Stephan Balkenhol (German, born 1957)
1993. Oil on canvas, 96". 2000.018
Stephen Balkenhol continues a long German tradition of woodcarving that dates from the Middle Ages. He chooses woods that have knots and irregularities and that are pale in color, soft, and easily cut. He works on unseasoned wood, which will develop serendipitous cracks as it cures, and he uses a chisel to make evenly distributed cuts that will catch the light, like brushstrokes on a painting. The artist identifies himself with Everyman, here raised on a pedestal to monumental status.