By his own admission, Hans-Jürgen Bröckl made his own way through the Renaissance and the art of drawing in the 19th century. Many of his pictures take up the great themes of art history, sometimes in open quotation and other times in stealthy alliteration. That has always been legitimate: our artist knows the greats of the past and present very well and can be measured by them.
Because “a work of art is an organ of the spirit”, as the theologian Romano Guardini, who is highly esteemed by Hans-Jürgen Bröckl, wrote, knowledge of the history of art and intellectual history is the basis on which the artist himself stands and continues to paint with inspiration.
“In this way I toil at the whirring loom of time, and work the living garment of God.” This sentence from Goethe’s Faust I describes the self-image of Bröckl, who knows the whole of Faust almost by heart and claims to have also understood Faust Part II. What else is an artist but “the wonderful (beloved) son of chaos”.
Hans-Jürgen Bröckl’s admirable reading ranges from the Bible to contemporary luminaries. With the lighter brush he paints over the big questions of human existence and calls this the “happiness of the phantasms”.