Alex Spremberg was born in 1950 in Hamburg, Germany. He studied fine art at the Hochschule für bildende Künste in Hamburg from 1972 – 1978 and moved to Perth in 1982. He has lectured in various Universities and art-schools for 24 years while maintaining a regular exhibition schedule. In 2017 he received his PhD. in Philosophy from Curtin University.
Spremberg works in the context of an inquiry into the boundaries of painting. His work is inspired by everyday life. The ordinary objects that we handle daily often provide the raw materials for his work. From matchboxes, cardboard packaging to vinyl records and their covers, as well as newsprint, teabags and shopping trolleys – these materials have been altered and incorporated into his practice. The processes that he devises for these objects emphasise their materiality and make the passage of time tangible. Spremberg uses these items to investigate consumer culture’s economic rationalism while exploring the idiosyncrasies of human perception within the context of non-objective art practice.
The artist’s work was recently featured in the Here & Now exhibition at the Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery where he showed an installation of 120 painted spinning vinyl records. In 2016 he showed an installation of 360 paintings on pre-owned record covers for the In Focus series at the Art Gallery of WA and the John Curtin Gallery. He had a solo exhibition, Wrong Angles, at the Perth Institute of Contemporary Art, (2011); a survey exhibition at the Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery, University of Western Australia in 1994, Painting 1976 – 1994; as well as numerous solo shows at Galerie Düsseldorf, Perth, and Karen Woodbury Gallery, Melbourne. Spremberg has also participated in numerous group exhibitions, both locally and abroad, including at Paris Concrete, France (2012), Fabrikculture, Hegenheim, France (2012); at Galerie Stella A, Berlin, Germany (2010, 2009, 2007, 2003); at Galerie Katharina Krohn, Basel, Switzerland, (2008, 2007); at the Regionale, Kunsthaus L6, Freiburg, Germany, (2006); at Galerie Beeld & Ambeeld, The Netherlands, (2004); and at the Art Gallery of Western Australia, Perth (2003, 2012, 2016).
Spremberg has been the winner of the prestigious BankWest Contemporary Art Prize (2004); the Artitude Prize, Telethon Speech + Hearing (2005) and the People’s Choice Award, BankWest Contemporary Art Prize (2002). Among many other awards, he has also received several grants, including a six-month residency in Basel, Switzerland, awarded by the International Artists Exchange Program (2006) and a Creative Development Fellowship Grant from ArtsWA in 2007.
The work of Alex Spremberg is represented in many prominent public and private collections across the country, including the National Gallery of Australia; the National Gallery of Victoria; the Art Gallery of Western Australia; the Art Gallery of South Australia; the University of Western Australia; Curtin University; Edith Cowan University; Murdoch University; Artbank; BankWest, Perth; Wesfarmers, Perth; the Holmes a Court Collection, Perth, and Daimler Chrysler Contemporary, Berlin. His work is represented by the Art Collective of WA.