Paarweise / Paired

The charm of Ansgar Nierhoff’s two-part sculpture lies in the contrast between the seemingly simple, minimalist design and the resulting complexity of the work.

A tall rectangular steel pillar was split in two with a flame cut, creating an irregular wave pattern along the surface. However, the steel was not split all the way down and the cut ended at a right angle across the steel beam.

The two resulting parts were positioned “back to back” with some distance between them. The smooth surfaces of the stelae face each other, while the wavy surfaces now form the outer sides.

Additionally, because of how it was cut at a right angle near the base, one of the stelae is taller than the other. The similarities between the two elements are immediately striking. The interlocking positive and negative forms can be visualized together as a whole. Reminiscent of a human couple, both forms stand alone while forming a closed unit.

This sculpture is part of the ensemble of works that have been exhibited at Moltkeplatz since 1981 on the initiative of gallery owner Jochen Krüper in Essen and Uwe Rüth, former director of the Skulpturenmuseum Glaskasten and the art collection in Marl. Local residents supported the project and the association Kunst am Moltkeplatz (KaM) dedicated itself to the maintenance and upkeep of the sculptures. Since 2010, the public art space and neighborhood initiative have been supplemented by the project Junge Kunst am Moltkeplatz, which promotes different approaches to young art.

Ansgar Nierhoff

geboren in Meschede; gestorben 2010 in Köln.
Gesellenbrief als Maurer.
Allgemeine Hochschulreife an der Frankenberger Edertalschule.
Kunststudium an der Kunstakademie Düsseldorf. Meisterschüler von Norbert Kricke. Zu seinen weiteren Lehrern gehörten Joseph Fassbender und der Kunsthistoriker Eduard Trier.
Umzug nach Köln.
Teilnahme an der documenta 6 in Kassel.
Zeitweise Arbeit als Assistent von George Rickey in dessen New Yorker Atelier.
Gastprofessor an der Gesamthochschule Kassel.
Professor an der Akademie für Bildende Künste der Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz in Mainz.
August Macke Preis.
Ansgar Nierhoff gilt in der Kunstgeschichte als Pionier der Edelstahlplastik.

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Essen, Moltkeplatz
Ansgar Nierhoff
38 x 38 x 370 cm
Forged steel, flame cut