Being an artist can be a difficult career path; in fact, some creative individuals never sell any work. Yet sculptor Hans Van de Bovenkamp is an exception to the rule. A master of abstract forms, Hans has work displayed all over the world and a studio in South Hampton, New York, that essentially doubles as a private #Sculpture garden. An avid animal lover, Hans' studio is both his home and a farm that includes horses, chickens, koi fish and more. When coupled with the huge and colorful sculptures dotting the lushly gardened and tree-lined landscape, the studio resembles a magical realm of fantasy and beauty.
Born and raised in Holland, Hans was the son of two schoolteachers.
As a boy, he designed his furniture for his room. His family relocated to Canada when Hans was a teenager. In 1958, at age 20, he moved to the United States and studied art at Michigan State; his first exhibition was at the college gallery in 1961. After graduation, Hans had the opportunity to showcase his work around the USA and garnered his first solo show in 1962. In the 1960s, Hans relocated to New York City and made a living designing functional items such as lamps and fountains and selling them at street fairs. His work was recognized and he was given the opportunity to develop fountain-like window displays for Tiffany's on Fifth Avenue. His whimsical water designs were massively successful and, by 1967, Hans was manufacturing fountains via a Christopher Street studio where he had fifteen assistants--David Yurman among them.
In fact, David met his wife, painter Sybil Kleinrock, in Hans' office where she was working as a secretary. Hans’ work quickly gained popularity in NYC and his sculptures appeared in famous locations such as Bryant Park.
After founding an #Artist's organization called "New York's 10 Downtown Project" he received a commission to design a copper fountain for the Georgetown Plaza in Manhattan. In 1968, he had his first international show when he exhibited a small sculpture in his native Holland. In 1976, he was also commissioned to create a massive 40-foot-tall sculpture on a highway stop along Nebraska's Interstate 80 in order to commemorate the United States Bicentennial.
Hans' work is now included in major permanent collections at locations all over the world including Stony Brook University, Texas A&M, Jing’an Park in Shanghai, Mt. Sinai Hospital in Miami, the Lowe Art Museum in Miami, the Butler Institute of American Art and the Boca Raton Museum of Art. Additionally, Hans' art is included in many private collections such as The Tisch Family, Lois and Susan Meisel, Diane and Tom Tuft and the corporate collections of WR Grace Building NYC, Neiman Marcus, the Georgetown Plaza Building, Hyatt Regency Paris and the Manhattan House.
His art can also be viewed in the Grounds for Sculpture in New Jersey, the Danubiana Meulensteen Museum in Slovakia, the Texas Contemporary Arts Museum, the Stamford Museum and Sarasota Marine Park, among others.
He has also served on the advisory board of the Omega Institute for Holistic Studies and the Institute for Symbolic Studies. He is currently represented by five galleries and has exhibits forthcoming globally. He is increasingly going back to his early design roots and is now in the process of designing larger fountains, abstract metal gates, a jewelry line and patterns for housewares and linens. He has also started to focus more on painting using vibrant hues and playful shapes. “Seeing people enjoy my work is incredibly rewarding,” Hans stated. “Artists understand that our work has value that goes beyond the monetary and I like seeing my work promote positive feelings in others.” Han presently has a solo show at the Alfsted Art Gallery in Sarasota, Florida, that features a number of his paintings and sculptures. More #Exhibitions are planned for 2017.