Blog Article: Ernst Gamperl | Art through Craftsmanship

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Photography Mareike Besch

Ernst Gamperl is seeking artistic refinement in the wood he works with, his objects reach beyond sculptural dimensions towards an echo and semblance of nature.

In 2017 he received the prestigious LOEWE Craft Prize for his remarkable carvings that both transcends and respects his deep connection to the ancient craft of woodturning. The German wood turner’s approach to his work is unique. The way he works with rather than on the material, in harmony and respect with its inherent properties is what gives his finished work the qualities that have brought him international recognition within the art world since 1992.

Master craftsmanship – understanding the essence of a material

In working in dialogue with the material and allowing the wood to unfold through his craft, Ernst’s results are magnetic; they capture a deep connection with nature. 

To achieve this he must understand the essence of the wood he is going to work with. “Every log requires a unique way of treatment”, says Ernst, to him, understanding the wood’s potential is the most important skill in the process. Recognising the raw material – its grain growth and structure, cluster growth around the branches and folds and how the branches fork from the trunk all fundamentally determine the outcome of the final object.