Ernst Barlach:
Sculpture "Singing Man" (1928), bronze reduction, height 34 cm
Ernst Barlach:
Sculpture "Singing Man" (1928), bronze reduction, height 34 cm

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ars mundi exclusive edition | limited, 150 copies | numbered | signature | foundry hallmark | certificate | bronze | chased | patinated | reduction | size 34 x 26 x 40 cm (h/w/d) | weight approx. 13 kg

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Sculpture "Singing Man" (1928), bronze reduction, height 34 cm
Ernst Barlach: Sculpture "Singing Man" (1928), bronze red...

Detailed description

Sculpture "Singing Man" (1928), bronze reduction, height 34 cm

This masterpiece by Ernst Barlach, which was cast in bronze in 1928, is an icon of modernism and probably the most frequently represented sculptural work of German origin in the world. It adorns the covers of many illustrated books and is an integral part of world-famous museums and collections, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

This sculpture reveals the "infinity in the silent mirror of clear sounds, simple tones" (Barlach wrote in a note of 23 August 1914 about an unexpected musical experience). "Singing Man" exemplifies what Barlach defined as his artistic credo: "My mother tongue is the human figure, or the milieu, the object through which or in which the human being lives, suffers, rejoices, feels, thinks."

To celebrate the 150th anniversary of his birth, we have produced a limited edition of only 150 copies of his famous "Singing Man" as a large sculpture, exclusively available at ars mundi.

Fine bronze sculpture, hand-cast using the Lost-Wax-Process, chiselled and patinated. Moulded and reduced from the original. Limited edition of 150 copies worldwide, individually numbered and with the signature "E. Barlach" taken from the original as well as the foundry hallmark. ars mundi Exclusive Edition. With numbered certificate of authenticity and limitation. Size 34 x 26 x 40 cm (h/w/d). Weight approx. 13 kg.

"One of the most outstanding and popular designs in Ernst Barlach's oeuvre is 'Singing Man' from 1928. The artist was at the peak of his creative powers. Barlach's basic motif is the human being looking into his innermost being to the point of the abysmal. Posture, contemplation and thoughtfulness determine his expressions. Listening is part of singing. Breathing technique and speech must form a common arch from which purity emanates. Singing, like everything musical, is fleeting. What strikes the listener is not the song nor the content. It is the sequence of notes, the manner, the melos, the uniqueness in which the song inserts itself into the cosmos as a member of an infinite sequence. It is the profound moment of realisation that the artist captures in every single wrinkle of his robe, in his whole body. It resonates and resounds through the sculpture (Latin: personare) and makes the person of the singer the instrument of a more significant one." (Dr Friedhelm Häring - former museum director and curator)

Portrait of the artist Ernst Barlach

About Ernst Barlach

1870-1938, sculptor, writer and draughtsman

Ernst Barlach was born on January 2, 1870, in Wedel, Germany, and died on October 24, 1938, in Rostock, Germany. He holds an outstandingly special position within German Expressionism. As a graphic artist, draughtsman, writer and, in particular, a sculptor, Barlach created milestones in art history. Barlach's sculptural works of art have a special effect because they seek extreme experience of limits and their representation. They are works of multi-layered meaning with which he foregrounded the essence of the human being and that what stands above the self and the world.

Barlach's intention is rooted in the depths, the inner self. Shaped by war and challenging living conditions, he experiences both suffering and happiness. The human being is always the focus of his work: Ecce homo.

"I desire nothing more than to be a good and true artist as best I can. I believe that what cannot be expressed through the work can pass into the possession of another through forms. My pleasure and creative impulse continually revolve around the problems of the meaning of life and the other great mountains in the spiritual realm." (Ernst Barlach)

Ernst Barlach became an honorary member of the Academy of Fine Arts, Munich, in 1925. In 1933, he was appointed Knight of the Peace Class of the Order "Pour le mérite". In 1937, the National Socialists removed his works from public collections and spaces for being "degenerate art". Ernst Barlach died in Rostock on October 24, 1938.

Today, Ernst Barlach's works are an integral part of leading museums and collections and - if available - fetch record amounts at auction.

"The Singing Man" became Ernst Barlach's best-known sculpture, an icon of Modernism. It adorns illustrated books and posters worldwide, and the original edition is a permanent part of the collections of the world's major museums, including the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York.