Dieter Finke. Sculpture and Painting

The work of the sculptor Dieter Finke spans almost a century. He worked predominantly in Berlin and New York and created an œuvre of fascinating intensity and a fondness for experimenting. In his sculptures, architecturally designed pictures and drawings, his artistic work moves between abstraction and objectivity as well as between plane and dimensionality. Our exposition assimilates this versatility, placing particular emphasis on his masterful handling of different materials like wood, bronze and wrapping paper. His well-known animal sculptures, which often have an archaic appearance, were crafted with expressiveness and dynamic.
 
We cordially invite you to the opening of our exhibition, “Dieter Finke. Sculpture and Painting” on Friday, 20 April, at 6 pm. Dr. Julia Wallner, director of the Georg Kolbe Museum, will give the introduction.

Dieter Finke | Wine Spirits | about 2000 | mixed media on paper | verso estate stamp | 124 x 169 cm
Dieter Finke | Wine Spirits | about 2000 | mixed media on paper | verso estate stamp | 124 x 169 cm

About the Artist
 
Dieter Finke (1939-2011) liked to work on several projects simultaneously. Whichever materials and ways of expressing he chose – his special attention was always focussed on the design of movement, transparency, light, and space.
 
From 1959 to 1963, Dieter Finke studied sculpture at the College of Visual Arts in Berlin under Paul Dierkes and as the last student of Renée Sintenis. In 1967 Dieter Finke received the Georg Kolbe Prize. This was the first time that the jury recognized an abstract work, making Finke the first artist working non-figuratively to receive the significant prize.
 
The 1970s were particularly intense for the sculptor’s pioneering. In 1974 he went to New York for some time, where he, as one of the first artists, began to create large-scale chalk drawings on wrapping paper. In that same year, his artistic interest in animals was reawakened on a remote island in New Hampshire. He spontaneously constructed animal sculptures with paper and wood, which he left to nature. Finke’s first solo exhibition in 1976 in Berlin decisively affirmed his first-class drawing skills. In the following years, the artist lived mainly in New York. With the mid-80s a compelling alternation between New York and Berlin begins.
 
In 1988, for the first time, Dieter Finke had an animal sculpture cast in bronze at the Berlin foundry Noack. As element of design, the figure’s construction and structure remained visible, while the body of the animal and the space seem to diffuse into each other. In the 1990s, the sculptor modelled depersonalized figures in wood and bronze abstract - among them a group of guards. Their surface and patina convey wildness and expressiveness. These timeless shapes they seem to guard a secret.