German artist Wolfgang Flad’s solo show at Reinhard Hauff fuses wood refuse and paper-mâché to make nature’s wildest forms.
Resembling interconnected tree branches or mammal bones, artist Wolfgang Flad's thin, organic, and elongated sculptures have an inherently naturalistic quality to them. The German artist’s ongoing solo show give it away now at Stuttgart’s Galerie Reinhard Hauff combines his trademark, abstract sculptures with equally cryptic wood and varnish works hanging on the gallery walls.
Hanging from the ceiling, mounted on pedestals, and in other moments freestanding, the forms and shapes of Flad’s sculptures are “quite universal and found in many naturally grown structures,” the artist tells The Creators Project. “You can find them for instance in nerve cell networks, in bird bones, in strangler figs, and also in some large-scale images of the universe.” Beyond re-organizing natural forms, the sculptures are “representative of ongoing natural cycles of life,” according to the exhibition’s press release.
The cyclical aspect of Flad’s work is perhaps most evident in the materials he uses to make the sculptures. Besides the raw, carved timber and paint used in their construction, the works incorporate paper-mâché made from the shredded pages of art magazines and culled texts of art criticism, a regurgitation of the larger institutional context and history his art is ultimately a part of.
But Flad’s goals with these works is somehow even more ambitious than institutional critique. “Both groups of work in the exhibition have the main motive of freezing the movement of a huge, spontaneous, and dynamic gesture,” the artist grandiosely explains.
“You can also find the theme of contrasts in all of my works,” Flad adds. “There are monochrome, glossy surfaces and static straight shapes that contrast with the raw polychromatic surfaces, representing forms of growth and movement.”