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Heiner Thiel, 2000

Heiner Thiel is a German artist who currently works with anodized aluminum. Born in Bernkastel-Kues in 1957, he studied at Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz. His past work includes steel sculptures, steel floor and wall reliefs and aluminum wall reliefs; his work is represented in private and corporate collections, as well as museums. He exhibited in Santa Fe in 1998.

Thiel's works are concave saucers in various shapes, anodized in intense colors. They can be seen either as painting or as sculpture, depending on the perspective from which they are viewed. From the front they appear two-dimensional; from the side they become three-dimensional wall sculptures, floating off the wall from a single point. This shift in perspective encourages the viewer to move around each piece and discover the fluctuations of form, intensity and color brought about by each new position.

Thiel sees himself as "someone in between the categories of 'sculpture' and 'painting'" and strives for "true interaction and integration of color and space". Of particular interest is Thiel's use of mathematical concepts, produced by computer modeling, which determine the dimensions and form of each piece. Thiel's father and brother are both mathematicians; Thiel himself has carried the family tradition over into his artwork, creating pieces that, like mathematics, are both abstract and concrete.

The mechanical procedures involved in the actual production of the pieces are carried out by professional fabricators. Thiel prefers this method of working, describing his approach as "conceptualist". An intriguing aspect of Thiel's work is the fact that these industrial processes ultimately produce an object that invites contemplation. The interaction of intense color and subtle form invite the viewer's lingering attention.

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