herman de vries

sculptures trouvées

24 January – 16 May


Ernst Barlach Haus


In the past decades herman de vries (*1931) has gently and persistently created an encyclopaedic work that is impressive in its consistency and clarity, and touching in its poetic force. Nature in all its facets is the subject matter of this trained biologist; stones, tree trunks, earth, grasses and flowers are his artistic material; collecting and systemising, adopted from science, are his most important methods.


In and with nature, herman de vries configures a sensuously concrete art whose frequent serial structure gives rise to an intense experience of the variety of natural life. The way herman de vries celebrates this abundance could be seen in 2015 in the much acclaimed Dutch pavilion at the Venice Biennial. This is now followed by sculptures trouvées, the first museum showing by the 84-year-old artist in Hamburg.


The exhibition traces an arc from objects found around 1960, which are shown as collages, to selected recent finds: characterful pieces of wood and stone which the artist encountered on his extensive walking tours. herman de vries writes as follows about the consonance of art, nature and life that is manifested in these sculptural forms.