VON KOELNAU Biography


Louis von Koelnau’s medium is light; he twists and turns it, he pushes it through the narrows and brings it out to the broader areas of a work in a burst of energy!  Every von Koelnau sculpture is contoured from its earliest inception to achieve another life and ultimately come alive and function as a light/energy conductor.




When Von Koelnau begins his ruminations on a certain shape or subject, he first makes a fist size sketch in wax, always devising to make the completed sculpture function primarily as a composition of lenses.  In a world grown tired of it’s own flash, von Koelnau returns our minds to the contemplation of light for its own sake, light which enlivens and energizes and  which, by virtue of its commanding role in the universe, never ceases to fascinate us.




It is no surprise to find Von Koelnau’s color range is mainly in pure, jewel-like colors of the spectrum: sapphire and icy blues, to amethyst and mauve, soft to dark green, rich amber, and red as well as  yellow.  Von Koelnau’s non-objective and abstract forms work not only as vehicles for light conduction, but also as pleasing organic shapes.




Since Von Kpelnau's boyhood, the bear studies have been recurring in his oeuvre.  He says he is actually sculpting human beings: his families, adults, and children, in the guise of bears.  Why bears?  He doesn’t have an answer; he just keeps on conducting with his collectors an unspoken dialogue about warmth and intimacy and one’s own private mythology.  Forty-five years of constant demand for the bears seems to be proof enough of their lasting vitality.




Louis Von Koelnau works solely in polyresin, a modern compound.  It is not unlike amber, which is the fossilized resin of pine trees.  Working as a boat builder and taxidermist for twenty years, Von Koelnau acquired extensive knowledge about the use and control of the polyresin medium.  Many artists have noticed the artistic potential of this medium, but almost invariably find it impossible to work with.  Such a situation virtually guarantees the uniqueness of Von Koelnau’s work.




Having spent twenty years acquiring necessary technical expertise, Von Koelnau is not about to give away any clues to budding artists.  When they ask such questions as "How do you get them out of the mold without cracking?",  he will reply, cryptically, "I hold my mouth just right while I am pouring!"



Cosmopolitan Fine Arts is proud to represent the sculpture of Louis Von Koelnau.