Oto Rimele

Sea, Sky and Ladder


A series of twelve watercolor sheets entitled “Sea, Sky and Ladder”, realized in August 2020, was created as an intimate apotheosis of feelings, reflections on nature and the place of man in this wonderful all-encompassing reality of the Universe.

It is important to be aware that the message through the display of nature allows the viewer to establish contact with the properties of the Universe, which are able to create different and completely new temporalities and construct specific mental spaces. A significant aspect of this type of Rimele’s research is manifested in this cycle in the form of existential necessity, the longing of the individual, and the veil of romantic melancholy. The presence of light scattering through transparent layers of applied paint, traces of water movement and activation of the space of “gaps”, are the basic characteristics of the creative relationship when the artist builds an entity of watercolor reality.

Rimele’s confrontation with the landscape is actually an entry into those dimensions of reality that through the scene – where Heaven and Earth merge in a horizontal line – offer the viewer contemplation, confrontation and also transitions. Rimele’s depicted scenes are dramatic, as the author focuses on depicting moments that lead from the realm of a static and recognizable landscape into a dynamic and intimate experience of the time of Transition and Transition. In his works, he moves from the universal to the individual and vice versa, because our personal entities and decisions are the building blocks of this broadest whole to which we belong. Rimele says, “Our individual actions and thoughts are also always committed to the omnipresence of the Universe. And the Universe (Universe), despite its apparent immobility, is possible, alive and active because of the uniqueness of the individual meanings of individuals, and each of us contributes in some way. And that counts. “

Dr. Marjeta Ciglenečki recognizes artistic sublime communication with the individual as a bridge that gives the viewer an inner insight: “Many of Rimele’s public presentations can be described simply as beautiful, if, of course, we follow Plotinus’ interpretation of Beauty and together observes. “

Oto Rimele is a full professor at the Faculty of Education in Maribor. In addition to painting, he is engaged in graphic design and scenography. He was also involved in music and, along with Zoran Predin, was one of the founders of the new wave rock group Lačni Franz and Laibach, and Sokoli.

A bilingual art monograph entitled “Oto Rimele: Spirituality of material absence” by Dr. Jure Mikuž was published in 2012.

In 2016 and 2017, he participated in a group exhibition in Paris at the Carrousel du Louvre.

The motif of the Ladder and the Transition was presented by the painter in a series of 12 watercolor sheets called Jacob’s Ladder, which was presented to the American public in July 2019 at the DDA Pratt Institute Gallery in Brooklyn, New York.

He has also exhibited in Vienna (Korotan Gallery, 2018), Berlin (Galerie B1, Schönberg) and Maribor (former Minorite Church, 2018).

He is the winner of the highest recognition in the Republic of Slovenia in the field of culture for 2003, the Prešeren Fund Award, for the exhibition “Illuminations” set up in the monastery church in Kostanjevica.






An Examination of Current Trends & Official Practices in Visual Art
Published by CFA Press

Presenting a wide range of media and an even broader variety of styles, we investigate the diversity of practices and perspectives in contemporary art. Although at first glance, juxtaposed works can appear radically different, we have found that a bold, recurring element across all the artists’ approaches, is a kind of 6th sense, an intense sensitivity to observation and detail. Reading the artist’s statement it becomes evident that the drive behind their work is about noticing, whether that refers to an aesthetic observation, a social, political, intellectual or emotional observation.




Contemporary Art Curator Magazine Announces The Launch Of Their Debut Book “100 Artists Of The Future”.

The book contains an amazing selection of works from different artists that will inspire art lovers regardless of their preference. 100 Artists of the Future will also serve as a reference book for curators, gallery owners and collectors to discover talents with the book introducing each artist and presenting their works, consequently presenting a snapshot of the best talent from across the globe.






The Lights and Shadows of the Berliners

The series entitled “Berlin Portraits (1961–89)” is dedicated to those seeking light – especially those who sought freedom in 1961–89 and were thus confronted with their own light and shadow as well as with the bright and dark sides of German reality.






Iz cikla Berlinski portreti (1961–1989)
106 x 8 x 3 cm




Iz cikla Berlinski portreti (1961–1989)
105 x 7 x 3 cm






DDA Gallery
Pratt Institute Brooklyn
New York


In 2019, Oto Rimele painted ten watercolours quite large in size (approx. 800 x 600 mm), in which the predominant motif of the horizon was replaced by the Jacob’s ladder scene. The relation between the earth and the sky changed. All the papers are positioned vertically; the lower part features the earth, which is depicted more or less explicitly, the main part is occupied by ladder rungs floating in the unidentifiable void, and the upper part depicts the sky. Thin droplets of paint fall from the celestial sphere down between the rungs; they can be understood as expressions of infinite emotions and suffering or as glittering rays from the beyond. The application of watercolour paint on the roughly-structured hand-made paper is typical of Oto Rimele’s work. The effect of transparency prevails, but a large part of the paper surface is also left uncovered. The glittering white rungs stand out. Rimele achieved the light radiation effect, which is one of the main areas of his research in fine arts. Parallel to the large watercolour series, the artist created ten small square shaped watercolours (approx. 100 x 100 mm) with the same content. Due to the changed format, the number of rungs is reduced from five or seven to three or four, and the watercolour as a whole is more abstract. The painter coloured the back page of the small watercolours in intense yellow. Owing to the manner in which the watercolours are attached to the wall in the exhibition area, the tiny paintings are surrounded by a gentle yellow shadow – Jacob’s ladder is floating in the gallery.

Both watercolour series can be interpreted in accordance with the story from The First Book of Moses (28, 10–21). The biblical Patriarch Jacob dreamt of a ladder reaching up to the sky with angels ascending and descending on it. At the top of the ladder stood the Lord, who promised to give Jacob the land he fell asleep on and predicted that his generation will expand and that he would never leave this land. When Jacob woke up, he recognized the land where he was sleeping as the house of God and the door to heaven. He turned the stone where he lay his head into an altar. The Jacob’s ladder motif was particularly popular in the Middle Ages when they understood the story as a metaphor for Paradise and the announcement of Jesus Christ’s Ascension. Most older depictions of Jacob’s ladder follow the story from the Old Testament quite faithfully, but sometimes the artists allowed themselves some creative freedom. In Dutch painting, for instance, the ladder is sometimes replaced by light rays or the angels ascend and descend without touching the rungs of the ladder.

Jacob’s ladder has always been understood as a bridge between the earthly life, where our experience resides, and the other life, which remains completely secret except for a few chosen ones who can perceive a certain reflection from the beyond, but this can only happen in certain states, for example, in one’s sleep. In the past, it was significant that the depictions of Jacob’s ladder clearly defined the earth and the sky. However, the modern man also identifies with the undefined top of the ladder, which may get completely lost in dizzy heights. The mysterious power of Jacob’s ladder lies in the message of the biblical metaphor; yet, should we follow the Slovenian philosopher Marko Uršič’s interpretation, art also possesses a cognitive tendency characteristic of scriptures. Oto Rimele marked the bottom centre of the large watercolours with the title (JACOB’S LADDER), the number in the series, the signature and year. All the pencil-made inscriptions are in line with the ladder’s compositional structure. It seems as if the written words also shape themselves into rungs, thus persuading us to think that the artist perceives his mission as a gruelling ascent towards the unknown and the unspeakable, towards the beyond.

Marjeta Ciglenečki







The Miyako Yoshinaga Gallery
New York




Minoriti, Maribor

14.06– 11.09.2018

»Rimele’s paintings convey the impression that in their invisible core there is a focus of shining that disperses the refined and sublime light shadow through the reflective whiteness of the wall into the space.«

Dr. Nataša Smolič



Photo: Valeska Rimele




Photo: Valeska Rimele



Photo: Matej Fišer



Photo: Matej Fišer





25.05 – 25.07. 2018

Oto Rimele’s Anomalies are visual exceptionalities, two-dimensional canvases with a three-dimensional effect, in which we perceive the length, surface and volume at the same time. Through the movement of the observer across the gallery space, Rimele adds the “fourth dimension” – time, which is related to the duration of the observer’s presence. It is only through this kind of co-existence that anomalies are created: the observer defines the subject matter of the works subjectively, and retrospectively. Each of the works thus becomes an anomalous image, a subjective emergence of a visual perspective that is reflected in the gallery space. The image becomes a proper object: it is there, because we see it; it is not there, because we are not there.

Nina Jeza, Artists&Poor’s



Photo: Damjan Švarc



Photo: Damjan Švarc



Photo: Damjan Švarc



Foto 4  KIBLA
Photo: Dijana Božić



K R O Ž N E S V E T L O B E / L E U C H T K R E I S E

P r o s t o r s k o – č a s o v n i a m b i e n t / E i n R a u m – Z e i t – A m b i e n t e


G a l e r i j a K o r o t a n
A l b e r t g a s s e 4 8 , D u n a j

G a l e r i e K o r o t a n
A l b e r t g a s s e 4 8 , 1 0 8 0 W i e n


20.04 – 18.05. 2018

“Če bi želeli razstave Ota Rimeleta doživeti zares celovito, bi morali v razstavišču preživeti vse dneve in ure njihovega trajanja. Rimele je z vztrajnim raziskovanjem razvil postopke slikanja, s pomočjo katerih dosega sevanje barve na stene galerijskega prostora. Intenziteta tega sevanja je odvisna od moči dnevne svetlobe, ki prodira skozi
odprtine v stenah razstavišča, zato so podobe na razstavi vsak trenutek drugačne. Bistvo Rimeletovega ustvarjalnega postopka je spreminjanje materije v barvni odsev, razbremenjen vsega otipljivega.”

dr. Marjeta Ciglenečki

“Würden wir die Ausstellungen von Oto Rimele tatsächlich in ihrer Gesamtheit erleben wollen, müssten wir jeden Tag und jede Stunde ihrer Dauer auf dem Ausstellungsgelände verbringen. Durch fortwährendes Forschen entwickelte Rimele ein einzigartiges Malverfahren, mit dem er Farben an die Wände des Galerieraums strahlen lässt. Die Intensität dieser Strahlung hängt von der Stärke des Tagelichts ab, das durch die Wandöffnungen der Ausstellungsräume eindringt und die ausgestellten Gemälde jeden Moment anders erscheinen lässt.

Die Verwandlung der Materie in eine Farbspiegelung, die von allem Greifbaren befreit ist, stellt die Essenz von Rimeles kreativem Prozess dar.”

Dr. Marjeta Ciglenečki


Live performance at Korotan Gallery




Foto: Matej Fišer




Foto: Matej Fišer




Foto: Matej Fišer




Foto: Matej Fišer




Foto: Matej Fišer












13.05 – 16.06. 2018


Avstrija Ferdinand Penker, Peter Krawagna, Valentin Oman, Gustav Januš, Suse Krawagna, Franco Kappl, Ulrich Plieschnig, Richard Kaplenig, Pepo Pichler, Ernst Gradischnig, Lisa Huber,

Alois Köchl, Gotthard Schatz, Kevin Rausch, Rudi Benétik, Sibylle von Halem, Werner Hofmeister, Helmut Machhammer, Britta Keber, Petar Waldegg, Andres Klimbacher, Karin Rupacher, Ralf Röll, Walter Teschl, Michael Dohr, Richard Klammer, Karl Schüssler, Fritz Unegg,
Gabi Simonitsch, Karl Vouk, Manuel Tschas, Gianni Magnanimi,

Franz Motschnig, Norbert Klavora
Slovenija Dušan Kirbiš, Ivo Prančič, Dare Birsa, Oto Rimele, Luka Popič, Maruša Suštar, Lucija Stramec, Marko Pak, Aleš Sedmak, Štefan Marflak, Jure Markota
Italija Manuela Sedmach, Ivan de Menis, Mario Palli
Slovaška Zuzana Kalinakova



Photo: Valeska Rimele










Artists’ Directory Listing
In The December/January Issue
Of Aesthetica























16.5. – 1.10. 2017


prenova-1-foto-2 Oto Rimele
prostorsko-zvočna instalacija; cca. 220×150 cm



Salon des Beaux Arts

Carrousel du Louvre, Paris

December 6–11, 2016



Photo: Vojko Stiplovšek



Oto Rimele

Lévitation en vert


Spreminjanje letnih časov je mogoče doživljati kot veličasten ritual narave. Podoba, ki nosi naslov Levitacija v zelenem, je nastala na koncu zimskega obdobja in se pojavlja kot slutnja ter napoved pomladi.

Je nekakšno slikarsko pomladno obredje (Igor Stravinski). Je ritual mentalne levitacije (Yves Klein), v katerem se združujeta ustvarjana moč posameznika in sile narave v skupno apoteozo življenja.


Il est possible de vivre les changements des saisons comme un rituel sublime de la nature. L’oeuvre qui porte le nom “Lévitation en Vert” a été réalisée à la fin de la période de l’hiver et apparaît comme la prémonition et l’annonce du printemps.

C’est une sorte de sublimation artistique du printemps (Igor Stravinsky) C’est un rituel de la lévitation mentale (Yves Klein), au cours duquel s’assemblent la force créative de l’individu et  l’hégémonie de la nature guidant vers une commune apothéose de la vie.


The changing of seasons can be experienced as a majestic rite of nature. The painting titled Lévitation en vert was created at the end of winter and represents an anticipation as well as an announcement of spring.

It’s a kind of rite of spring (Igor Stravinsky) in painting. It’s a rite of mental levitation (Yves Klein) that combines the individual’s creative power and the powers of nature into a joint apotheosis of life.




Kresija Gallery

Oto Rimele

A Composition for Five Images, Four Musical Compositions and Silence

May 19 – June 6, 2016

Barbara Savenc

How to capture a thought in a painting?
A thought, spanning through
space and time.

In February 1992 Oto Rimele wrote: “When we speak about a square, we actually think about a circle and when we speak about a circle, we feel a square.”

Two decades later he created Rounded mirror, a composition of seven wooden subframes, over which a canvas with wax coating is stretched, which is painted on the front-facing rectangular sides with white acrylic paint in different shades and thin layers, while on the borders and especially on the side panels stretching diagonally towards the wall in rose red, fluorescent shade. The reflections and shadows form a partially stretched circle around the carriers, in spite of the square shape made by the rod paintings, which depend only on the atmospheric light and not on the directed artificial light.

The other four exhibited images, presented for the first time on this occasion, have an abstract and at the same time deeply symbolic effect. Their enigmatic title consisting of the letter K and serial number, is directing us towards the initial letter of shapes that serve as a basis for all Rimele’s paintings, to the circle and the square. It seems that he want us to figure out on our own, about what we see, or at least what we surmise. (…)

Rimele’s seemingly breezily designed ambient has fused into a sound installation. Via mediation of music the feeling and thought free themselves and buzz, they resound through the following 300 seconds of silence – in the presence of the images, that bring us back to the cycle of human longing for the unspeakable, beyond the visible and understandable, as a path without a final destination. We remain without the final answer, as it would momentarily dissolve the inspiration and the desire for existence, for only the quest for the unfathomable, explaining it in thousands and endless variations of answers, is meaningful and contains beauty.


Photo: Marko Zaplatil



Photo: Marko Zaplatil



Photo: Marko Zaplatil



Photo: Andrej Cvetnič



Photo: Marko Zaplatil



Photo: Tamara Vodopivec



Photo: Branimir Ritonja


Protagonisten der slowenischen Gegenwartskunst 1968–2013

Künstlerhaus Wien 
Karlsplatz 5, Wien
6. Februar – 29. März 2015


Oto Rimele at Künstlerhaus in Vienna









Rimele: Spatial installation at “Art Factory”

Photo: Valeska Rimele


Rimele: Spatial installation at “Art Factory”

Photo: Valeska Rimele


Mörth: Spatial installation at “Art Factory”

Photo: Stojan Kerbler


Manfred Mörth and Oto Rimele

Photo: Stojan Kerbler


Magija umetnosti: Protagonisti slovenske sodobne umetnosti 1968-2013.

2. april – 22. junij 2014



Oto Rimele: OVUM-RO, 2011

(postavitev v Villi Manin, foto: Valeska Rimele)


Oto Rimele: OVUM-RO, 2011

(postavitev v Villi Manin, foto: Damjan Kozole)








foto 1M



www.circulobellasartes.com   ALCALÁ, 42   28014  MADRID   t. 913 605 400   Radio Círculo 100.4 FM



image001 (1)


OTO RIMELE, La luz de la sombra/
OTO RIMELE, The Light of Shadow
Círculo de Bellas Artes de Madrid (CBA),
Calle Alcalá 42, Madrid, Spain
5  February – 30 March 2014
Opening: Wednesday, 5 February 2014 at 20:00
Oto Rimele is one of the leading names of Slovenian contemporary fine arts. In the recent decades he has developed an entirely unique principle of expression that is minimalist, yet it carries complex meanings. His explorations are primarily focused on the laws of colour reflections, and he excels in attractive spatial arrangements for which he has won numerous prestigious awards in Slovenia.
The exhibition jointly prepared by Círculo de Bellas Artes de Madrid (CBA) and UGM | Maribor Art Gallery presents the major works of the past fifteen years which have been combined by the author into a new spatial entity.
Oto Rimele’s individual works always consist of two parts: the first is a material one – a construction carrying the image, while the second part is non-material and is created as its shadow, glow and a coloured reflection. The core of the artist’s exploration, which is supported by precise theory, is a relationship between these so very different starting points. In this research the author uses different forms, types of material and positioning of the art object as well as the possibilities offered by reflections. The spatial installation designed by Oto Rimele especially for the Juane Mordó exhibition space »speaks« of the role of light and shadows. There are many levels of comprehension, ranging from reflection on the essence of a painterly medium and its potential development in the present time to the fundamental ontological issues regarding the creation of the world which is divided into the light and the shadow. Apart from this symbolically powerful premise it is important to observe that the viewer is directly invited by Oto Rimele to primarily experience his works. As is the case with all his installations, the concept of The Light of Shadow exhibition is completely minimalist. In the ambience where at the first glance there is nothing apart from sheer emptiness, whiteness, transparency and reddish reflections, the hidden is gradually revealed. Contrary to our expectations we find for instance that a shadow can be more powerful than its material medium. And this is just the beginning. Isn’t a shadow actually light? What is its origin? Why does it carry such strong red traces? A new magical world that will fascinate the viewer with the installation concept is one of the rare contemporary works of art that require us to pause and reflect. In the process of surprise the audience willing to surrender to curiosity and then to contemplation will be rewarded with a rich poetic experience and a new individual revelation.
Oto Rimele (1962) is a Slovenian painter who lives and works in Maribor, Slovenia. He is a full professor of painting and drawing at the University of Maribor. He also works in graphic and stage design.  He has received a number of awards, the most prominent being those awarded for original spatial installations – one of them was the project located in the former monastery church in Kostanjevica na Krki (Galerija Božidar Jakac) in 2003 – and the highest professional recognition in culture in Slovenia, the Prešeren Fund award, 2004. He has held over 45 independent exhibitions and has participated in over a hundred group exhibitions. He was also a member and a co-founder of the rock group Lačni Franz and a member of Laibach.
An excellent monograph on the work of Oto Rimele Spirituality of Material Absence by Jure Mikuž was published by Galerija Žula in 2012.
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Project partner:
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The project has been financially supported by:
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 Oto Rimele final ad




OTO RIMELE »Image and Shadow«, 2013







platno, les, steklo, barva, pesek, muha

35 x 45 x 35 cm






V preteklosti slikarji niso razstavljali svojih slikarskih del v naravi sami. Bilo je prenevarno izpostaviti slikarsko delo spremembam, ki jih prinaša naravno okolje. Kljub temu, da so nekoč nekateri ustvarjalci delali pod milim nebom (en plain air) in da je bil njihov motiv krajina, bi bilo za ustvarjalca postaviti olje na platnu ali akvarel neposredno v naravno okolje pravzaprav neodgovorno početje, saj so slikarski materiali in z njimi povezana tehnološka narava slikarskega medija v omenjenem smislu v pogojih naravnega prostora obsojeni na propad. Tudi danes je tako.

Zato je bil izziv, kako pripraviti takšno slikarsko podobo, ki bo v idejnem, konceptualnem smislu lahko sobivala v naravnem prostoru pod milim nebom. Izziv v idejnem in tehničnem smislu. Kako torej ohraniti slikarsko podobo in povezati obe naravi v celovitost, kjer se neposredno prekrivata intenca ustvarjalca in intenca narave. Pod milim nebom namreč ustvarjalec ni edini kreator podobe in ne gre brez interakcije z okoljem in bitji, ki jim je narava primarno okolje. Nedvomno je potrebno upoštevati intenco drugega: Narave.

Nastalo je stekleno prizorišče, namenjeno temu, da sprejme dve platni. Vrhnji del je namenjen pogledu gledalca, spodnji del pa gledalcu nudi bolj neposredno komunikacijo z barvo in sporočilom slike. Tako se relacija dveh platen udejanja v diptihu, ki je postavljen v nenavadno lego »zgoraj – spodaj« oziroma »proti nebu – proti zemlji«. In če je lice zgornje podobe vidno in obrnjeno h gledalcu, kdo je tisti, ki bo videl navzdol, k zemlji obrnjeno podobo?

Spodnje platno je nosilec barve. Njeno »barvno lice« reflektira obarvano svetlobo najprej v območje tal. Od tam naprej pa se preko refleksije narave na ogled postavlja tudi človeku. In ta podoba se bo spreminjala – ne samo po legi Sonca in Lune, ki bosta spreminjala dajanje svetlobe, temveč bodo tam tudi drugi: Vlaga in Mravlje, Mraz in druge Žuželke in vsi skupaj bodo neposredno stopali v območje podobe in oblikovali njeno materialno substanco. In tam nekje na začetku tega procesa je tudi plastična Muha, ki jo je izdelal človek.

Oto Rimele 12. september 2013



In der Vergangenheit stellten die Maler ihre Werke nicht in der Natur an sich aus. Es war zu gefährlich, die künstlerischen Werke den Veränderungen, welche die natürliche Umwelt mit sich bringt, auszusetzen. Obwohl einige Künstler einst unter freiem Himmel arbeiteten ( en plain air ), und eine Landschaft als Motiv wählten, wäre es von dem Schöpfer unverantwortlich gewesen, Öl auf Leinwand oder ein Aquarell direkt der natürlichen Umwelt auszusetzen, denn das von den Malern verwendete Material und die mit diesen verbundene technologische Natur der malerischen Medien sind in dem erwähnten Sinne unter den Bedingungen des natürlichen Raums zum Verfall verurteilt. Und das ist auch noch heute so.

Somit bestand die Herausforderung darin, wie eine solche bildliche Darstellung, die in ideeller und konzeptioneller Hinsicht in einer natürlichen Umgebung unter freiem Himmel koexistieren könnte, vorbereitet werden sollte. Eine Aufgabe in ideologischem und technischem Sinn. Wie also das künstlerische Bild erhalten und diese beiden Naturen in einer Ganzheit verbinden, wo sich Zweck und Sinn des Schöpfers mit der Intention der Natur direkt überdecken. Unter freiem Himmel ist der Künstler nicht der einzige Schöpfer des Bildes und es geht nicht ohne Interaktion mit der Umwelt und den Wesen, für welche die Natur die primäre Umwelt ist. Zweifelsfrei muss die Intention des anderen berücksichtigt werden: die der Natur.

Die gläserne Szene ist dazu bestimmt, zwei Leinwände anzunehmen. Der obere Teil ist so konzipiert, um den Betrachter zu respektieren und der untere Teil bietet dem Betrachter eine direkte Kommunikation mit der Farbe und bietet Zugriff auf die Botschaft des Bildes. Somit wird die Beziehung der beiden Gemälde im Diptychon, das in eine ungewöhnliche Position gesetzt ist, realisiert “oben – unten” beziehungsweise ” gen Himmel – zur Erde”. Und wenn die Oberfläche des oberen Bildes sichtbar und dem Betrachter zugewandt ist, wer ist dann derjenige, der nach unten blickt, das zur Erde gewandte Bild?

Die untere Leinwand ist Träger der Farben. Ihr “farbiges Gesicht” spiegelt das farbige Licht zuerst im Bodenbereich wieder. Von da an stellt sich über die Reflexionen der Natur auch der Mensch zur Schau. Und das Bild wird sich ändern – nicht nur nach dem Stand der Sonne und des Mondes, die die Darreichung des Lichts verändern, es gibt auch andere: Feuchtigkeit und Ameisen, Kälte und andere Insekten, und alle gemeinsam treten direkt in einen Bereich des Bildes und schaffen seine materielle Substanz. Und irgendwo, am Anfang dieses Prozesses, dort ist die künstliche Fliege, von Menschen gemacht.

Oto Rimele 12. September 2013

invitation_nonvernis_olinvitation_nonvernis_olVabilo circle