Stefan Strumbel

Germany 1979

Urban Art, Pop Art

Stefan Strumbel
Stefan Strumbel
December 15, 2014

Stefan Strumbel is a German artist, born on May 17, 1979 in Offenburg. He made a name for himself by exaggerating traditional and cult artifacts such as cuckoo clocks, anchors and crucifixes and reincorporating elements of Street Art and Pop Art.

He replaces significant elements of the cuckoo’s clock, such as traditionally carved ornaments with motives that deal with the subjects of violence, pornography and death. By doing so, he puts the objects into a completely new and often provocative context, always pushing boundaries. At first sight, these objects don’t reveal any of the disturbing content but appear as beautifully crafted wooden sculptures. With their colorful and bright surface, the artworks appear as light and shiny pieces of Pop Art. Strumbel, however, creates both, a unique artificial and artistic aesthetic with his usage of extreme exaggerations in regard to form content. Another key aspect of this work refers to the concept of Heimat. A German word that cannot be entirely translated one on one but loosely refers to heritage or home. Strumbel raises significant identity questions with his work: How do I define Heimat? How do I perceive myself? How do I project myself to the outside world? How and through what do I define myself? With his art, Strumbel initiates a change in social values: Traditional ideals, clichéd notions of home and the reality of the individual are dissolved and transformed into an aesthetic that becomes an allegory of social status symbols. He exposes the mechanism of a society that in its desire for status and the pursuit of consumerism surrenders to the constant attraction of the media. With his transformed objects, Strumbel successfully creates an illusionary world, which reflects societies real maladies.
In the German village of Goldscheuer, the artist reconstructed the interior of the built in 1962 Catholic Church Maria, help for the Christians. Strumbel approached the church with the idea of a completely modern intervention. After initial skepticism towards the project, he soon owned the support of the whole town community. Even Pastor Thomas Braunstein praised Strumbel’s work as “a gift from heaven”. The re-opening of the brand new designed Church on the July 1, 2011 was recognized throughout all media platform. Leading print media such as Der Spiegel and FAZ published articles about the 6 meters high Madonna dressed in traditional Black Forest clothing, enthroning with her infant Jesus above the entrance. Funky stripes beautifying the choir wall, LED light shining on speech bubbles and comic-book elements, all innovatively adorn the Catholic Church.
The New York Times recently commissioned the artist to design the cover of the their magazine.

Stefan Strumbel currently lives and works in Offenburg.

YearExhibition TitleGallery/MuseumSolo/Group 
2015Alles schön und gut?Herbert-Gerisch Stiftung, NeumünsterGroup
2014Knock! Knock!Galeria Javier López, MadridGroup
2014VIENNAFAIR, Art FairCircle Culture Gallery, ViennaGroup
2014ArtInternational Istanbul, Art FairCircle Culture Gallery, IstanbulGroup
2014what the fuck is heimat?Circle Culture Gallery, BerlinGroup
2014Neon - Vom Leuchten der KunstStadtgalerie SaarbrückenGroup
2014Art Karlsruhe, Art FairCircle Culture Gallery, KarlsruheGroup
2013POTSE 68Circleculture Gallery, BerlinGroup
2013B U N TGalerie Kaysser, RuhpoldingGroup
2013Wanderung PromenadeCEAAC - Centre européen d'actions artistiques contemporaines, StrasbourgGroup
2013Art Karlsruhe, Art FairCircle Culture Gallery, KarlsruheGroup
2013TimeCafa Art Museum, BeijingGroup
2013EphemeralCircle Culture Gallery, BerlinGroup
2012Stefan Strumbel - HeimatKunstverein in Hamburg, HamburgSolo
2012Holy HeimatBadisches Landesmuseum, KarlsruheSolo
2012Stefan Strumbel - Kunstverein Hochrhein e.VBad Säckingen, Bad SäckingenSolo
2012Stefan StrumbelGalerie Schrade - Karlsruhe, KarlsruheSolo
2012SammlerstückeDie Kunstagentin, CologneSolo
2012HeimatKunstverein Hamburg, HamburgGroup
2012WerkschauCircle Culture Gallery at Alte Münze, BerlinGroup
2012Art Lottery, KWInstitute for Contemporary Art, BerlinGroup
2012WerkschauCircle Culture Gallery at Alte Münze, BerlinGroup
2011Stefan StrumbelGalerie Henrik Springmann, DusseldorfSolo
2011Geld ist nicht alles! - Jahresgaben 2011 12Kunstverein in Hamburg, HamburgGroup
2011Give - A Charitable Exhibition Of Limited Art EditionsCircleculture Gallery, BerlinGroup
2011Cityleaks - Urban Art FestivalCologne, GermanyGroup
2011Paper WorksCircleculture Gallery , BerlinGroup
2011The Urban ArtistCircleculture Gallery, BerlinGroup
2011New Art - Formerly Known As: New ArtCircleculture Gallery - Berlin, BerlinGroup
2011The Old CasinoCircle Culture Gallery, HamburgGroup
2011The Urban Artist – paths from subcultural creativity to contemporary artCircle Culture Gallery at Soho House, BerlinGroup
2010Home Sweet HomeCircleculture Gallery, BerlinSolo
2010Stefan Strumbel - Deine HeimatStädtische Galerie Ostfildern, OstfildernSolo
2010ESCAPE 2010 – Escape the Golden CageESCAPE, ViennaGroup
2010Le Salon Du Cercle De La Culture A BerlinCircleculture Gallery, BerlinGroup
2010MonikerInternational Art Fair, LondonGroup
2010Home Sweet HomeCircle Culture Gallery, BerlinGroup
2009One Man ShowGalerie Henrik Springmann, DusseldorfSolo
2009Self-Portrait Groupshow Circleculture Gallery, BerlinGroup
2009SCOPE, Basel Art FairGalerie Springmann, BaselGroup
2009Art Karlsruhe, Art FairGalerie Springmann, KarlsruheGroup
2009HeimatUfo Art Gallery, Hong KongGroup
2009AHOI HeimatVicious Gallery, HamburgGroup
2008Das letzte HemdForum Kunst Rottweil, RottweilGroup
2008Totale WeiblichkeitGalerie Henrik Springmann, DusseldorfGroup
2008Gedanken zur Revolution | PART 02Universal Cube, LeipzigGroup
2008The Helping Hounds Of HellHeliumcowboy, HamburgGroup
2006Stefan Strumbel — Deine HeimatKunstverein Offenburg-Mittelbaden, OffenburgSolo
2006Glanzstücke - Kunstverein OffenburgMittelbaden, OffenburgGroup