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Basic Data

Thomas Bayrle underwent a training as a weaver and graphic designer in the 1950s and founded the publisher ‘Gulliver-Presse’, where he also published art books after his studies. Through his professorship at the Staatliche Hochschule für Bildende Künste, he taught artists like Martin Liebscher.

  • Born: 7 November 1937
  • Place of birth: Berlin
  • Nationality: German
  • Studied at: Werkkunstschule Offenbach, apprenticeship as weaver
  • Teacher: Eberhard Behr
  • Era: Contemporary art
  • Stylistic direction: Pop art


Thomas Bayrle Prices

Artist: Title: Price: Type: Size: Edition: Handsigned: Numbered: Date:
Thomas Bayrle Flying Home 5900 Euro Original print 44.9 x 33.1 in 10 uniques yes yes 10.07.2019
Thomas Bayrle Corporate Identity 490 Euro Original print 23.39 x 33.07 in limited edition of 35 yes yes 10.07.2019



Thomas Bayrle was born in Berlin on 7 November 1937, the son of the painter Alf Bayrle and his wife, an art historian with a doctorate. After his father was called up for military service and was taken prisoner, the family was evacuated to Oberndorf near Geinhausen. In the early 1950s they moved to Frankfurt.

From 1956 to 1958 Bayrle initially trained as a weaver and pattern draughtsman. He then studied graphic arts at the Offenbach Werkkunstschule in Frankfurt am Main under Eberhard Behr, who taught him the techniques of etching and lithography. In 1961 Bayrle and his fellow student and graphic artist Bernhard Jäger founded the Gulliver-Presse, a lithography workshop that existed until 1966. Bayrle also worked as a printer and publisher of artists' books. In 1964 he took part in documenta III for the first time.

From 1975 Bayrle followed his appointment as professor at the Städelschule in Frankfurt am Main. Here he taught artists such as Marko Lehanka, Tobias Rehberger, Kerstin Jeckeln and Martin Liebscher. After taking part in documenta 6, he was a visiting professor at Tohoku University in Japan in the mid-1990s. His participation in the Venice Biennale followed in 2003 and 2009, as well as his renewed participation in documenta in 2012.

The artist was interested in pictorial reproduction techniques from an early age. In particular, the aesthetic element and principle of the serial became formative for Bayrle's art. Since the 1960s, the painter has been developing large paintings made of structural grids composed of many identical elements. Not only Pop Art stylistic devices can be found in his works, but also neo-Dadaist tendencies. He thematises capitalism and the de-individualisation of man in a mass. In addition, Bayrle creates motorised picture boxes and works with the reproduction of graphic pictograms. He was one of the first artists in Germany to produce computer-generated and animated art. Today Thomas Bayrle lives and works in Frankfurt am Main and is married to the artist Helke Bayrle.



  • 19.09.21 - 28.11.21 Frequently the woods are pink - BE-PART - Platform voor actuele kunst, Waregem.
  • 28.05.21 - 03.10.21 VIENNA BIENNALE FOR CHANGE 2021 - VIENNA BIENNALE, Wien.
  • 11.01.21 - 26.02.21 On Hannah Arendt: 'The Modern Age' – Richard Soulton Gallery, London.
  • 06.12.20 - 11.04.21 From A to B. Von Straßen, Highways und Datenströmen – Museum Morsbroich, Leverkusen.
  • 14.08.20 - 04.01.21 Gezeichnete Stadt. Arbeiten auf Papier 1945 bis heute - Berlinische Galerie, Berlin.
  • 26.01.20 - 26.04.20 Liebes Ding - Object Love - Museum Morsbroich, Leverkusen.
  • 08.11.19 - 15.03.20 Der montierte Mensch / The Assembled Human - Museum Folkwang, Essen.
  • 19.08.19 - 13.10.19 What beauty is, I know not - KÖNIG GALERIE BERLIN.
  • 20.07.19 - 30.11.19 ZERO GRAVITY - ERES-Stiftung, Munich.
  • 28.06.2019 - 30.08.2019 Thomas Bayrle, Stefan Löffelhardt, Heino Naujoks. Turbulenzen - Ute Parduhn, Dusseldorf.
  • 20.06.2018 - 02.09.2018 Thomas Bayrle: Playtime - New Museum, New York.
  • 25.11.2017 - 02.04.2018 A Tale of Two Worlds - Museum für Moderne Kunst, Frankfurt am Main.
  • 25.10.2017 - 02.04.2018 THOMAS BAYRLE. Wenn etwas zu lang ist – mach es länger - MAK Wien.
  • 13.12.2016 - 05.03.2017 THOMAS BAYRLE - Das Lenbachhaus, München.
  • 29.11.2016 - 01.09.2018 THOMAS BAYRLE. One Day on Success Street - ICA Miami.
  • 10.11.2016 - 07.01.2017 THOMAS BAYRLE. Cowboy Tapisserie Pietà - Air de Paris.
  • 12.09.2015 - 17.10.2015 Thomas Bayrle - Dependance, Brüssel. 



  • 1970: Prize of the Second British International Print Biennale, Bradford.
  • 1971: Scolarship of the Villa Massimo, Rome.
  • 1995: Prize of the Ars Electronica, Linz.
  • 1997: Binding-Kulturpreis der Binding-Kulturstiftung, Frankfurt/Main.
  • 1998: Hessischer Kulturpreis, Wiesbaden.
  • 2000: Cologne-Fine-Art-Prize, Cologne.
  • 2007: Goetheplakette of the city Frankfurt/Main.
  • 2012: Arnold-Bode-Prize.



  • Thomas Bayrle, one day on success street, exhibition catalog, Alex Gartenfeld & Stephanie Seidel (Publ.), London 2018.
  • Bayrle Automobil, exhibition catalog, Eva Huttenlauch & Matthias Mühling (Publ.), Munich 2017.
  • Thomas Bayrle - Musterzeichner, exhibition catalog, Nicolaus Schafhausen, Christoph Thun-Hohenstein & Bärbel Vischer (Publ.), Vienna 2017.
  • Seniorenfeier. Alf und Thomas Bayrle, exhibition catalog, Museum Wiesbaden (Publ.), Cologne 2016.
  • Thomas Bayrle, All-in-One, exhibition catalog, Devrim Bayar (Publ.), Cologne 2013.
  • Thomas Bayrle, Strippenzieher, dOCUMENTA (13) (Publ.), Cologne 2012.
  • Thomas Bayrle, 40 years Chinese Rock'n Roll, exhibition catalog, Daniel Birnbaum (Publ.), Cologne 2006.