SEBASTIAN SPRENG, visual artist
Named 2017 KNIGHT ARTS CHAMPION by the Knight Foundation, his works currently exhibited at the Knight Concert Hall, Adrienne Arsht Center, Argentinean born visual artist Sebastian Spreng established in Miami three decades ago. Music is pivotal in his work and whole series of paintings were based on musical structures and cycles – Liederkreis I and II, Sinfonietta, Impromptus, Der Ring des Nibelungen, Chamber Music, Mahler Songs and Das Lied von der Erde. Significantly, his works grace program covers of the Florida Philharmonic Orchestra, New World Symphony and the Florida Grand Opera, as many CD covers, including the Grammy award-winning Da Pacem by Arvo Pärt. With more than fifty solo shows in Buenos Aires, Miami, Santa Fe NM, Seattle, Atlanta, Düsseldorf, Munich, Essen, Sun Valley, Toronto,Tuscany, France, Japan, Uruguay, Nicaragua, Panama and Venezuela, and works in private and public collections, including the Perez Art Museum Miami, Fundación Ortiz Gurdián, Florida Grand Opera, Museo del Barrio, Miami-Dade Public Library System, Barclays, Banco Santander and Merrill Lynch.
In 1994, he was commissioned by Metro-Dade Art In Public Places to create a exhibition at the Miami-Dade Government Center as a memorial tribute to the American with Disabilities Trailblazers. In 2009 his work Daphne was selected for the book Speak for the Trees, alongside 70 other artists.
In 2012, he was selected as one of the 100 Latinos of Miami and as the 2013 Visual Artist in residency of the 11th Edition of the Music@Menlo Chamber Music Festival. Spreng writes about classical music since 1988, first as foreign correspondent for Clásica Magazine in Argentina. Currently he writes articles, comments and reviews for several publications including El Nuevo Herald, Knight Foundation Arts and his own Miami Clasica. Since 2009 he is a member of the Music Critics Association of North America. He was honored with he Dr. Sanford L. and Beatrice Ziff Outstanding Arts Contributors by Classical South Florida of 2015. After Liederkreis II and Salad Bar, Song for the Earth was his third solo exhibit with KELLEY ROY GALLERY in Miami-Wynwood.
FOLLOWING MAINLY MOZART FESTIVAL OPENING CONCERT HONORING SEBASTIAN ON MAY 13TH, HIS EXHIBITION DRESDEN WILL COMMENCE AT THE LOWE ART MUSEUM ON MAY 17TH. TO RSVP TO THAT EVENT PLEASE CLICK ON THE IMAGE BELOW.
About Sebastian Spreng’s DRESDEN exhibit at the Lowe Art Museum
…comprises a series of iPad images printed on aluminum as a sort of imaginary "racconto" of the genetic memory that we bring imprinted in our minds. “Images that haunted me since I have use of reason, images symbolizing the terrifying ability we have to destroy in minutes what it took us centuries to build. Why Dresden? As the "Florence on the river Elbe" the city unified two cultures essentially European, a significant crossroads, a cradle of civilization. South and North, East and West.
That Florence of Goethe, Schiller, Bach, Gutenberg and Beethoven ended in the most ferocious firestorm one night. I can visualize thousands of papers flying like burned butterflies, souls, thoughts, ideas, dreams, human ashes….
That universe carved through centuries annihilated in nights of horror. An ultimate punishment for the horrors of a brutal regime, alas, in that punishment a whole culture perished.
That Florence was obliterated on February 13, 1945. The collapse of its cathedral was the implosion of a whole world.
Then the rebuilding, reconstruction, the manicurated copies. After seventy years everything looks the same but it is not, it only seems to be… The city painted by Bernardo Bellotto, adored by Caspar David Friedrich, where Richard Strauss premiered his operas and Gerhard Richter was born. Today is a mirror to look at and not repeat mistakes.
From Guernica to Aleppo through Rotterdam, London, Berlin, Coventry, Hamburg, Warsaw, Hiroshima and Nagasaki, DRESDEN is a compilation of a few images of cities devastated from the air, of what the executioners saw without seeing his victims.
Doing harm without conscience, for a reason without a reason. That perverse game from the air, playing like bad children, brings me back to the first imagined images at eight years old when the world was so far away and today confronts me with a never again that seems more and more distant every day.
In the end, this is not about Dresden, it is about war, nonsense…
Just a meditation on mankind’s infinite capacity for both good and evil”
May 17th - September 23 2018