Kata Unger

Kata Unger is a German Postwar & Contemporary artist, born in 1961 in Berlin, Germany. Combining different art histories and visual languages, the Berlin-based artist's work oscillates between contemporary Dada and timeless rebellion.

Kata Unger's iconography draws from art (history) as well as popular culture and the media world. In particular, the complex, mostly large-format tapestries woven from wool are poetic, yet critical reflections of reality that create their own fantastic worlds and are characterized by their sensual form and materiality.


"Before I start on a work (tapestry), I carry out research.

A working group develops which consists of a number of drawings, pictures and texts which relate directly to the theme of the woven work. Some of these gathered symbols, codes, pictorial ideas are used in the weaving process, the rest are rejected as irrelevant.

The aim is not to achieve a pictorial lineup of fantastical association chains, but to retain to what has been seen and felt when capturing and composing the picture and check it for validity.

I work without a one-to-one cardboard draft so that I can move freely in this medium, which can be pretty rigid. Being able to react to chance or errors is important for the work. I often have no idea initially how the picture as a whole will look, even if I have rough composition sketches. I always see only a part of the tapestry, similar to a Cadavre Exquis, except of course I do know what I have woven already. Unlike painting, where corrections are made on the surface, I can only react to what has already happened, and anything I have already woven is never unpicked. Thus my tapestries can only be corrected if I change the composition graphically over and over as required after something has been woven.

Binary structures, patterns and sequences determine formal elements of the picture."