Romstein works primarily in the field of painting, but she also produces sculptures, installations, drawings and collages.
Her work shows an interest in mixed media and materials. Using watercolor for example, Romstein examines contemporary models of life and fictions of existence in numerous works. „In the sludge of inertia“, KANN-Verlag is not only the title of her recent publication about watercolor, but it also circumscribes her artistic starting position. The works themselves are about psycho-emotional topographies and the ambivalent desire to counter the hierarchization of aesthetics. Thus, sceneries appear in the watercolors that at first seem strange and enraptured, yet continually refer to aspects of our present and past.
What is painted, what is found, what is built stands side by side on an equal footing. Romstein makes no attempt to hide the additive processes. Her works are often accompanied with films, videos or simple objets. A large number of references are created, which form a kind of complicity among themselves. The objects contribute to making a fictional space out of an exhibition space. It seems as in the dreamy world of her paintings and watercolors a “loss of reality” takes place. Her interest lay in the discrete hauntological aspects of the everyday and the narratives which leads to a more hallucinating reality.
Monika Romstein, born in Saarlouis, studied at the Johann Wolfgang Goethe University in Frankfurt am Main. She was student at the Städelschule Frankfurt, in the class of Christa Näher and at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design in Dundee/Scotland. Residency grants took her to the Künstlerhaus Bielefeld and Salzburg, the Egon Schiele Art Centrum Český Krumlov and the University of Applied Arts Vienna. Romstein has presented her work in numerous solo and group exhibitions in Berlin, Frankfurt, Cologne, Saarbrücken, Weimar, Bologna, Vienna, Dubai and Glasgow, among others. Her works are represented in public and private collections.
Monika Romstein lives and works in Frankfurt.