Thomas Pildner – Metamorphoses in Wood

Solo exhibition in Burg Kronberg, Kronberg im Taunus.

Every ambitious woodturner strives to make the beauty and liveliness of the natural material wood visible. In his “La Vida” series and the object “Seaside”, Thomas Pildner has gone a step further and created his own distinctive accents. Deep grooves follow the annual rings, growth phases, branches and irregularities, conveying a sculptural impression that goes far beyond a typical lathe-turned wooden vessel.

Thomas Pildner

Object La Vida II, WVZ 18/23, 2022, sequoia, ø 55 cm H 24 cm.

In the “Tree – Metamorphoses” exhibit at Burg Kronberg, objects are also on display in which the usual idea of a traditional wooden vessel is only marginally perceptible. “People who discover art for themselves,” Pildner says, “notice that wood is not only alive, but can also create impressive linear patterns, contrasts, figures and shapes, like waves on a beach.” Wood can appear monolithic and have an auratic effect, he adds. Working freely with the natural material, Pildner combines traditional artisanal methods with a new artistic language of form. The results are massive, thick-walled objects with attractive surfaces that push the boundaries of the familiar.

Wood has never been merely a material for him, says this woodturner and artist. “The essence of my work is already present in the unprocessed wood, which is characterized by its species, its specific grain and its typical coloration, as well as by the ‘fate’ of the individual tree.” Each of these aspects is a great source of inspiration for Pildner. Although he creates many of his works intuitively, he also sometimes makes sketches to help the process.

Thomas Pildner

Object Seaside, WVZ 21/47, 2021, sequoia, ø 56 cm, H 26 cm.

The objects in the “La Vida” series are likewise first turned “traditionally,” i.e. the workpiece is clamped in the lathe and set into rotation so that the basic body can be formed by cutting and machining with various tools. The body is then worked with various hand tools until it acquires its final shape.

Born in Bad Homburg v. d. Höhe in 1958, Thomas Pildner has worked intensively with wood as a material since 1998. His works were awarded the Hessian Design Prize in 2018 and have been acquired by private collections and by the Museum für Angewandte Kunst, Frankfurt.

Thomas Pildner

Object Seaside, (detail) WVZ 21/47, 2021, sequoia, ø 56 cm, h 26 cm.

  • Burg Kronberg
    Schloßstraße 10
    D-61476 Kronberg im Taunus
  • Opening: Saturday, Sept. 17, 2022, 2 p.m.

    Opening hours:
    Wed., Thu. + Fri. 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.
    Sat. + Sun. 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
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