Art@Site Bernhard Heiliger Phönix I Nuernberg

Bernhard Heiliger


Phönix I

Germanisches Nationalmuseum
big gesture
Once the diagonal lines reached the outer corner, they proceed as horizontal lines. In this place diagonal lines make a movement still up.
The created surfaces have rough with holes and also straight horizontal marks.
The areas are big and heavy. This is a major work of art.
By Theo,

groot gebaar
Nadat diagonale lijnen een uiterste hoek hebben bereikt, gaan zij over in horizontale lijnen. Op deze plek maken diagonale lijnen een beweging nog verder omhoog.
In de ontstane oppervlakten liggen grove openingen en ook rechte horizontale accenten.
De oppervlakten zijn groot en zwaar. Dit is een voornaam kunstwerk.
Door Theo,
Bernhard Heiliger, *1915 Stettin, †1995 Berlin.
Grosser Phönix I, 1964-65.
Bronze, 400 x 320 x 160 cm. Standort: Germanisches Nationalmuseum, Kornmarkt, 1966 aufgestellt
Bernhard Heiliger (11 November 1915, Stettin - 25 October 1995, Berlin) was a German artist. He was considered "West Germany's foremost sculptor", and his large public artworks are a prominent presence in many German cities, especially Berlin.
Heiliger's diverse output stretches from his early, organically abstracted figures to his late nonobjective, geometric abstractions. His early work (1945–1962), focuses on the human figure, which is treated in an organic style influenced by Aristide Maillol and Henry Moore. Also from this period is a series of portrait busts of prominent contemporary Germans. The artist departed from the human figure in his second period (1962–1970), instead developing imagery of the"flight of birds and vegetable forms" influenced by the nonrepresentational Informelstyle. The seven-meter-high The Flame (Flamme, 1962–63), commissioned by the city of Berlin for Ernst-Reuter-Platz, is considered the key work in the transition between the early and middle periods. The Five Continents (Die fünf Erdteile, 1961), by contrast, still alludes to the human figure in the torso-like shapes that make up the composition.
Kosmos 70, commissioned in 1970 by the city of Berlin for the restored Reichstag building, marks the transition into Heiliger's final period, where spheres and angular forms linked by lines of wire allude to planets and solar systems. The different stylistic phases in Heiliger's career are connected to changes in material: whereas his works from the 50's and 60's are cast materials, such as cast stone or bronze, the works from the 70's onward are most often made of stainless steel or corten steel."
His early works, often in cement and mainly figurative, still show unmistakable signs of the influence of Moore, which was ubiquitous at the time. Heiliger soon broke away, however, finding his own unmistakable form language. Like the drawings, Heiliger’s portrait heads constituted an independent field of work from the beginning, with their fascinating mixture of precise reproduction and abstraction of characteristic facial features. The artist developed a distinctive style during the 1950s with the vegetal breaking through the surface of his ever more abstract sculptures, a tendency that peaked in the late 1960s in the partially polished bronze works.
It was Heiliger, along with Hans Uhlmann and Karl Hartung, who re-established the international reputation of German sculpture. His design for the memorial to the Unknown Political Prisoner (1953) was awarded the Federal Government Prize and the Appreciation Prize of the Institute of Contemporary Art. He also rapidly attained international recognition through his participation in documenta I and documenta II in Kassel (1955 and 1959) and the Venice Biennale (1956). Numerous individual exhibitions and important commissions followed, such as the Tree of Figures for the World Fair in Brussels in 1958. Heiliger was awarded the Grand Cross of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany in 1974, the Lovis Corinth Prize of the Federal Ministry of the Interior in 1975, and honorary membership of the German Association of Artists in 1984. Following the last retrospective, which was held in 1995 in the Federal Art and Exhibition Hall in Bonn, there was a posthumous exhibition in 1998 in the National Museum in Heiliger’s birthplace, Stettin. Heiliger’s portrait heads were shown from 2000 to 2002 in six German museums, and in 2005 in the Beelden aan Zee Museum in Scheveningen (Holland) and the Museum of Modern Art in Passau.