Gerhart Bergmann was born in Erfurt (1922-2007).  His father, who was a schoolteacher, encouraged his son to study to become a pharmacist.  The onset of World War II changed those plans.  Bergmann was drafted in 1939 and suffered severe knee injury in 1940.  After lengthy hospital stays, then living in Dresden, he was able to attend the Art Academy from 1943 until the allied bombings of February 1945.  In the epic-scale destruction of Dresden, Bergmann lost all his work.  A few months later he relocated to Berlin to study at the Universität der Künste with Max Pechstein.  After graduating he left for Paris in 1952, studying on a one year scholarship in Fernand Léger's studio.  Upon his return to Berlin, Bergmann made his way in the art scene.  This culminated in his appointment in 1961 as a professor in painting and graphics at the Hochschule für bildende Künste, which would become the Hochschule der Künste Berlin (HdK) in 1975 (today called the Universität der Künste, UdK).  He retired in 1990.

Bergman was an avid traveler, venturing as far as India, Thailand and Japan, but also a frequent visitor to Italy (especially the island of Elba), France, Denmark and Switzerland.  Whiles most of his painting is abstract, colors and shapes of landscapes experienced during these travels, can be detected by the keen eye.  In later years, the broad skies of Schleswig-Holstein landscapes, where Bergmann acquired a house in Dithmarschen, also became a strong influence in his work.

In his prints, Bergmann showed a predilection for still lives, depicting vignettes of everyday life, in which food and drink, branches and plants, playing cards or cigarettes punctuate peaceful slices of life.  While his work tends toward an academic execution, it also exudes a sense of quiet contentment, which contrasts with the many vicissitudes Bergmann’s life certainly must have contained.

Gerhart Bergmann - Zum Traumen - clematis - vine trumpet flower - sewing cigarettes - detail

To Dream


Zum Träumen (original German title) Color aquatint and etching on wove paper.Edition of 50.Signed, titled and numbered in pencil.

Gerhart Bergmann - Sudliches - Meridional - From the South - lemon olive branch - detail



Südliches (original German title) Color aquatint and etching on wove paper.Edition of 50.Signed, titled and numbered in pencil.