social media artist

Wolf Nkole Helzle, Social Media Artist, Germany

The media artist Wolf Nkole Helzle works mainly with photography, video, installations and performances. Many of his works are participatory in nature: spectators, guests, passers-by and visitors become part of the artistic process.

One of the central themes of his artistic work is the question of the relationship between the individual and the collective. He explores this question in national and international contexts, such as the Staatsgalerie Stuttgart, the Museum Biedermann in Donaueschingen, the Ogaki Biennale in Japan and the international exhibition project media_city Seoul, South Korea. He was invited by the National Visual Arts Council, Lusaka, Zambia, the College of Art and Design, Beijing, China, Oracle Open World in San Francisco and many other international and European exhibition projects and festivals.

The artist became internationally known with his participatory photo art project "FACE(S) OF HUMANKIND", for which he has already photographed well over 50,000 people in 31 countries and four continents since 1997. An archive that is constantly expanding. Using software specially developed for this project, Helzle superimposes thousands of individual portraits to create a collective face. The question: "Who are we?" is his drive here wonderfully expressed in the statement of the philosopher Ken Wilber: "In order to understand the whole, one must understand the individual".

Another major creative area is his #WALKS. The first walks led him to a form of expression that captures the entire route, thoughts and changes in consciousness while walking: These images consist of up to one hundred subjectively superimposed individual shots along a specific hiked route. In this way, canyons of houses, clearings opening up, meadows or forests growing into the sky are created - always, however, with a path or river leading into the depth of the picture, clearly defined and yet boundless.

Last but not least, the third area should be mentioned: In diverse spatial installations, the artist articulates himself into the space. Be it a room-filling projection of thousands of moving pictures, a sofa on which visitors are invited to take a seat and have their picture taken in the midst of thousands of portraits. Be it a fragile floor installation with the message I AM WE or a wall piece with slates on which people from many parts of the world wrote the word LOVE in their mother tongue.

Wolf Nkole Helzle (born 1950) studied painting/plastic at the University of Fine Arts in Kassel with Prof. Harry Kramer. He then worked in the hardware and software industry for twenty years. Since 1996: Freelance media artist.

2000: Lectureship for media art at the University of Applied Sciences for Design, Schwäbisch Hall. 2006/2007: Studio scholarship Künstlerhaus Stuttgart, lectureship video art at the Media University, Stuttgart. 2012: Teaching position at Macromedia Academy, Stuttgart. 2015: Teaching position at the College of Art and Design, Beijing, China.

Grants from the Digital Content Fund of the Medien- und Filmgesellschaft Baden-Württemberg and the Ministry of Science, Research and the Arts of the State of Baden-Württemberg, among others. His works can be found in a large number of collections.

Member of the Deutscher Künstlerbund and VG BildKunst.

Teaching Activities
College of Art and Design, Beijing, China / Hochschule der Medien, Stuttgart / Fachhochschule für Gestaltung, Schwäbisch Hall

Awards / Scholarships
2021 Ministry of Science, Research and the Arts, of the State of Baden Württemberg
2012 Digital Content Fund MFG - Medien- und Filmgesellschaft Baden-Württemberg
2006 Atelierstipendium Künstlerhaus Stuttgart
2004 Projektförderung ifa - Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen, Stuttgart

Exhibitions (a selection)
2022 Kunstmuseum Reutlingen / Grafschaftsmuseum Wertheim / KULTSPACE Münsingen
2021 FACE(S) OF AFRIKA-Project /visual music performance im FranzK, Reutlingen
2020 One Artist Show art Karlsruhe; Kunsthalle Messmer; Yangpyeong Museum of Art, South Korea
2019 Paris Miki in Kyoto, Himeji und Nara, Japan
2018 Stiftung Regens Wagner, Absberg
2017 Deutscher Ev. Kirchentag, Berlin / Oracle Open World, San Francisco, USA
2016 Digital Humanities HUB - University of Birmingham, UK
2015 College of Art and Design, TU Beijing, China / JavaOne, San Francisco, USA
2014 Museum Biedermann, Donaueschingen / Hashima Namazu Festival, Japan / Werkschau im Kloster Bad Schussenried / Photographic Centre PERI, Turku, Finland
2011 Festival des Migrations, Luxembourg
2009 Museum für Kunst und Technologie, Schorndorf
2007 Staatsgalerie, Stuttgart
2006 UNESCO World Youth Festival, Stuttgart
2005 National Visual Arts Council, Lusaka, Zambia
2004 Ogaki Biennale, Japan / Biennale „media_city seoul“, South Korea
1998 European Media Art Festival, Osnabrück

art fairs
art Karlsruhe 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020 (One Artist Show)
Galerie Kunsthaus Fischer, Stuttgart

collections (a selection)
Museum Biedermann, Donaueschingen
Stadt Stuttgart
Landratsamt Tübingen
Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten, Baden Württemberg
Städtische Galerie Ostfildern
College of Art and Design, Beijing

publications (a selection)
"FACE(S) OF HUMANKIND" 25th anniversary of a photo art process
"'WALKS", Photographic densities
"ICH BIN WIR", Staatliche Schlösser und Gärten Baden-Württemberg
"Homo universalis", Museum Biedermann, Donaueschingen
"ICH BIN WIR", Stiftung Regens Wagner

Agencies
Kunsthaus Fischer, Stuttgart
dewald Art+Rahmen, Waldshut-Tiengen


Vita as a PDF-File