Hermann Scherer | the artist

The artist Hermann Scherer
Born 8 Febr 1893, Basel, Switzerland.
Died 13 May 1927 Switzerland.

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Hermann Scherer
The sculptor, painter and woodcutter Hermann Scherer was born in Rümmingen in the Black Forest in 1893. After he had finished school he began a stone mason training in Basel. At the age of 21 he became a student of the Swiss sculptor Otto Roos and was the assistant of Carl Burckhardt from 1918 to 1921. His first academically coined classicist sculptures, which make for the main part of his early oeuvre, originate from those days…

Hermann Scherer
This sculpture of a mother and child was carved by Swiss artist Hermann Scherer in 1926. From the colors the artist chose for his subjects to the unusual position of the figures, this work challenges the viewer. There is certainly nothing endearing about the almost prop-like way in which the woman holds the child.
His inspiration was the work of German Expressionist artist Ernst Ludwig Kirchner. Scherer visited him when Kirchner moved to the Swiss mountain town of Davos after the First World War. The two men shared an interest in carving wood, which is clearly visible in these figures’ massive, simplified forms.

Hermann Scherer
In the 1920s Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, who lived in Davos from 1917 up until his death in 1938, inspired a group of young Basel artists to further develop there own expressive style. Along with the painter Albert Müller, the sculptor Hermann Scherer proved to be particularly talented; although few in number, his colourfully painted wooden figures are among the most significant carvings of the Expressionist period. The Lamentation of the Dead (Totenklage), in which he fuses his own experience with art-historical memories, may be considered his main work. Here Grünewalds Mary Magdalen at the Feet of the Crucified Jesus and the Pietà of Mary with the Dead Christ are united into a modern work of devotion…

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