The paintings of Swedish born South African artist Tom Cullberg are at once familiar and foreign, pensive and playful. Charting territories between seemingly tangible and intangible worlds, the artist presents us with collections of represented objects that explore both fictitious story telling as well as real or recorded histories. These signifiers or symbols, appearing as though from dreams, hover or float over abstract grounds that, like the mechanics of memory appear in a state of flux. With humour and wit his paintings consider processes of association and recognition in the reading of both private and public narratives.
A graduate of the Michaelis School of Fine Art at the University of Cape Town, Cullberg has gone on to present seventeen solo exhibitions in five different countries and his work has been included in curated exhibitions at various prestigious institutions and museums including amongst others Kulturhuset, Stockholm; Goteborgs Konst Museum, Gothenburg; the Johannesburg Art Gallery, Johannesburg and IZIKO South African National Gallery, Cape Town.
Barnard presented Cullberg’s work at the Investec Cape Town Art Fair in 2018 followed by the artist’s first solo show with the gallery entitled Finding New Life in an Old Form. To accompany the exhibition Barnard published a limited edition overview of the artist’s work to date. Later the same year Barnard presented the artist’s paintings at START, Saatchi Gallery, London and AKAA - Also Known As Africa in Paris. Prior to this Cullberg participated in various local and international art fairs including the FNB Joburg Art Fair, Johannesburg (2008-2009 / 2011-2013); and SCOPE, New York (2012). More recently Barnard presented Cullberg's work at the Investec Cape Town Art Fair (2018-2020) and the artist held his second solo exhibition, entitled Record / Play, at Barnard from 3 March - 7 April 2020.
Cullberg's work can be found in the collection of the Swedish Parliament as well as a number of corporate collections including SASOL, Spier and Hollard in South Africa and Nandos in the UK.