Georg Herold

Installation view 1997 © VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2017. Photo: Roman Mensing /

Installation view 1997 © VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2017. Photo: Roman Mensing /

bent poetry, w. up!



Inscribed roof battens, steel cable



Northern palace garden. Temporary installation during Skulptur. Projekte in Münster 1997


Georg Herold

* 1947 in Jena, Germany

lives and works in Cologne, Germany


Georg Herold suspended some 250 roughly sawn roof battens on steel cables beneath a group of trees 150 cm above the ground to form a web of 170 cm-wide paths over a trapeze-shaped area. The battens outlined a floating labyrinth. Visitors who ventured inside could read the various texts, quotations and messages inscribed on top of or underneath the battens. Over time, people visiting the labyrinth trod down the ground into trails that remained visible as an after-image beyond the duration of the exhibition.

In his proposal for this work Herold developed critical ideas about culture in urban space.1 In terms of materials, inscription and montage bent poetry w. up! ran counter to everything usually expected of a sculpture.2 Located in the palace garden beneath trees and exposed to all weathers, it looked above all fragile, transparent and unfinished. In 2014, Herold installed the same work in the reading room of the Gennadius Library in Athens, high above visitors’ heads.3 In this sheltered location the impact of the work’s material presence receded; the sculpture’s predominant feature was its character as a vehicle for writing and poetry.

Eckhard Kluth

1 Georg Herold, “bent poetry w. up!”, in: Klaus Bußmann, Kasper König and Florian Matzner (eds.), Skulptur. Projekte in Münster 1997, exhib. cat. Westfälisches Landesmuseum für Kunst und Kulturgeschichte, Münster, Ostfildern-Ruit, 1997, pp. 206–209.

2 Friedrich Wilhelm Heubach, “Georg Herold – ein relativ knapp gefasster Essay, der nach Möglichkeit die Arbeitsprinzipien und die konzeptionellen Grundlagen seines Oeuvres beleuchten sollen”, in: Armin Zweite (ed.), Multiple Choice. Georg Herold, exhib. cat. Museum Brandhorst, Munich, 2012, pp. 96–99.

3 A Thousand Doors, an exhibition of the Whitechapel Gallery in collaboration with NEON held in the Gennadius Library, curated by Iwona Blazwick, Athens, 2014. URL: (Last consulted: 27.01.2017).



  • Still existing / Public Collection
  • Removed
  • In the museum

Other Participation

This artist also participated in: 1987