Sergiu Toma

(b. 1987, RO)

Portrait of Sergiu Toma. Photo: Galleria Doris Ghetta.

Born in 1987 in Baia-Mare, Romania, Sergiu Toma is a contemporary artist working and residing in Cluj-Napoca, Romania. Toma is best known for his oil paintings rendered in a representational visual language, marked by an investigation of the medium of painting an sich.

The Romanian artist is inspired by theatricality, renaissance and baroque – to name a few – which is reflected in his dynamic imagery, playful approach towards light and shadow or his quest for paintings' mysterious qualities. Dream-like scenes and everyday life find their way to the canvas in Toma's studio, balancing between fiction and reality, everyday life and fantasy, memory and oblivion.

One could argue there are two spheres in Sergiu Toma's works; the interior and the exterior. Although both have a different nature and character, these separate spheres seemingly connect within Toma's oeuvre. Symbolic objects fill the interior spaces, depicting the artist's direct environment, as the outdoor spaces and scenes carry the same aura of mysticism and dream-like character creating an uncanny transition between both spheres.

An important notion throughout his works seems to be the notion of memory and remembrance, and how this memory is affected by time as our perception of our memories continue to shift everlastingly. Out of focus objects, a pictorial haze hovering on top of the canvas as the artist finishes a piece with thin and transparant layer of paint or strokes of rubbed out paint function as a visual metaphor for the instability of our memory.

Sergiu Toma belongs to a new generation of artists from the Fabrica de Pensule in Cluj-Napoca, Romania. As a result, Toma is one of the main representatives of the contemporary art scene in Cluj, Romania.

Career facts

Having studied at the Accademia Albertina Delle Belle Arte in Torino, Italy, and the University of Art and Design in Cluj-Napoca, Romania, Sergiu Toma achieved his MA in the Department of Painting in 2011, followed by a residency at the Romanian Academy in Rome, Italy.

Ever since, the Romanian painter has been represented by several renowned galleries such as Galleria Doris Ghetta in Ortisei, Italy or Galerie Fravi in Domat, Ems, Switzerland. Toma participated in the group exhibitions The Wanderers, Contemporary Painting from Cluj at Taittinger Gallery in New York, the United States of America, curated by Maria Rus Bojan and Richard Taittinger; Romanian Scene at Espace Cultural Luis Vuitton in Paris, France and European Travellers, Art from Cluj Today at the Mucsarnok Kunsthalle in Budapest, Hungary.

Sergiu Toma's work is collected by national and international private collections.

Selected works

Sergiu Toma, Amor fati 2, 2021. Oil and acrylic on canvas – 60 × 60 cm. Courtesy Galleria Doris Ghetta. Photo: Pavel Caragau.

Sergiu Toma, Study (School bus), 2021. Acrylic on wood – 46 × 36 cm. Courtesy Galleria Doris Ghetta. Photo: Pavel Caragau.

Sergiu Toma, Amor fati, 2021. Oil on canvas – 140 × 100 cm. Courtesy Galleria Doris Ghetta. Photo: Pavel Caragau.

Sergiu Toma, Artist dreaming (after Oscar Dominguez, 2021. Oil on canvas – 40 × 40 cm. Courtesy Galleria Doris Ghetta. Photo: Pavel Caragau.

Sergiu Toma, untiled, 2018. Oil on canvas – 60 × 60 cm. Courtesy Galleria Doris Ghetta.

Sergiu Toma, Walk with Me, 2017. Oil on canvas – 200 × 130 cm. Courtesy Tajan ArtStudio.

Sergiu Toma, Time space, 2017. Oil on canvas – 200 × 200 cm. Courtesy Tajan ArtStudio.

Sergiu Toma, The visitors, 2017. Oil on canvas – 200 × 300 cm. Courtesy Tajan ArtStudio.

Sergiu Toma, The Wormhole, 2016. Oil on canvas – 200 × 200 cm. Courtesy Galleria Doris Ghetta.

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