Michael Behrens

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Michael Behrens

My story

 

Michael Behrens was born in Düsseldorf, Germany in 1973. From the Maastricht Academy of Fine Arts in the Netherlands he received a BFA in 2003. During studies, Behrens had a proclivity for photography and abstract painting, but sculpture emerged as his true passion. Both artistical talent and technical skills led him to work as an independent artist. In 2006, he founded his own studio in Düsseldorf, where he still works and lives. Two years later, right after his first solo show in Paris, France, the Ernsting Foundation invited him to exhibit with his former professor from art school, Peter Bremers. His work received international attention due to strong color combinations and dynamic structures and shapes. “My vision was and is to create objects in which you can see and feel the energy of nature”, Behrens says. Till today, he created four different series: Underwater-WorldLandscapesSeaforms and Phoenix. For 15 years now, Behrens’ sculptures are regularly shown at international art fairs and in galleries, and are present in private and public collections around the globe. 

 

 

About the work

 

Michael Behrens plays with the idea of movement and balance in massive solid glass objects. The series Underwater world and Seaforms embody decades of personal sensory experiences above and below water. Deliberately random, yet strong shapes line organic inner structures, velvet and transparent surfaces alternate, thereby creating a dynamic harmony of inside and outside. The sculptural and technical exploration of structure is concentrated in the Landscapes: form is predefined by nature, so that structure is brought to the fore. With Phoenix,  Behrens focusses on the abstract formal language in his sculptural work. The observer’s eye is drawn to the outlines and surfaces as every object is opaque.

 

Over the years, Michael has developed his exclusive and notable style and has become one of the most recognized German sculptors in his field.

 

 

The Studio

 

One foundation stone of Behrens’ career was to find the right studio with both positive energy and an environment to handle specialized technical equipment, as a suitable power supply to install own furnaces. Already in younger age, Behrens began to acquire a highly technical background, enabling him to run the studio independently, but also to push the limits of material and ushering in a new era of kiln casted objects. Just as design and concept, all the main works are done in the studio in Düsseldorf in hundreds of hours of preparing, model and mould making, working on the glass with different techniques, melting the objects and finally, after a long annealing period, releasing the sculpture of the mould, and grinding the structure. A team of well-trained assistants allows to create sculptures of a specific scale. The final touch of the object surface is given by the best skilled grinders from the Czech Republic. The whole process to create this kind of sculptures is time-consuming and demanding as impatience or deviations from the production process are not forgiven.

 

 

Biography

 

Michael Behrens was born in Düsseldorf in 1973. He studied at the Maastricht Academy of Fine Arts in the Netherlands, where he received a BFA in 2003. His work has been part of numerous solo and group exhibitions in Europe, United States and Canada. He lives and works in Düsseldorf, Germany.

 

 

Selected Solo Exhibitions

 

2023                 Glass Museum Frauenau – Frauenau, Germany

2021                 Sandra Ainsley Gallery – Toronto, Canada

2019                 Achilles Foundation – Hamburg, Germany

2019                 Continuum Gallery ­– Königswinter, Germany

2018                 Sikabonyi Gallery – Vienna, Austria

2017                 Habatat Galleries – Royal Oak, Michigan, USA

2017                 Etienne Gallery – Oisterwijk, Netherlands

2015                 Sikabonyi Gallery – Vienna, Austria

2014                 Etienne Gallery – Oisterwijk, Netherlands

2012                 Continuum Gallery – Königswinter, Germany

2010                 De Glorie Gallery – Oosterbeek, Netherlands

2010                 Van Loon & Simons – Vught, Netherlands

2008                 Ernsting Foundation – Coesfeld, Germany

2008                 Hélène Porée Gallery – Paris, France

 

Selected Group Exhibitions

 

2021                 Glass Museum Frauenau, InterRegional – Frauenau, Germany

PAN Amsterdam with Etienne Gallery – Amsterdam, Netherlands

National Glass Museum Leerdam, United Collected – Leerdam, Netherlands

Museum for Art and Cultural History, Manufactum – Dortmund, Germany

Splash Exhibition, Habatat Galleries – St. Petersburg, Florida, USA

In the heat of the night, Continuum Gallery – Königswinter, Germany

 

2020                 Art Palm Beach with Habatat Galleries – Palm Beach, Florida, USA

Schantz Galleries – Stockbridge, Massachusetts, USA

Sandra Ainsley Gallery – Toronto, Canada

Plateaux Gallery – London, Great Britain

Etienne Gallery – Oisterwijk, Netherlands

Schiepers Gallery – Hasselt, Belgium

 

2019                 Schantz Galleries – Stockbridge, Massachusetts, USA

SOFA Chicago with Habatat Galleries – Chicago, Illinois, USA

Sandra Ainsley Gallery – Toronto, Canada

Continuum Gallery – Königswinter, Germany 

PAN Amsterdam with Etienne Gallery – Amsterdam, Netherlands

Stölting Gallery – Hamburg, Germany

2018                 Homo Faber, Michelangelo Foundation – Venice, Italy

Art Palm Beach, with Habatat Galleries – Palm Beach, Florida, USA

                        Schantz Galleries – Stockbridge, Massachusetts, USA

                        Fort Wayne Museum of Art – Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA

MaMa Salvadore Gallery – Venice, Italy

                        Schiepers Gallery – Hasselt, Belgium

 

2017                 SOFA Chicago with Habatat Galleries – Chicago, Illinois, USA

Schantz Galleries – Stockbridge, Massachusetts, USA

Sandra Ainsley Gallery – Toronto, Canada

Plateaux Gallery – London, Great Britain

MaMa Salvadore Gallery – Venice, Italy  

                        Sikabonyi Gallery – Vienna, Austria

 

2016                 Sandra Ainsley Gallery – Toronto, Canada

Art Palm Beach with Habatat Galleries – Palm Beach, Florida, USA 

Ernsting Foundation, New Acquisitions – Coesfeld, Germany                   

                        Plateaux Gallery – London, Great Britain

                        Sikabonyi Gallery – Vienna, Austria

                        Continuum Gallery – Königswinter, Germany

 

2015                 PAN Amsterdam with Etienne Gallery – Amsterdam, Netherlands

Habatat Galleries – Royal Oak, Michigan, USA

                        Sandra Ainsley Gallery – Toronto, Canada

Sikabonyi Gallery – Vienna, Austria

Continuum Gallery – Königswinter, Germany

 

2014                 Fort Wayne Museum of Art – Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA

Habatat Galleries – Royal Oak, Michigan, USA

                        Pismo Galleries – Denver, Colorado, USA

                        Etienne Gallery – Oisterwijk, Netherlands

                        Continuum Gallery – Königswinter, Germany

 

2013                 Frederik Meijer Sculpture Park – Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA

                        Ernsting Foundation – Coesfeld, Germany

                        Kunstpalast – Düsseldorf, Germany

                        Pismo Galleries – Denver, Colorado, USA

                        Sikabonyi Gallery – Vienna, Austria

 

2012                 Pismo Galleries – Denver, Colorado, USA

                        Leon Salet Gallery – Maastricht, Netherlands

                        LWL - Museum, Glashütte Gernheim – Gernheim, Germany

 

 

2011                 SOFA Chicago with Habatat Galleries – Chicago, Illinois, USA

                        Continuum Gallery – Königswinter, Germany

2010                 Bullseye Gallery – Portland, Oregon, USA

                        Kunstpalast – Düsseldorf, Germany

 

2009                 Etienne Gallery – Oisterwijk, Netherlands

                        Hélène Porée Gallery – Paris, France

 

2008                 Leon Salet Gallery – Maastricht, Netherlands

                        Hélène Porée Gallery – Paris, France

 

 

Selected Collections

 

Imagine Museum ­– St. Petersburg, Florida, USA

Seven Bridges Foundation – Greenwich, Connecticut, USA

Kunstpalast – Düsseldorf, Germany

Achilles Foundation – Hamburg, Germany

Ernsting Foundation – Coesfeld, Germany

MusVerre – Sars-Poteries, France

Novotný Museum – Nový Bor, Czech Republic

Glass Museum Immenhausen – Immenhausen, Germany

Glass Museum Lauscha – Lauscha, Germany

Museum of Modern Glass – Öhringen, Germany

 

 

Honors

 

2018                Collector´s Award, 46th Annual International Invitational Award Exhibition, Habatat Galleries Royal Oak, Michigan, USA

2017                Imagine Museum of Glass Award, 45th Annual International Invitational Award Exhibition, Habatat Galleries Royal Oak, Michigan, USA

2014                Charles Shepard Fort Wayne Award, 42nd Annual International Invitational Award Exhibition, Habatat Galleries Royal Oak, Michigan, USA

2013                Jutta Cuny-Franz Memorial Award, Selected Entries, Kunstpalast, Düsseldorf, Germany

2013                Frederic Meijer Sculpture Award, 41st Annual International Invitational Award Exhibition, Habatat Galleries Royal Oak, Michigan, USA

2012                Collector´s Award, 40th Annual International Invitational Award Exhibition, Habatat Galleries Royal Oak, Michigan, USA

2011                Kalamazoo Institute of Arts Award, 39th Annual International Invitational Award Exhibition, Habatat Galleries Royal Oak, Michigan, USA

2009                State Prize for Sculpture, North Rhine-Westphalia, Düsseldorf, Germany

2009                Jutta Cuny-Franz Memorial Award, Selected Entries, Kunstpalast, Düsseldorf, Germany

 

Projects and teaching experience

 

2013                 SAP Pinnacle Award, Selected Artist, Walldorf, Germany – Orlando Florida, USA

since 2011        Focus on own sculptural work, objects of the series SeaformsLandscapes and Phoenix

Concept creation for solo exhibitions for galleries and museums

2009                 Project management sculptural kiln-casting techniques, Arte Vetro, Damascus, Syria

2008/2009       Lectureship on sculptural figures, Technical University of Darmstadt, faculty of architecture, Darmstadt, Germany

2004/2007       Project management abstract sculpting, model and mould making, PUM Netherlands Senior Experts, Den Haag, The Netherlands – Ethiopian-Reflections, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

2004                 MusVerre – Ateliers, workshop glassblowing and hot glass techniques, Nicolas Morin,

Sars-Poteries, France

 

 

Artist in Residence

 

2010                 Artista Forum, Schott AG, Grünenplan, Germany

2009                 TGK Glass, IGS Glass Symposium, Nový Bor, Czech Republic 

2008                 Artista Forum, Schott, Grünenplan, Germany

2007                 Uroboros Glass Studios, Portland, Oregon, USA

2006                 Artista Forum, Schott, Grünenplan, Germany

 

 

Selected publications:

 

2019     Phoenix & Seaforms - Michael Behrens, authors Dr. Susann Just, Britt Heinker

Continuum Gallery, Königswinter, Germany

Catalog softcover, solo exhibition, 48 pages

ISBN 978-3-9820728-0-7

 

2019     New Series of Works, Phoenix – Michael Behrens, author Dr. Markus Klingenberg

            New Glass – Neues Glas, Art & Architecture, published by Klotz, Köln, Germany

            Magazine 1/2019, article, pages 32-35

            ISSN 0723-2454

 

2017     Solid Thoughts - Michael Behrens, author Corey Hampson

Habatat Galleries, Royal Oak, Michigan, USA

Catalog softcover, solo exhibition, 48 pages

ISBN 978-1-928572-07-7

 

2017     Next – 45th Annual International Award Exhibition, authors Corey Hampson, Aaron Schey 

Habatat Galleries, Royal Oak, Michigan, USA

Catalog softcover, group exhibition, page 14

ISBN 978-1-928572-06-0

 

 

2016    … Who would have thought it! (…Wer hätte das gedacht!) Glass Museum Alter Hof Herding,

authors Dr. Ulrike Hoppe-Oehl, Lilly Ernsting, Julia Geldmann

Published by Ernsting Foundation, Coesfeld, Germany 

Book hardcover, main catalog of the collection, pages: cover, 49, 58

ISBN: 978-3-00-053374-7

 

2014     Seaforms and Landscapes – Michael Behrens, interview Dr. Markus Klingenberg

            Etienne Gallery, Oisterwijk, Netherlands

Catalog softcover, solo exhibition, 32 pages

 

2013    Visions – 41st Annual International Award Exhibition, authors Ferdinand Hampson, William Warmus 

Habatat Galleries, Royal Oak, Michigan, USA

Catalog softcover, group exhibition, page 13

ISBN 978-1-928572-01-5

 

2013    Jutta Cuny-Franz Memorial Award, selected entries, author Dr. Dedo Kerssenbrock-Krosigk Kunstpalast, Düsseldorf, Germany

            New Glass – Neues Glas, published by Ritterbach, Köln, Germany

            Magazine 4/13, article, page 76

            ISSN 0723-2454

 

2012    Inspiration from the Deep Sea and Outer Space, author Dr. Helmut Ricke, Düsseldorf, Germany

            New Glass – Neues Glas, published by Ritterbach, Köln, Germany

            Magazine 3/12, article, page 36-43

            ISSN 0723-2454

 

2012    Seaforms & Landscapes – Michael Behrens, author Dr. Helmut Ricke, Kunstpalast, Düsseldorf, Germany

Continuum Gallery, Königswinter, Germany

Catalog softcover, solo exhibition, 48 pages

 

2012     Rotation SiO2 – 200 Jahre Glashütte Gernheim, authors Dr. Katrin Holthaus, Michael Funk

Publisher LWL- Industry Museum and Klartext, Essen, Germany

Book hardcover, group exhibition, pages 12-13

ISBN 978-3-38375-0774-4

 

2011     Expressions – 39th Annual International Award Exhibition, author Ferdinand Hampson

Habatat Galleries, Royal Oak, Michigan, USA

Catalog softcover, group exhibition, pages 16-17

ISBN 978-1-4276-5143-3

 

2010    Glaspekte, Artists from North Rhine-Westphalia in a dialogue, author Dr. Dedo von Krosigk

Publisher Museum Kunst Palast, Düsseldorf, Germany

Book hardcover, group exhibition, pages 6-7

 

2010     E-Merge, A Showcase of Rising Talents in Kiln-Glass, author Lani McGregor

Bullseye Gallery, Portland, Oregon, USA

Catalog softcover, group exhibition, pages 39

 

2009    Recent acquisitions of glass sculpture at the Glasmuseum Hentrich, Düsseldorf, author Dedo von Kerssenbrock-Krosigk, Kunstpalast Düsseldorf, Germany

The Burlington Magazine Publications Limited, London, Great Britain

Magazine, Nr. 1275, Vol. 151, article, Juni 2009, page 394f.

            ISSN 0007-6287

 

2008    Underwater-World and Icebergs, Michael Behrens and Peter Bremers, author Dr. Helmut Ricke, Kunstpalast, Düsseldorf, Germany

            Ernsting Foundation, Coesfeld, Germany

Catalog softcover, group exhibition, pages 1-24

 

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