Galerie Forsblom Stockholm
May 17–August 11, 2019
Opening in the presence of the artist, May 16, 5–7pm
Galerie Forsblom is proud to present an exhibition with Stephan Balkenhol for the first time at the gallery in Stockholm. Balkenhol has been working with figurative sculptures since the 1980’s. Working foremost with wood as his material, he carves his sculptures from a massive wooden block that remains as foundation or a pedestal to the sculpture. Each strike of the chisel is left visible in the raw wood, of origins as wawa and poppel.
The sculptures portray people in detail and with realistic features, often dressed in modern, everyday clothes in primary colors painted on the wooden surface. With a close to ambivalent expression in the faces of the sculptures, there is an opportunity to interpret different emotions, to identify ourselves and create a story around the works. In the exhibition, there are also reliefs and a free-standing gigantic head sculpture. The physical presence of the sculptures and their intrinsic three-dimensional form create a spatiality that is tangible.
Balkenhol’s work refers to our human existence and he has also created symbolic sculptures of Death, as well as animals, landscapes and large public installations. Working in a traditional old technique combined with a contemporary expression, Balkenhol has created his own distinct visual language in his works.
Balkenhol (b. 1957) lives and works in Meisenthal, France and in Karlsruhe, Germany. Balkenhol is educated at the University of Fine Arts of Hamburg (1982) and he has served as professor at the State Academy of Fine Arts Karlsruhe, Germany since 1992. Balkenhol has been exhibited in numerous solo- and group exhibitions around the world and his works are represented in prominent collections, including the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington DC, USA, Hamburger Bahnhof, Berlin, Kunstmuseum Bonn, Germany, The National Museum of Art, Osaka, Japan and the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice, Italy. Galerie Forsblom has been representing Stephan Balkenhol since 2009.