Heinz Baumgarten

Heinz Baumgarten studied at the University of Fine Arts Kassel and at the Johhannes Gutenberg University in Mainz. An early and pioneering impulse he got at that time by intensively dealing with the graphic notiation of New Music, that he had got to know at the Darmstadt Summer School for New Music in 1969. He had for quite some time been interested in analyzing the interrelation of musical and sculptural forms of expression.

Consequentially his works were non-objective from the beginning. Freqently they implicated sequences or biographical-narrative moments, which consistently make visible  processual events and complex levels, which – at least in the earlier works –  suggest the visualisation of musical equivalents. In some of the works of the last years the element of a score-like arrangement of picture-elements reappears and so the circle is complete.

Baumgarten's early work of the late 1970s is still characterized by the intensive engagement with important examples like Fritz Winter or the painers of the „Informel“. In the 1980s the element of collage increasingly finds entrance into Baumgarten's works, always circumscribed by painterly passages and thus integrated into the coherence of the picture's context. Non-artistic material and elements of everyday reality also find a use as quotations and complete the visual source Baumgarten draws upon.
Especially significant for Baumgarten was meeting Heinrich Siepmann personally in Mühlheim, whom he showed his works in 1985. In the year 2000 he visited the aged painter again at his studio. Siepmann's artistic concept encouraged Baumgarten in the essential principles which he already saw as developped in his own works.

Meanwhile his works reveal, apart from the repeatedly erupting gestic-scriptural characterists, a marked constructive approach, which divides the picture into zones and so opens the space for the progressive display and sequence of partly contrasting segments.

The merging of apparently incoherent and seemingly self-contained zones within the context of a picture is an essential element in Baumgarten's works. An element of succession that simultanously becomes visible and invites the viewer to read the pictures, serves as a clip for a certain drifting apart of the various parts of the picture, that often seems not to dissolve and thus constitutes partly complex internal referential context.

The sensory-aesthetical dimension – in the later works – is always coordinate in relation to the constructive basic shape of Baumgarten's works, in the aesthetic of colour or the material characteristics of the self-made (often elaborately and in numerous working steps) elements of collage and set pieces.