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Grosser Mann (Large Man)
© DACS 2015

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Grosser Mann (Large Man) 1988

Not on display

This large wooden figure is over ten feet in height and was carved from a single tree trunk. Despite his imposing size, the man looks distinctly non-heroic, his stance suggesting boredom or that he is waiting for something to happen. Balkenhol uses a chainsaw roughly to carve his large figures; he then defines the details with a chisel before painting. Although Balkenhol works in the tradition of Expressionist wood carving, his work can also be associated with the work of the contemporary artist Georg Baselitz. Parallels have also been drawn between Balkenhol's neutral, post-heroic figures and the giant, rhetorical statues beloved by totalitarian regimes.

Glossary Open


A style that made an impact in the arts in the 1920s, particularly in Germany. Expressionists deliberately abandoned realistic representation techniques in favour of exaggerations and distortions of line and colour that were intended to carry far greater emotional impact.



  • Acc. No. GMA 4254
  • Medium Bubinga wood, paint and wood stain
  • Size 331.50 x 157.00 x 48.00 cm
  • Credit Purchased 1999