(Wolfgang Ludwig Cihlarz) Salomé



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Born Wolfgang Ludwig Cihlarz in Karlsruhe in 1954. 1973 moved to West Berlin. 1974 to 1980 studied art at the Hochschule der Künste, Berlin, under K. H. Hödicke. 1977 co-founder of the Galerie am Moritzplatz. 1979 co-founder (with Luciano Castelli) of the punk band Geile Tiere. 1983-1984 stay in New York (German Academic Exchange Service stipend). 1987 to 1990 lived in Los Angeles, then from 1990 to 1992 in Hope, Idaho, from 1992 to 1994 in New York, and from 1994 to 1998 in Dalton, Massachusetts. Since 1998 lives and works in Berlin.

Wolfgang Ludwig Cihlarz grew up in a dysfunctional family in Karlsruhe (Baden-Württemberg), West Germany, and completed his training as an architectural draftsman. In 1973 he moved to West Berlin, at the time renowned for its art scene.

There he initially worked as an architectural draftsman for the U.S. Army in Tempelhof and at DETEWE, among others. After passing the entrance exam he enrolled at the Berlin Academy of Art (at the time HfbK – Hochschule für Bildende Kunst, today UdK – Universität der Künste), studying painting with Ulrich Knipsel from 1974 through 1980, later as a student in the master class of Karl Heinz Hödicke.

While a student he temped as a waiter at the clubs “Matalla” and “Dschungel”, as well as in the gay café “Anderes Ufer” (The Other Side). He had met the owner of the latter, Gerhard Hoffmann, in 1974 in the “Homosexuelle Aktion Westberlin” (HAW – Gay Action West Berlin). Hoffmann came up with the pseudonym Salomé in 1974. In “Anderes Ufer” Salomé also met David Bowie, among others, who was at the time enriching the wild Berlin night-life. At this time Salomé was in a relationship with Rainer Fetting.

In 1977 Salomé, together with fellow artists Helmut Middendorf, Bernd Zimmer, Rainer Fetting, Anne Jud, Berthold Schepers, Rolf von Bergmann, and others founded the “Galerie am Moritzplatz” (Gallery at Moritzplatz). Other guests and members joined them later, e.g. Hella Santarossa and Luciano Castelli.

With Luciano Castelli he in 1980 formed the Punk band ”Geile Tiere” (The Horny Animals, new wave music). With wild performances he presented himself in films and radio plays.

In 1980 Salomé was invited to participate in the exhibition “Heftige Malerei” (Wild Paintings) at the Haus am Waldsee, Berlin. That same year he also participated in the exhibition “Les Nouveaux Fauves – Die Neuen Wilden” in Aachen, West Germany. In 1981 he took part in the popular exhibition “Rundschau Deutschland”.

Together with painters like Rainer Fetting, Helmut Middendorf, Bernd Zimmer, Elvira Bach, Luciano Castelli, and Jiri Georg Dokoupil, Salomé now became known as one of the members of the “Wild Style” art group of the Junge Wilde (Wild Youth) or Neue Wilde (New Wild Ones). In 1982, due to the invitation by Rudi Fuchs to participate in the famed international art show “documenta 7” in Kassel (Hesse), West Germany, he had his international break-through.

Salomé began dividing his time between the art metropolises New York and Berlin. He made portraits of numerous VIPs, e.g. the at the time very extravagant Gloria, Princess of Thurn and Taxis, and he was himself portrayed by famous photographers, such as Helmut Newton.

In 1999, after an extended stay in the U.S., he returned to Berlin and reactivated his studio in the space of the former “Galerie am Moritzplatz”.

In cooperation with notable porcelain manufacturers, among others “Philipp Rosenthal” Hutschenreuther, he created painted sculptures and dinner services.

Today Salomé’s paintings can be found in renowned museums and private collections all over the world. Among the best known-series are the colorful “Swimmers” and “Water Lilies”. Apart from that there are series with neutral portraits of celebrities, as well as expressly gay themes.

Recently he has again started to produce his own Pop music CDs and he still occasionally performs as a singer. He participates in benefit events on a regular basis.

Salomé lives and works in Berlin.

Exhibitions (selection)

Heftige Malerei, Gallery Haus am Waldsee, Berlin, Germany, 1980

documenta 7, Kassel, Germany, 1982

Schwimmer, Gallery Raab, Berlin, Germany, 1982

Zeitgeist, Museum Martin-Gropius-Bau, Berlin, Germany, 1982

Biennale Venedig, Venice, Italy, 1982

Von hier aus – Zwei Monate neue deutsche Kunst in Düsseldorf, Duesseldorf, Germany, 1984

BerlinArt 1961–1987, Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA, 1987

BerlinArt 1961–1987, Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, USA, 1987

Refigured Painting in Contemporary German Art, Guggenheim Museum, New York, USA, 1988

Obsessive Malerei – Ein Rückblick auf die Neuen Wilden, Berlin, Germany, 2003/2004

Gladiatoren und Maße, Gallery Deschler, Berlin, Germany, 2006

Wunschbilder, Gallery Deschler, Berlin, Germany, 2008

PUNK – No One Is Innocent, Museum Kunsthalle Wien, Austria, 2008


Salomé by Salomé, Edition Cantz, Stuttgart, Germany, 1992, ISBN 3-89322-451-3

Catalogues (selection)

Heftige Malerei, Gallery Haus am Waldsee, Berlin, Germany, 1980

Im Westen nichts Neues, Museum Kunstmuseum Luzern, Luzern, Switzerland, 1981

Katalog Documenta 7, Kassel, Germany, 1982, ISBN 3-920453-02-6

Zeitgeist, Museum Martin-Gropius-Bau, Berlin, Germany, 1982, ISBN 3-88725-086-9

Artistic Collaboration in the 20th Century, Hirshhorn Museum, Washington/D.C., USA, 1984

The European Iceberg’, Art Gallery of Ontario, Canada, 1984, ISBN 88-202-0599-8

An International Survey of Recent Painting and Sculpture, Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA, 1984

Tiefe Blicke, Dumont Kunstverlag, Cologne, Germany, 1985, ISBN 3-7701-1740-9

Bienal São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil, 1985

Frauen in Deutschland, Gallery Raab, Berlin, Germany, 1986

Zeitgenoessische Kunst in der Deutschen Bank, Frankfurt, Germany, 1987

Berlinart 1961–1987, Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA, 1987, ISBN 3-7913-0821-1

Pictures for the Sky – Kunstdrachen, Goethe Institut, Osaka, Japan, 1988

Kunst der Gegenwart, Klaus Honnef, Verlag Taschen, Cologne, Germany, 1991, ISBN 3-8228-0063-5

Heftige Malerei, Collection Wuerth, Thorbecke Verlag, Sigmaringen, Germany, 1996, ISBN 3-7995-3639-6

Sammlung Wuerth, Swiridoff Verlag, Kuenzelsau, Germany, 2002

Seerosen Variationen, Edition Salomé, Berlin, Germany, 2004

Das Achte Feld, Museum Ludwig, Cologne, Germany, 2006, ISBN 978-3-7757-1829-5

Gladiatoren und Masse, Edition Salomé and Gallery Deschler, Berlin, Germany, 2006

LUST, Edition Salomé, Berlin, Germany, 2006

Wunschbilder, Gallery Deschler, Berlin, 2008