Martin Spengler is interested in structures and systems of order in nature, society and architecture "that reflect a specific social event or architectural function". His reliefs and sculptures made of corrugated cardboard emphasise the fragility of these orders through deliberate breaks, which he calls "predetermined breaking points".
He uses image files and his own sketches, which he transfers to corrugated cardboard blocks, as models for his depictions of moving water surfaces, breaking waves, a group of people during a la-ola wave, contemporary urban architecture, individual skyscrapers, façades, towers or Gothic cathedrals. With scalpel-like knives, he carves the motifs along the drawing into the corrugated cardboard, which he then soaks with glue. When this has dried, he covers the picture side of the work with gesso, a kind of chalk paint, and highlights the contours with graphite.
The complex and long production process, the visual dynamics and the ornamental dimension of Martin Spengler's works are recognisable at first glance and unique in the current art landscape.
Martin Spengler studied painting in Bremen with Karin Kneffel from 2003-08, was in the sculpture class of Manfred Pernice at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna in 2006-07 as part of an Erasmus study year and went to the Academy in Munich in 2008-10, where he was a master student and assistant to Karin Kneffel.
Spengler has received numerous awards and prizes, such as the Cusanuswerk study grant in 2005 and two studio grants each from the City of Munich and the State of Bavaria since 2012. In 2018, he was presented with a funding bunk as part of the "New Positions" at Art Cologne.
His works have been presented in numerous museums, institutions and galleries since 2005, including the National Gallery in Prague, the Kunsthalle Emden, the Leopold-Hoesch-Museum in Düren and the Gustav-Lübcke-Museum in Hamm. The Museum Bensheim (2021) and the Böblinger Kunstverein (2022) recently dedicated highly acclaimed solo exhibitions to him.
Currently, his works can be seen in exhibitions at the Museum Heidenheim and the Museum Fürstenfeldbruck.