Contemporary Arts > Manfred Müller

Manfred Müller

Manfred Müller (Düsseldorf, 1950)

Throughout his career Manfred Müller has made large-scale, site-specific sculptures and installations from diverse materials such as steel, wood, cement, paper, and recycled industrial machine parts. Trained as an engineering draftsman, Müller uses architecture, the industrial landscape and simple geometry to explore the relationship between objects, space and meaning. These works unite disparate elements into eloquent combinations of form and color. While his artistic practice is rooted in sculpture, Müller has consistently produced sketches and drawings that support and inform his larger works. Sometimes they are studies towards larger projects, but more often the sketches are a response to what is happening in the studio and are conceived of and executed as independent works in their own right. Employing familiar techniques on a smaller scale, Müller interrupts the paper's flat surface with incised lines and raised edges to give the drawings a sculptural three-dimensionality. These subtly nuanced changes in texture allow light to play on the surface, acting as the point of contact between drawn line and edge tension. Müller transforms the humblest of materials into objects of profound poetic beauty. These works on paper continue to serve Müller as a rich depository of ideas for his ongoing visual diary.

» CV & Biography
Under My Skin (112)
Under My Skin (112-125)
Under My Skin (17)
White Prelude
Exordium I
Oxid Yellow
White Prelude
White Prelude
White Prelude
Red Prelude & White Prelude
Red Prelude
Red Prelude
Palacio de Memoria: Five Bowls
Palacio de Memoria: Five Bowls
Palacio de Memoria: Five Bowls
Hidden Cache / Past-Present
Red Prelude Offspring
Blue Prelude Offspring
Blue Prelude Offspring
Blue Prelude Offspring
Glaciem Frigore
Blue Prelude
Blue Prelude
Red Coat Surviver
Grey Coat Survivor
Grey Coat
Catalogues Manfred Müller


Manfred Müller was born 1950 in Düsseldorf, Germany. From 1967 to 1970, he apprenticed as a technical draftsman, receiving his state license as an engineering draftsman. From 1971 to 1975 he studied visual communication at the university in Düsseldorf. During the this period, he was a conscientious objector from military service and spent his time in civil service working at a foster home. Following his service, he worked as a freelance graphic designer at Grey Advertisement and BBDO Advertisement. From 1976 to 1981 he attended the Kunstakademie of Fine Art in Düsseldorf—studying as a master-class student under Erwin Heerich (1922-2004). After leaving the Kunstakademie in 1981 he was awarded a Cité des Artes Scholarship, Paris, France and received the Grand Price for Fine Arts of the City of Düsseldorf in 1983, and the German Industry Endowment of the Arts in 1985. He was selected to be part of the exhibitions Dimensionen IV and Dimensionen V which were shown throughout Germany between 1984-1987. He was one of seven German artists of the inaugural exhibition Boñ Angeles supported by Goethe-Institut, Lufthansa, IBM and the City of Los Angeles to open the new Santa Monica Museum of Art. Since then Müller works as a sculptor in Düsseldorf, Germany and Los Angeles, California. 

Recent selected solo and group exhibitions include: Not from Here, ROSEGALLERY, Los Angeles, 2017; Objects Are Closer Than They Appear, Municipal Art Gallery, Los Angeles, CA, 2014; Framing Abstraction: Mark, Symbol, Signifier, Municipal Art Gallery, Los Angeles, CA, 2011; Heliotropo, Galería López Quiroga, Mexico City, Mexico, 2010.


1981: Received Cité des Artes Scholarship, Paris, France;
1983: Received Grand Prize for Fine Arts of the City of Düsseldorf, Germany;
1985: Received scholarship from German Industry Endowment of the Arts. Followed by additional studies in Italy and Egypt.

Selected solo exhibitions

2017 Not From Here, ROSE GALLERY, Santa Monica, CA, USA
2016 New Oxid Yellow Cycle, ROSE GALLERY, Santa Monica, CA, USA
2015 Object Prelude, Lippischer Kunstverein, Detmold, Germany
2014 Federal Avenue, ROSE GALLERY, Santa Monica, CA, USA
2014 Objects Are Closer Than they Appear, Los Angeles, Municipal Art Gallery, Los Angeles, CA, USA
2011, solo exhibition, ML Gallery, Antwerp, Belgium
2010 Heidi Cho Gallery, New York, NY; Heliotropo Galerie Lopez Quiroga, Solo exhibition, Mexico City, MX
2008 Hidden Cache No. 1, ROSEGALLERY, Santa Monica, CA
2007 New Work, Roy Boyd Gallery, Chicago, IL; Works on Paper, ROSEGALLERY, Santa Monica, CA
2006 Mike Karstens Gallery, Münster, Germany
CONTRATO, New work by Manfred Müller, Münster, Germany
Roy Boyd Gallery, Chicago, IL
2003 Human Conditions: Demo- The Body Shop, USC Fisher Gallery, CA
2001 Roy Boyd Gallery, Chicago, IL
1999 Palacio de MemoriaMuseo de Universitario del Chopo, Mexico City
1998 Gallery Hete Hünermann, Düsseldorf, Germany
1997 Sculpture and Drawing, Form Zero Architecture Gallery, Santa Monica, California 
1996 Current work: Sculpture and Paperworks, Roy Boyd Gallery, Chicago, IL
1995 New objects and Sketches, Gallery Hete Hünermann, Düsseldorf
1994 Transformer: A Change of Past Perceptions,Open Space, Victoria, British Columbia, CA; Tunnelvision, Site Gallery, Los Angeles, CA; Transformer: A Change of Past Perceptions, Contemporary Art Forum, Santa Barbara, CA
1993 The Exchange, Gallery Hete Hünermann, Düsseldorf, Germany
1992 Sculptural Events, Mandeville Gallery, UCSD, San Diego, CA
The Lights At The End of the Tunnel, Heidelberger Kuntsverein
1991 New Paperworks,Gallery Jöllenbeck, Cologne, Germany
Cabinettpiece,Gallery Hete Hünermann, Dusseldorf, Germany
1989 Paperobjects, Gallery Carol Johnssen, Munich, Germany
1988 Sculpture for permanent display in public place, commissioned by the Ludwig Museum, Cologne, Germany
Sketches and PaperworksGallery Jöllenbeck, Cologne, Germany
1986 Wallpiece,Gallery Christian Fochem, Krefeld
1985 Gallery Jöllenbeck, Cologne, Germany
Waiting in the Windshade,Wilhelm - Lehmbruck/Museum, Duisberg
1984 City Museum, Düsseldorf, Germany

Selected Group Exhibition

2012 ML Gallery, Garnier, Knokke, Belgium
2011 ML Design Gallery, Antwerp, Belgium
2011 Framing Abstraction, Los Angles, CA, Los Angeles, Municipal Art Gallery
2010 Shopwear, Rose Gallery, Santa Monica, CA
2007 Made in California: Contemporary Art from the Frederick R. Weisman Art Foundation, 15thAnniversary Celebration, Los Angeles, 25 August – 16 December; The Eclectic Eye: Pop and Illusion, Colorado Springs, CO, August- October; LA Art, Art Fair, New York, NY
2006 Frederick Weisman Foundation-LA Art Scene, Municipal Gallery Santa Monica, CA
2005 Roy Boyd Gallery, Art Chicago, Art Fair, Chicago, IL
1993/97 Venice Art Walk,Participant, CA
1996 Works on Paper, Armand Hammer Museum Art & Sales Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
1995 Current LA, Armand Hammer Museum Art & Sales Gallery, Los Angeles, CA; 10 Eurpoean Artists, Roy Boyd Gallery, Chicago, IL
1994 Current AbstractionsMunicipal Art Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
In Reference to the Vessel, Mount St. Mary's College Art Gallery
1993 Peter's Friends,Kunsthalle Düsseldorf
1992 Sculptural Events,Mandeville Gallery, UCSD, San Diego;  Für Karl Ernst Jöllenbeck,Gallery Jöllenbeck, Köln; Small Sculpture, Triennale,Wilhelm Lehmbruck Museum, Duisburg; Triennale Fellbach, Fellbach
1990 Fusion,University Gallery, Wilkes Barres Pennsylvania; Jeune Sculpture,Quai Austerlitz-Paris; Cicero,Kronprinzenstraße, Düsseldorf
1989 Los Angeles,Santa Monica Museum of Art, Santa Monica
1988 Der Zusammenhang der DingeFlottmannhallen, Herne; AuszugsweiseGallery Jöllenbeck, Köln; Meine Zeit - Mein RaubtierKunstpalast, Düsseldorf; UcronosFaux Mouvement, Metz
1987 PaperworksT.G. Art Gallery, Los Angeles, CA; Ucronia SER, MIGPiazza Borgo Dora, Turin; IBM Deutschland, Düsseldorf; Sub aquaPeter-Lauten-Str., Krefeld
1985 Die sich verselbständigenden MöbelWuppertaler Kunstverein; Mitten im WerktagBonner Kunstverein; Dimensionen VKunsthalle Köln; Dimensionen VKunsthalle Berlin; Dimensionen VVilla Stuck, Munchen (1987); Thun NaturellKunstmuseum, Thun; Kranz ohne KönigSüdhaus, Frankfurt/Main
1984 Dimensionen IVNationalgalerie, Berlin; Dimensionen IVHaus der Kunst, München; Dimension IVStädtische Kunsthalle, Düsseldorf; Forum Junger KunstWüttembergischer Kunstverein, Stuttgart; Forum Junger KunstKunsthalle, Mannheim; Forum Junger KunstKunsthalle, Baden-Baden;
Vielleicht fiel viel SchattenRather Straße, Düsseldorf; Drunter und drüber in AortaAorta, Amsterdam
1983 Standort DüsseldorfStädtische Kunsthalle, Düsseldorf; Gallery Jöllenbeck, Köln
1982 Between 9, Bild der AbschreckungStädtische Kunsthalle, Düsseldorf;
Junge Bildhauer in DusseldorfSkulpturenpark Seestern, Dusseldorf
1981 Plastische VersucheRheinisches Landesmuseum, Bonn; Reine Weste, Tote HoseRather Straße, Düsseldorf; Pflüger auf GrundDüsseldorf, Börne Straße; Perspektiven 2Kunstverein NRW, Düsseldorf
1980 Artistes Allemands à ParisGoethe Institut, Paris
1979 Projekt WupperVon-der-Heydt-Museum, Wuppertal; Weißer SaalKunstverein, Bern

Selected Public Artwork

1988 First Prize. Vom Verteilen der Lasten, Sculpture for permanent display in public place, commissioned by the Ludwig Museum, Cologne, Germany

1997 First Prize. Rosso Rotondo. Sculpture for permanent display in city of Münster. Commissioned by the County N.R.W., Germany
1997 Twilight and Yearning, Installation underneath the Santa Monica Pier, Santa Monica, California. Produced and donated by the artist
2000 Ring Red Seventeen Degree, Münster, Germany. University of Münster Public Commission
2002 When a Person Plants a Tree... Installation inaugurating Agoura Hills Civic Center and Library, Agoura Hills, California, USA

Selected Public Collections

Houston’s Restaurant Group, New York, NY, Santa Monica, Ca, USA
IBM, Germany
Bank of America, USA
Deutsche Bank, Germany
Lufthansa German Airlines, Germany
Dresdner Bank, Germany
Commerz Bank, Germany
Ove Arup & Partners, California, USA
McKienze, Germany
Thyssen Steel, Germany
City of Santa Monica Arts Foundation, California, USA
Frederick Weisman Foundation, Los Angeles, USA


- September 16, 2008 KCRW, arttalk, hidden cache review, Edward Goldman;
- October 26, 2007 Chicago Tribune: Manfred Muller at Roy Boyd, Alan Artner;
- October 2007, LA Weekly: Art Pick, Peter Frank;
- Sculpture Magazine, 2007, Image / Text by Marlena Donohue;
- Artist Profile, Art Ltd., West Coast Art and Design, Los Angeles, CA. July 2007 Image/ Text, pp.78-79??- July 3, 2007, "Art Talk," by Edward Goldman, KCRW, 89.9 FM;
- September 16, 2003, "Art Talk," by Edward Goldman, KCRW, 89.9 FM;
- "A Bi-Focal Apercu: The German-American Art of Manfred Müller," by Max F. Schulz,Human Conditions, Exhibition catalog, Published USC Fisher Gallery, 2003;
- Manfred Müller - Any Given Shape, text by Kristine McKenna, Published by Manfred Muller, 2002;
- "Evocative Müller Wall Sculptures," by Alan G. Artner, Chicago Tribune, June 15, 2001;
- "Manfred Müller - Scenic Lyricism" by Jutta Rutz K. Published in conjuction with the solo exhibition: Manfred Muller - Palacio de Memoria, Museo de Universitario del Chopo, Mexico City, 1999
- "Art - home works," by Christopher Nixon, Los Angeles Magazine, November, 1999;
- "Pier Group - Conceptual art that's all wet," by Danny Fiengold, Los Angeles Times Magazine, October 26, 1997;
- "Artist conveys message through color, texture," by Alan G. Artner, Chicago Tribune, August 15, 1996;
- "The Purity laws no longer hold true," by Manfred Schneckenburger, Manfred Müller - Kunstverein Heidelberg, Published byHeidelberger Kunstverein, 1992;
- Manfred Müller - Skulpturen und Rauminszenierungen,text by Annelie Pohlen, Published by Manfred Muller, 1986.