Markus Schaller

Born in 1967 in Germany, Markus Schaller lives and works in Berlin.

Schaller's work embodies the intrinsic nature of humanity by merging the mind with its physical grounds. While studying at the Berlin University of the Arts under Professor Rebecca Horn, new media were all the rage; but Schaller opted for a different path when he favored steel, an ancestral if not archaic medium. The act of forging is an intensively physical and arduous process which unites two primordial elements: fire and iron. The elementary shapes that compose Schaller's steel figures also go back to this primitive roots of mankind, while their elongated silhouettes is what lifts them above the animal stage.  Each piece is infused with its own distinctive character, hence becoming immediately recognizable as Schaller's work.  In addition to this, they are all stamped with letters in unexpected locations. These linguistic clues can be either read individually like a reminiscence of ancient inscribed tablets or combined to create poems. Beyond the artist's passion for literature and prose, they underlie man's ability of thought and speech or, as suggested by Wieland Schmied, are attempts to make us aware of the legibility of the world.

More recently, Schaller's interest for the origins of matter have lead him to investigate the scientific theme of Quasicrystals. The Aluminium-Manganese alloys produced the unusual diffractograms which today are seen as revelatory of quasicrystal structures. This intricate molecular pattern, similar to the Arabic Meshrebiya, continues to fascinate Schaller for, as he says, it "refers to human history and nature in many different ways". They can be seen anywhere if one pays attention: tiles, fabric, flowers, etc. Translating these in his own creative language, Schaller uses a 300t hydraulic press to emboss elegant patterns on aluminum sheets.


Since 1993, he has exhibited in private galleries, museums and sculpture gardens worldwide. His monumental sculptures have been major attractions during the 2000 and 2004 Vancouver Sculpture Biennales and he regularly participates in the Venice Biennale in Italy.


Markus Schaller's biography (pdf)
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