Stephan Balkenhol - Biography

They are figures between nobody and somebody. Realistic and simplistic. Is that expression on their faces? Or is it emptiness?They are almost always human figures, which the artist Stephan Balkenhol, born in 1957 in Fritzlar, presents in his sculptures, paintings and sketches. Women and men – distanced and anonymised. They are often larger than life-sized.


The artist knocks the works out of a log with a pedestal. Rifts and splinters, traces of his work process always remain visible. “My sculptures don’t tell stories”, says Balkenhol. “There is something secretive in them. It is not my job to reveal it, but that of the observer to discover it.”

“My sculptures don’t tell stories.”

Balkenhol’s famous works such as the six meter high cedarwood-torso “Sempre più” at the Forum of Caesar in Rome, the “57 Pinguine” in the Museum für Moderne Kunst in Frankfurt or the “12 Freunde” in the Kunstmuseum Basel, all irritate, appear free of critical connections, only detached from its presence.“I don’t want to send unambiguous messages”, says the artist. “But rather create space, which one can occupy.” 
What sense of life do his figures relate? - Coarse and equally sensuous. Balkenhol doesn’t want to give an answer to this question. He rather mirrors the observer in his existence - Undeterminable, fragile and coincidental – the post-modern man.

Stephan Balkenhol - art collections

Works of Stephan Balkenhol are located,, among others, in the Museum Ludwig in Cologne, in the Hamburger Bahnhof in Berlin or in the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. They can also be found in private collections such as the collections of Ströher, Essl or the Burger Collection.


You can buy works by Stephan Balkenhol in our shop.



Stephan Balkenhol Skulpture

Stephan Balkenhol

Stephan Balkenhol
Stephan Balkenhol Art