008: 2nd place, Art in Construction Competition of the Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Consumer Protection, Berlin
  • 2007: Travel grant of the German Academic Exchange Service for graduate students in Iceland; residency grant of the Association of Icelandic Visual Artists (SÍM) in Korpúlfsstaðir near Reykjavík
  • 2006: Residence Scholarship Berlin, Senator for Culture of the Senate of the Free Hanseatic City of Bremen
  • 2004 to 2005: living and working scholarship of the municipality of Stuhr in the artists’ residence Stuhr-Heiligenrode
  • 2001 to 2005: Scholarship from the Cusanuswerk, Bonn
  • 2001: 1st prize of the Nordwestkunst 2001, Kunsthalle Wilhelmshaven[3][4][5]

Exhibitions (selection)


  • shallow depth. Syker Vorwerk – Center for Contemporary Art, Syke


  • ANIMAL TURN Female artists on the theme of animals. Syker Vorwerk – Center for Contemporary Art, Syke


  • Too close to reality. Galerie Noah at the Glaspalast Augsburg (with Felix Rehfeld)[14]
  • Crossover. Illusion and Reality. Stadtmuseum Oldenburg (with Helmut Lindemann)[8]


  • Appearances. Falkenberg Gallery, Hanover[15]


  • Looking from near to far. Schönebeck Castle Museum of Local History, Bremen (EZ)[2]


  • External influences. Kunstverein Zweistromkunst, Jork (EZ)
  • Reflets dans léau – Reflections in water. Galerie Rue Sans Fraise, Paris, France / Kunsthalle Wilhelmshaven / Braun-Falco Gallery, Munich


  • Karin Kneffel and master students. Municipal Gallery Eichenmüllerhaus, Lemgo
  • ART UP YOUR LIFE. Bremerhaven Art Museum
  • MALcollection Ger van Dam. Drents Museum, Assen
  • No depth without surface. Gallery at the Künstlerhaus Göttingen (EZ)


  • Head and Shoulders. Municipal Gallery Delmenhorst[16]
  • It’sme_My mirrored self. Palais Rastede


  • [res-i-dence] – Young Art from Lower Saxony. Syker Vorwerk – Center for Contemporary Art, Syke[17]
  • Fugitive. Galerie Beim Steinernen Kreuz, Bremen (with Norbert Bauer)
  • Off to the corner! Municipal Gallery Delmenhorst
  • Highlights. Cuxhaven Art Association


  • Blow up. Kniphausen Castle Foundation, Wilhelmshaven (EZ)[10][12]
  • Cast off!, 85th Autumn Exhibition of Artists from Lower Saxony, Kunstverein Hannover
  • North. Castle Hall State Museum of Art and Cultural History Oldenburg[18]


  • Anatomy of Condition. Mältinranta Artcenter, Tampere, Finland (with Heini Matveinen)
  • Anatomy of the other. Gallery Titanik, Turku, Finland (with Heini Matveinen)
  • Beautiful. Municipal Gallery Karlsruhe


  • Images of Women – 15 international women artists. Art Gallery Lingen
  • Sweet Dreams. Municipal Gallery Delmenhorst
  • 2007:
  • Look at it this way. Kunstfoyer am Langenweg, Oldenburg (EZ)


  • Good calves. Cuxhaven Art Association (EZ)[11]
  • corpus delicti. Psychoanalytic Institute at Haus Meyer, Bremen (with Marikke Heinz-Hoek)
  • Two-gether 6th Bremen Representation in Brussels, Belgium (with Norbert Bauer)
  • Dear Friedrich. KasselerKunstVerein
  • sighted. Municipal Gallery Bremen
  • Art from Bremen in Worpswede. Collection Heinz Dodenhof, Roselius Museum, Great Art Show Worpswede
  • Salon Salder – News from Studios in Lower Saxony. Salder Castle Municipal Museum, Salzgitter


  • Beneath the surface. Künstlerstätte Stuhr-Heiligenrode, Stuhr (EZ)
  • The absence of the burning poodles. Municipal Gallery Bremen


  • Passport. Gallery of the University of the Arts Bremen (with Christian Helwing)
  • Sample skin. Gallery 149 of the Bremerhaven Initiative for Culture (EZ)


  • There you meet me – Hittù mid par. Gallery Nema Hwad, Reykjavík, Iceland (with Claudia Christoffel)


  • Blattanbeter. galeriefürzeitgenössischekunst, Hamburg / Kunsthalle Wilhelmshaven (with Christine Schulz and Diego Castro)


  • Northwest Art. Kunsthalle Wilhelmshaven / Pasinger Fabrik, Munich
  • Tri Top. Municipal Gallery Bremen


  • Young West 99th Recklinghausen Art Gallery[3][19]

Publications (selection)

  • Crossover. Illusion and Reality. Marina Schulze – Helmut Lindemann. Sabine Isensee (ed.), publication of the Stadtmuseum Oldenburg, vol. 85, 2018, ISBN 978-3-7308-1480-2, exhibition catalogue
  • No depth without surface. Marina Schulze. Künstlerhaus Göttingen (ed.), Kerber Bielefeld, Berlin 2014, ISBN 978-3-86678-961-6, exhibition catalogue
  • Blow Up. Marina Schulze. Stiftung Burg Kniphausen (ed.), Galerie Epikur, Wuppertal 2010, ISBN 978-3-925489-85-3, exhibition catalogue
  • Good calves. Marina Schulze. Cuxhavener Kunstverein (ed.), Cuxhaven 2006, exhibition catalogue

Web links

Individual references

  1. a b c d e Esther Nöggerath: A look that gets under your skin. In: Weser-Kurier, 21 September 2017. Retrieved 22 April 2020
  2. a b c Claus Hock: After reading:Newspaper please turn over. In: Nordwest Zeitung online, 15 October 2016. Retrieved 22 April 2020
  3. a b c d Künstlerhaus Bremen Biography Marina Schulze. Retrieved October 1 2019
  4. a b Gallery Noah Biography Marina Schulze. Retrieved October 12, 2019
  5. a b Association of Women Artists Bremen: Members – Marina Schulze. Retrieved 19 January 2020
  6. Jacqueline Schultz: Works like voyages of discovery. In: Weser-Kurier from April 8, 2019. retrieved on April 22, 2020
  7. a b c d Ilka Langkowski Irritating structures. In: from February 28, 2019. retrieved on April 22, 2020
  8. a b Reinhard Tschapke The one with the special look. In: Nordwest Zeitung online September 7, 2018. retrieved on October 12, 2019
  9. Daniel Spanke: Wicked realism. In: Freshness Center. Graduate Catalogue University of the Arts Bremen, Bremen 2004, page 18-19
  10. a b c Heiner Schepers: Blow up. In: Blow up. Marina Schulze. Exhibition catalogue, Kniphausen Castle Foundation, Wilhelmshaven 2010
  11. a b Stefanie Böttcher: Skin for skin. In: Good calves. Exhibition catalogue, Cuxhavener Kunstverein, Bremen 2006, pp. 5-9
  12. a b Roland Meyer: Behind the Picture.On Marina Schulze’s Spatial Images. In: Blow up. Marina Schulze. Exhibition catalogue, Kniphausen Castle Foundation, Wilhelmshaven 2010
  13. Kerstin Kempermann Artist looks beneath the surface. In: Nordwest Zeitung online December 12, 2008. retrieved on October 12, 2019
  14. Manfred Engelhardt: Felix Rehfeld and Marina Schulze at Galerie Noah. In: Augsburger Allgemeine of 18 November 2018. Retrieved 22 April 2020
  15. Double exhibition “Erscheinungsbilder” and “Flausch”. In: Hannoversche Allgemeine from 20 August 2017. Retrieved 22 April 2020
  16. Andreas D. Becker: Head art from our own depots. In: Weser-Kurier, 14 December 2013. Retrieved 22 April 2020
  17. Annett Reckert: Marina Schulze. In: (res.i.dence) Young Art from Lower Saxony. Exhibition catalogue, Nicole Giese for the charitable foundation KSK Syke and the Syker Vorwerk (ed.), Kerber Verlag, Bielefeld/Berlin 2012, ISBN 978-3-86678-762-9, p. 46
  18. Rainer Beßling: Meeting point of different spaces. In: “IM NORDEN” 2010, exhibition catalogue, Kunstsammlung IM NORDEN der Landessparkasse zu Oldenburg, 2010
  19. Gallery epicure Biography Marina Schulze. Retrieved 19 January 2020