Volkmar ERNST

Staff Comunicazione & Media

Volkmar ERNST – pittore, è nato il 2 Settembre 1959 vicino a Stoccarda in Germania.
” In particolare le opere dell’artista HAP Grieshaber, visibili nelle città tedesche di Reutlingen ed Eningen u.A., hanno fatto crescere la mia vocazione artistica. Negli anni ’50 Grieshaber rappresentava, in una Germania sempre più materialista, una forma d’arte che lega la tradizione alla necessità di una mutazione fondamentale della nostra cultura occidentale, un’arte fatta di calore umano, di coscienza critica e di intensità spirituale.
All’età di 8 anni, avevo già deciso di diventare artista e presto mi dedicai ampiamente al disegno e alla pittura.”
Dal 1985 al 1989 Volkmar Ernst proseguì gli studi con formazioni specifiche di arte, arteterapia e istruzione dell’arte presso l’università privata “Hochschule für Kunst im Sozialen” nella città tedesca di Ottersberg, vicino a Brema.
” Durante i miei studi, presi coscienza del potere che l’esercizio dell’arte e dell’attività creativa esercitano sull’essere umano, sulla sua coscienza ed il suo intendimento degli aspetti della vita. Studiai anche i saggi sulle riforme nella pedagogia (Bauhaus, Willie Baumeister, Heinrich Jacoby, Jean Gebster ecc). E’ così che fui preso dal “espressionismo astratto” rappresentato da Pollock, Vedova, Toby, Tapies, WOLS, Hartung, Sonderborg nonchè Rothko, Giacommetti, Zao Wou Ki ed altri ancora. ”
Venne poi il periodo dell’impegno professionale in varie strutture terapeutiche e sociali.
Nel 1998, Volkmar Ernst sposò una donna di nazionalità franco-tedesca et la coppia decise di stabilirsi in Francia.
“Lontano dalla Germania, approfondii la mia ricerca artistica con delle nuove serie intitolate “icons” (da “icons I” a “icons X“, 30x40cm e 50x60cm, tecnica mista/foglia d’oro, 2000-2005).”

Dal 2005 in poi, Volkmar Ernst realizza le serie “BAD ART” (tecnica mista/foglia d’oro, 130x120cm 2005/2006), “Paysages – ou La nuit obscure de l’âme” (tecnica mista/foglia d’oro, 86x60cm, 2006), “La zone I” acrilico/tecnica mista, 120x100cm, 2006/2007) e “2008”, 2009/2010: “Tribute to Gil Scott-Heron ” 150x200cm, acrilico/guazzi/olio e foglia d’oro su tela 2010/2011: “Journal Français 2011“, 150x200cm, guazzi/olio su tela 2012/2013: “Dunkelzone” (“Zone floue“/”Dark Zone“/”Zona ombra“), 200x190cm, olio su tela.
Nel 2014 segue il trasferimento in Corsica dove Volkmar Ernst realizza le seguenti opere:
Malgré tout–Hommage à HAP Grieshaber” (Malgrado tutto-omaggio a HAP Grieshaber);
Combien de lumière l’être humain supporte-t-il ?” (Quanta luce può sopportare l’essere umano?) ;
The Blues and the abstrait truth” e poi la serie “2016“, olio su carta e tela.
Volkmar Ernst ha esposto le sue opere in numerose mostre in Germania, Francia, Italia, Svizzera, Ungheria, Stati Uniti e Corsica.

Volkmar ERNST – peintre, est né le 2 septembre 1959 en Allemagne du Sud près de Stuttgart.
« Plus que tout, les oeuvres de HAP Grieshaber, partout visibles à Eningen u.A. et à Reutlingen éveillèrent en moi la vocation artistique. Dans les années 50, Grieshaber représentait dans cette Allemagne de plus en plus matérialiste un art reliant la tradition à la nécessité d’une transformation fondamentale de notre culture occidentale, un art fait de chaleur humaine, de conscience critique et de profondeur spirituelle.
A l’âge de huit ans, j’avais déjà décidé de devenir artiste et je m’adonnai vite, de façon intensive au dessin et à la peinture. »
Ernst fit entre 1985 et 1989 des études d’art, d’art-thérapie et d’enseignement de l’art à l’université privée ‘Hochschule für Kunst im Sozialen’ d’Ottersberg, près de Brême (Allemagne).
« Au cours de ces études, je pris conscience du pouvoir que l’exercice de l’art et de l’activité créatrice exerçaient sur l’être humain, sa conscience et sa compréhension des choses de la vie. J’étudiai également les essais de réformes dans la pédagogie (Bauhaus, Willie Baumeister, Heinrich Jacoby, Jean Gebser etc.). Je tombai ainsi dans ‘l’expressionnisme abstrait’, représenté par Pollock, Vedova, Toby, Tapies, WOLS, Hartung, Sonderborg ainsi que Rothko, Giacommetti, Zao Wou Ki et d’autres encore. »
Vint ensuite l’engagement dans différentes structures thérapeutiques et sociales.
En 1998, il épousa une femme franco-allemande et le couple décida de s’installer en France.
«Loin de l’Allemagne, j’approfondis ma recherche dans de nouvelles séries intitulées «icons » («icons I » à «icons X», de 30×40 cm à 50×60 cm, technique mixte/feuille d’or, 2000-2005).»
A partir de 2005, Ernst réalisa également les séries «BAD ART» (technique mixte/feuille d’or, 130×120 cm, 2005/2006), «Paysages – ou ‘La nuit obscure de l’âme» (technique mixte/feuille d’or, 86×60 cm, 2006), «La zone I» (Acrylique/technique mixte, 120x100cm, 2006/2007) et «2008», 2009/2010: «Tribute to Gil Scott-Heron», 150x120cm, Acrylique/Gouache/Huile et Feuille d’Or sur toile 2010/2011: «Journal Français 2011», 150x120cm, Gouache/Huile sur toile 2012/2013: «Dunkelzone» («Zone floue»/« Dark Zone »), 200x190cm, Huile sur toile.
Suit le déménagement en Corse en 2014 où il réalise des tableaux « Malgré tout – Hommage à HAP Grieshaber », « Combien de lumière l’être humain supporte-t-il? », « The Blues and the abstrait truth », puis la série «2016», Huile sur papier et toile.
Expositions en Allemagne, France, Italie, Suisse, Hongrie, USA, Corse.

Volkmar ERNST – painter, was born on September 2nd, 1959 in southern Germany:
« My father was a printer and a typesetter and brought home all kinds of art books and art catalogs he had printed. My main interest as a child was drawing and painting. So it is no wonder that, contrary to the exultant mood of the « German economic wonder » of the sixties and seventies, I was only attracted by anything that touched contemporary art.
In our neighbourhood lived an artist named ‘HAP Grieshaber’. He was famous for his modern woodprints (New Figuration) and for his teaching at the innovative ‘Bernsteinschool’ art school in southern Germany after the Second World War. His work represented a Modern Art which unified tradition with the necessity of a profound transformation of western culture and the human being after World War II. His influence was of inestimable value in my artistic evolution.
Other contemporary influences include artists such as Gudrun Krueger, who became famous for her monumental modern sculptures, and Paul Jauch, who was a fabulous draughtsman. My mother knew him very well. As a young girl she had worked in his house as a housekeeper.
I remember even now that I had consciously decided to become an artist when I was about eight years old and I drew and painted intensively. »
After training as a book binder and philosophy studies, Ernst studied visual art (painting, sculpture, printing techniques) and art therapy in Ottersberg/Bremen, Germany, from 1985-1989:
« I was mainly interested in the ‘process’ of artistic creation and the influence of it on human consciousness, and also in reform educational movements (Heinrich Jacoby, Rudolf Steiner, Jean Gebser) and schools like the ‘Bauhaus’. This led me to an intense artistic and spiritual ‘discussion’ with the artists of the ‘Abstract Expressionism’ movement including Pollock, Vedova, Toby, WOLS, Tapies, Hartung, Soulages, Sonderborg and others, such as Rothko, Giacommetti, Zao Wou Ki, Beuys, Anselm Kiefer. As a result of this ‘exchange’ I created two different series of large sized oil paintings (180x160cm) entitled «1989» and «11 days through the desert».
In 1990 he began his professional life as an art therapist in various social aid structures in Germany:
«I worked in my own studio with adolescents who lived in a foster home.
Later I created a studio for art-therapy in a large psychiatric hospital near Frankfurt/Main. There I worked with people who suffered from psychotic episodes, people who were suicidal, women who suffered from anorexia and bulimia, junkies who came mostly from Frankfurt as well as alcoholics. I remember having created a 3 to 9 meter copy of Edward Hopper’s «Nighthawks» with a group of alcoholic men for their theatre play. I suggested they replace the faces of the original painting with their own. And coincidentally there was a big exhibition of Edward Hopper’s work in a museum in Essen (Germany). We went there as a group to see the original «Night hawks !».
«Parallel to that I continued to experiment with different aspects of art such as performance, contemporary dance and music improvisation with the saxophone, mainly in Frankfurt/Main (Germany).»
In 1998 Ernst married a french/german women. They decided to move to France where they live since 1999. Ernst continued his work as an artist and art therapist. He worked especially with young delinquents who came from Paris and all over France, as well as with children.
The change to France sparked a new artistic direction which resulted in new series of portraits called «icons» («icons I» to «icons X» ):
«The portrait has always fascinated me. The challenge for me is to put it in a contemporary context and include all the aspects that concern human beings and life in general. Sometimes I am stunned by the beauty of the human being, even when he is suffering – this shock can be paralyzing – as can be suffering itself as well. Not surprisingly one way not to fall into this trap of paralysis is to express oneself, especially through art.»
Since the end of 2005 Ernst has worked on more informal and abstract series including
«BAD ART» (acrylic/mixte, 130x120cm), «Landscapes or the dark night of the soul» (acrylic/mixte, 86x60cm, 2005/2006, «The Zone I» (acrylic/mixte, 120x100cm, 2006/2007) and «Fin 2007» («End of 2007») .


1994 :- Paintings and sculptures, Gallery ‘Altes Zollamt’, Limburg/Lahn, (Germany).
1995 :- Paintings and sculptures, Galeria Nuova Visualidade, Frankfurt/Main, (Germany).
1997 :- Paintings, « Catharsis and Transformation », Saint Catherine Church, Frankfurt/Main
– Art Performance: Titania, Frankfurt/Main (Germany)
2000 :- Paintings, Saint Cross Chapel, Angles-sur-l’Anglin (France)
2001 :- Paintings, « icons I »: Visual Art School, Châtellerault (France)
– Paintings, Gallery Chrämai , Anduze (France)
2002 :- Paintings, « icons II, III », Gallery Chrämai, Anduze (France)
– Paintings, « icons IV », Parada Gallery, Prescott, Arizona (U.S.A.)

2003 :- Paintings, « icons V », Theatre Art Gallery, Le Mans (France)
– Paintings, « icons VI, VII », Lycée Berthelot Art Gallery, Châtellerault (France)
2004 :- Paintings, « icons I to VII », Arte Viva Art Gallery, Paris (France)
– Paintings, « icons IV », Parada Gallery, Prescott, Arizona, (U.S.A.)
– Paintings, « Salon des Artistes Français », Paris (France)
– Paintings, « Salon d’Automne », Paris (France)
2005 :- Paintings, « icons I to IX » ‘Parcours’, Carroi des Arts, Montlouis-sur-Loire, (France)
– « icons VIII » at ‘Rencontres d’Artistes , Montmorillon, (France)
– Participation at the ‘International Artist Meeting’ in Hajos/(Hungary), to which I had been
invited by the Conseil Général de la Vienne (regional administrative body), Poitiers
– Salon d’Arts Plastiques de Poitiers, « icons IX », The Lefranc Bourgeois prize
2006 :- March, Paintings since 1989, Arte Viva Art Gallery, Paris (France)
– September, Paintings, Retrospective from 1989 to 2006, « Château D’Harcourt »,
Chauvigny, (France)
– November, Paintings, « Landscapes or the dark night of the soul », «BAD ART» and
selections from different series, Galerie Rivaud, Poitiers, (France)
2007: – March, Galerie 39A, Limoges, (France), selections from « icons I «to « icons X »
2007: – November, « Salon du Petit Format » Lencloître, « Les Vernis de Lencloître »
2008: – Mai, « Neuvième Biennale Artistique du Haut-Poitou et Clan », Lenclôitre-November,
Invited to the « Biennale » in Bourges, France

volkmar_opera_1 volkmar_opera_2

« (…) At the edge of western abstract art the works of Volkmar Ernst surrounds itself with a rich and prolific absence which erases everything what concerns the visible and which is called blindness within the manifestations of the world. In large extending gestures Volkmar Ernst lets vibrate the majestic unspoken of the deaf ground water of the archaic mind – moving off from daily temptations. His art called ‘abstract’ is like an unveiling against the current – like hidden convulsions of the most distant mental night where everything hides and remains silent. Through waves of distant meditation which gets close to the sacral the space of art opens up to foreign parts and the immensity. (…) Volkmar Ernst navigates in higher creation between innocence and experience, between desire and mystery. He intensively crowds the surfaces. He preserves the power of the depths. He respects the darkness of the univers. Powerfully present the cloudy opacity grows and moves in big plates of night. (…) The basic elements which dig a symbolic univers of incredible depth fuse together in the tense composure of Volkmar Ernst. (…) No message, no speculation, no talk. (…)
It is the most affected/unaffected impact which the artist communicates here:
when the in the universe endlessly crushed and reconstructed mental night only lets through the essential. (…) In the depth of the unattainable.
Art is the amazing abyss of our affects. »

Cristian Noorbergen (Philosopher, Art historien and Art critic)

Volkmar ERNST *1959, painter – Occhiatana, Corsica / France

Exhibitions: Germany, France, USA, Switzerland, Hungary, Italy, England, China
Biennale of Bourges, IAE/University of Poitiers/France
Guoyi Art Museum Bejing/China

Collections: Conseil Régional Poitou-Charentes/France
University of Poitiers/France, Hajos/Hungary