Frank Wackerbarth

Frank Wackerbarth

Sungod (1300), 2006, Mixed media on aluminium, 1300mm x 1300mm


Swiss-born artist Frank Wackerbarth initially pursued photography as an artistic medium, but soon turned to the three-dimensional art of sculpture. After completing studies in carpentry and working in furniture design, Wackerbarth began work as an assistant to a master artist in Italy. The development of his works in aluminium began in 1995 and culminated in 1999 with these cut aluminium wall-hung sculptures. Influenced especially by the ‘Op Art’ movement of the sixties, Wackerbarth has exhibitwed several times in New Zealand alongside a number of exhibitions held across Europe in Germany, France, Spain, Italy and Switzerland.

Wackerbarth describes in his works three key elements – the piece, the observer, and the light. Each work has an individual surface motif which is highly responsive to light. Works make the most of all light available in their surroundings, attracting light, concentrating it and reflecting it back to the viewer. Minute angles within the pieces pick up surrounding colour and blend it into unexpected patterns, creating a constantly changing perspective of light, colour and form. Surfaces appear to rotate, warp and transform as the viewer shifts positions, altering perspectives and depth orientation within the piece. Wackerbarth describes this as being a kind of ‘interaction’ - as a viewer, in the act of walking past the piece to gauge different visual patterns, we are given the opportunity to engage in a physical connection with the work.
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