Sabina Bockemühl: Strong Women – Strong Colours
Works, Work & VitaVita


The works of Sabina Bockemühl tell of lively stories of strong personalities. Born in Solingen in 1966, the artist creates impressive portraits of women using a unique technique. Whether Alice Schwarzer or Frida Kahlo: Sabina Bockemühl’s paintings radiate a special strength. The artist works with a special overlapping of canvas on canvas.

This gives the large-format works a three-dimensionality and a special feel and depth. Despite the intense colourfulness of the pictures, there is always something thoughtfully profound in them. With a great deal of sensitivity and emotionality, Bockemühl tells strong stories that have an impressive effect on the viewer. There are virtually no early works in her possession, as older works are always being painted over and undergo further development. About her method, Sabina Bockemühl says: “I also sometimes rework my paintings with different themes. Often, I also cut them up in order to incorporate them again into new works. In this way, the themes connect with each other. Everything belongs together”.


Already at an early age, the artist came into contact with the world of art. Her father, the painter, musician and glass artist Hans Jürgen Richartz, and the art teacher and gallery owner Georg W. Michels were among her first patrons. After graduating from high school, she devoted herself entirely to painting.


A woman of soft tones and a strong sense for colours
Bockemühl completed her training in Düsseldorf, Trier, Münster and Barcelona – among others with Prof. Markus Lüpertz. Her studies in portrait painting in 1990/91 – with the well-known sculptor and portrait painter Ricci von Riggenbach – form the basis of her work today. Study visits to the USA and Spain and her station with designer Dieter Sieger at Schloss Harkotten in Münsterland shaped her work, as well as training in mural painting, trompe l’oeil and façade painting. Sabina Bockemühl founded her first studio in 1990 and has been working in Murnau am Staffelsee since 2002. There she runs an art school in the “Yellow House”. She finds further inspiration at her father’s studio on Mallorca. Sabina Bockemühl is a member of the BBK, the professional association of visual artists, first in Wuppertal and since 1997 in Munich. Her works have already been shown in numerous exhibitions in Germany and abroad.
Hot Cows and Pop Art
Developing the familiar and telling new stories in the process: This could be the subtitle to Sabina Bockemühl’s works. Space and time, the existence of man and nature are the essential themes in her art. Her artistic orientation was consolidated during her art training in Düsseldorf, Trier, Münster and Barcelona, among other places. The closeness to nature of her childhood, which she spent partly in the Bavarian forest, played a decisive role in her development. Snapshots and moods are processed in colour-intensive motifs that show people and animals such as hot cows.

Yet her large-scale works – which combine a neo-expressionist style with Pop Art influences – are never one-dimensional. Whatever the motif, Sabina Bockemühl mixes themes so that the complexity of life is expressed out of something familiar. She shows in an impressive way that mainstream and the magic of art are not contradictory.

The canvas as object: The work
Powerful colours on large-format canvases: The works of Sabina Bockemühl gain from the special working technique. “Through the light-dark contrast of the colours, which the artist consciously applies in many layers, the canvas gains something tactile, a velvety expression of gently modelled light. In particular, the spatulaed painting structure and the coordinated colours make each individual painting appear in its entirety,” writes art historian Dr Barbara Aust-Wegemund.


The canvas is not used as a surface but as an object. Bockemühl works out plastic colour structures in such a way that a presence typical of the artist is created. The moods thus created can create tranquility and equilibrium as well as cheerfulness and carefreeness. In this way, compositions are created that allow for personal associations, although all works bear her unique signature.

Murnau, October 2016

Works, Work & Vita as Download
A portrait by Dr Barbara Aust-Wegemund as Download