Bernd Lohaus, born on February 4, 1940, in Düsseldorf, Germany, was a renowned Belgian-German artist known for his distinctive sculptures and installations. Lohaus played a significant role in the development of the Arte Povera movement and is celebrated for his exploration of materials, language, and space.
His artistic journey began in the 1960s when he studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Düsseldorf, where he was exposed to avant-garde artistic movements. Influenced by the Fluxus movement and Minimalism, Lohaus embraced a minimalist aesthetic and a preference for unconventional materials. One of his notable contributions was his involvement in the Arte Povera movement, which emerged in Italy in the late 1960s. Arte Povera artists sought to challenge traditional artistic practices by using humble and unconventional materials, such as found objects, organic substances, and industrial remnants. Lohaus’s work aligned with the movement’s ethos of exploring the relationship between art and everyday life. His sculptures and installations often incorporated raw and untreated materials, such as wood, stone, and metal. His works embodied a poetic simplicity and conveyed a sense of tactility and craftsmanship.
Lohaus had a deep understanding of the intrinsic qualities of materials and the dialogues they could generate within a given space. In addition to his material explorations, language played a significant role in Lohaus’s art. He incorporated text into his sculptures and installations, creating a poetic interplay between visual form and linguistic meaning. He also engaged with the architectural environment and created numerous site-specific installations, often responding to the unique characteristics of the space.
Throughout his career, Lohaus’s work was exhibited internationally, with solo exhibitions at renowned institutions such as the Van Abbemuseum, the Stedelijk Museum, and the Museum of Contemporary Art Antwerp. Lohaus passed away on December 19, 2010.