Stephan Balkenhol

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    April 6, 2019 - July 14, 2019
    Museum für Sepulkralkultur
    Weinbergstraße 25–27
    34117 Kassel, Germany

    6th April – 14th July 2019
    opening: 5th April 2019, 7.30 pm

    The Museum for Sepulchral Culture, which has been dedicated to the topics of dying, death, burial, mourning and remembrance since 1992, shows old and new works on death in collaboration with Stephan Balkenhol. It is the artist’s first thematic museum exhibition in his adopted home Kassel.

    The sculptor Stephan Balkenhol has already created many sculptures, reliefs and prints in his artistic work, in which he deals with death in a symbolic way. In "Knochenmann" (bone-man) or in series of skull reliefs, his personal interest in the final mystery of humanity is revealed, as is his unique and characteristic treatment of wood. The open and light-flooded architecture of the museum, designed by Wilhelm Kücker, creates special spatial situations for the mostly coloured sculptures.

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    June 9, 2018 - September 16, 2018
    Kunsthalle Emden
    Hinter dem Rahmen 13
    Emden, Germany

    The exhibition comprises about 40 works made of wood along with works on paper. It allows an overview of Balkenhol's most recent work and delves into his way of working.

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    January 19, 2018 - April 22, 2018
    C/ Alemania
    29001 Malaga

    From 19. January until 22. April 2018 CAC Malaga presents a major exhibition by the German artist Stephan Balkenhol, one of the most prominent and original sculptors on the international scene.

    The selected works on display, all in wood and created in recent years, reveal his continuing interest in the human figure and its relationship with space. The artist represents contemporary figures, free-standing sculptures or reliefs in wood, of ordinary, anonymous men and women, stripped of all narrative content so that viewers can project their own image onto them.

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  • Sculptures and Reliefs
    September 8, 2016 - November 13, 2016

    Moscow Museum of Modern Art presents the first major Russian solo exhibition of German sculptor Stephan Balkenhol (b. 1957), spanning the entirety of the artist’s career.

    For over three decades Stephan Balkenhol has been among the most acclaimed contemporary sculptors in the world. His works are held in public and private collections in Frankfurt, Bremen, Karlsruhe, Hamburg, Copenhagen, London, Paris, Johannesburg, Hague, New York and Chicago among others. Sculptures and Reliefs features the artist’s sketches, as well as many of his completed works.

    Pursuing the European tradition of wooden sculpture that dates back to the Middle Ages, Stephan Balkenhol carves his sculptures from a wide range of woods including wawa, cedar and fir, without any assistance. His human figures are never polished to waxy smoothness and artifice: like humans they would not be themselves without imperfections. The rough surfaces and cuts create a sense of a life force hidden inside the figures of seemingly apathetic humans—an evidence of the artist’s love of and faith in humanity.

    Balkenhol is not a storyteller. The characters he portrays are strangers who are vaguely similar to each and everyone of us, and at the same time, very much distanced from the viewer. The artist deliberately avoids complicated descriptions and clever connotations in the titles of his works: instead, they reaffirm the absolute ‘normality’ of his characters deprived of social class or personal characteristics. Any interpretations of his works are crushed by the silent presence of his roughly carved figures. The question they seem to raise is whether we can still see a human behind the alienation and spectacle of contemporary life?

    Sculptures and Reliefs is inscribed in the continuity of a series of exhibitions exploring German contemporary art. Moscow Museum of Modern Art has previously hosted the exhibition The Paths of German Art from 1949 till the Present Day (2014), and a retrospective exhibition of Joseph Beuys Appeal for an Alternative (2012).

    A catalogue of the exhibition in Russian and in English will feature essays by Georgy Nikich and Matthias Winzen, as well as an interview with the artist.


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  • Stephan Balkenhol
    May 22, 2016 - October 9, 2016
    Fondation Fernet-Branca
    Saint-Louis/Basel, Switzerland

    The Fernet-Branca Foundation will host a double-exhibition bringing together works by Stephan Balkenhol and Philippe Coignée.

    The establishment of a link between Philippe Cognée and Stephan Balkenhol’s recent productions encourages the viewer to bring into question the process of figuration, a subject dear to both artists since the 1980s.

    Their work captures the viewer’s attention with its powerful originality, distancing itself from the constraints imposed by the Minimalist and Conceptual art movements.

    The subjects of their artistic research range from reality to everyday life, landscape, and the whole of human experience. Such themes are examined by keeping a critical distance, from a detached point of view, allowing to turn a seemingly fleeting image into something eternal.


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  • Stephan Balkenhol
    October 23, 2014 - February 22, 2015
    Landesgalerie Linz, Linz, Austria

    From 23 October 2014 to 22 February 2015 the State Gallery at Landes Museum presents contemporary sculptor Stephan Balkenhol with a comprehensive exhibition for the first time in Linz, Austria.

    The focus of the Linz show will be on works from the artists' most recent phase of work, including figurative group installations in which sculptures are linked with murals, and large-scale reliefs arising from the revision of photo ink jet on wood.

    For more information about the exhibition please click here

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  • Memorial for Jean Moulin
    From July 10, 2014

    On July 10th at the main train station of Metz a memorial by the German sculptor Stephan Balkenhol will be unveiled. The memorial shows the french member of the resistance Jean Moulin who played a major role in the french Résistance as well as in defeating the national socialistic Germans during the second world war.

    The artist created an empathetic memorial for Jean Moulin presenting him not as a hero but as a human.


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  • Stephan Balkenhol
    April 12, 2014 - August 24, 2014

    Stephan Balkenhol will be presenting his works in a solo exhibition at the Kunstmuseum Ravensburg in Germany. Balkenhol is recognised not only for the technical prowess with which he hand carves each of his wooden sculptures, but for his continual devotion to exploring the role of the figure within contemporary art. His works are all hand carved from singular blocks, often of poplar or wawa wood.

    Alongside existing works, Balkenhol will present new work at the Kunstmuseum based in the stunning town of Ravensburg in southern Germany.


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  • Richard Wagner Monument
    From May 22, 2013

    On the occasion of Richard Wagner´s 200th birthday the city of Leipzig invited Stephan Balkenhol to create a monumental sculpture for the existing plinth designed by Max Klinger. The portrait of the young and dynamic Richard Wagner made out of painted bronze and steal will be unveiled on may 22nd 2013 at the Promenadenring in Leipzig.




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