My work is about freedom in the first place. There’s a strong link with music. Just like music my art is about autonomy, licentiousness, passion, color and rhythm.

I use everything I can get my hands on: acrylic paint, oil paint, ink, pencils, crayons, spraycans etc. Sometimes I mix the paint with sand, sawdust or pieces of paper. I paint on canvas and paper and sometimes other materials like wood.
I work in different sizes: from very small to real big and I don’t limit myself to one medium. I draw, I paint, I make 3-dimensional objects and artist books (and audio art)

I collaborated with many different, authors, poets, visual artists and audio artists from around the world. My work was published by (ao): Alien Buddha Press, Marathon Books, Holy & Intoxicated Publications, Rhovum Press, Rust Belt Press, Cajun Mutt Press, petrichor uitgeverij, Whiskey City Press, Pski’s Porch Publishing, Stik Magazine, Knust Press,  Poetic Justice Books and Arts, Outsider Art Magazine, Proper Gander, Bananafish, Gonzo Circus, Rogue Wolf Press, Egalitarian Publishing Ltd, Impspired, UnCollected Press, Black Shamrock Press, Black Flowers Press.

reactions

“Marcel Herms channels nightmares, he sees the inside of souls and the landscape of beauty and terror in equal measure. His images are stark and powerful like an IED explosion, still there is sadness and pain in even the most terrifying of his faces. His art tells a story we all experience but try to hide and that is exactly why it resonates with everyone who sees it. He paints the skeletons in all our closets!!”  (Matt Borczon)

“Very seldom do you come across a true master of his craft.  Marcel Herms is amazingly talented and insanely prolific.  His work is so visceral and alive and expressive and yet beautifully minimalist in approach at the same time.  Each image a darkly emotive moment of human expression and endurance that confronts the viewer with a haunting brilliance.   To my knowledge, there is no one out there today doing anything close to what Marcel Herms is doing.  His stunning artwork is simply unmatched.” (Ryan Quinn Flanagan)

“Marcel Herms’ artwork is like a lucid psilocybin dream vivid enough to linger in your frontal cortex days after being consumed by the retinas. Imagine psychological ink splotches being brought alive by Dr. Frankenstein and running rampant. Complexity becomes impossibly simplified, and the depth of matter bleeds abstract madness all over the canvas.” (Red Focks)

That Marcel Herms is a special artist is evident from his more than exciting paintings, drawings, objects, graphic work, artist’s books and even audio-art. His music-related works are raw, powerful and often bizarre. But his work is always quirky. And it is these combinations that are noticed far beyond the borders, as  appears from many collaborations with artists all over the world. ” (Martin Knaapen)

“Herms’s work is colorful and tonal, gloomy and cheerful at the same time. The figures in his paintings are heavily abstracted, making it unclear what they are doing. Sometimes it looks like people, monsters, children or animals, or something in between. The paintings put the viewer to work, partly reinforced by the solid titles that Herms gives his paintings. ” (Renze Koenes)

“Marcel’s work is unique: original: it cannot be compared to anything else: when you see a work by Marcel: be it a painting/drawing/sculpture/combinations: you know instantly and instinctively that the work is Marcel’s: he has a creative energy and spirit that very few possess: the application of colour and of images appear to be wild and free-flowing but there is a serenity to be found in much of his work: the echoes’ and shadows of compassion and humanity are very much alive in Marcel’s work: outstanding: captivating: mysterious: the work never fails to impress itself upon the viewer: a genius, in my very humble opinion, is someone that can recreate works of quality again and again and each time there is something fresh and enlivening: sad and scary: Marcel creates life, a life that is part of us all.” (John D. Robinson)

“(…) Marcel Herms offers, in his inimitable style, squiggles and collages of language and imagery abstract and visceral. Wild imaginative stuff. Ink spots, splatters, splotches, used in a chiaroscuro of tonal values in the interstices between menageries of oftentimes gruesome anthropomorphized creatures: black-eyed dough boys sometimes innocent-looking, sometimes sinister; black figures looking like survivors of The Bomb; KKK freak-a-zoids and mutant cartoon characters with webbed feet; teeth, noses, and mouths askew…Jackasses and frog-creatures with stick arms and legs…Drawn in de Kooning-like smears; work oftentimes reminiscent of Pollock’s psychoanalytic drawings…Ralph Steadman meets Miro. Art-brut with a nod to DaDa. Drawings that, unfailingly, surprise and delight.” (Wayne F. Burke)

“Marcel Herms’ work is instantly recognizable. His non-commercial no-bullshit vision has become an authentic flag more and more authors rightly wish to fly. (…)” (Kevin Tosca)

“(…) Herms’ technique is equal parts simplistic and meticulous. A true visual dichotomy. A battle wages within each image; fine lines that look like chicken scratches and smeared thicker streaks, constantly compete for dominance. Yet, simultaneously, the two elements work in perfect union, flawlessly blending to create true macabre. There is a childlike innocence at work, elements of some sketches not all that different than what could be found on an elementary school bulletin board. But beware! Fear and trauma have polluted these snapshots. They are twisted, deformed and decaying. (…)” ( Corenski Nowlan in The East Mag)

“(…) the (…) feeling of drug-induced spontaneity (…). Violent smears of ink and paint come together in often uncomfortable scenarios (…) to create expressionistic scenes of boredom, alienation, isolation, fear, and violence. (…)”(PANISCUS REVUE)

“Messy, splattered, collaged, schizophrenic, demented and utterly totally beautiful.” (Psionic Plastic Joy #8)

“Bizarre, intricate, ornate, yet sloppy, (…) frenetic outbursts. (…) Drawings are splatters of blue, black, green and red. But the distorted and the grotesque are controlled, artful. An oddly precise outpouring of Euro-angst. (…) worth checking out.” (Broken Pencil #19)

“Put on a good piece of rock. Dance. That’s it, you’re at the heart of Marcel Herms’ work.
In jerks, characters revolve around you, disappear to be replaced immediately.You hear the rhythm of the colors, the beat of the brush strokes, the raging cry of the pencil, the subtle melody of a collage. The prolific artist is involved in all fights, constituting his unique and coherent work to different formats, on  cardboards canvas and paper …
As artist and multi-instrumentalist, he participates in numerous collaborations for books, magazines, and other publications.
Enough to add lyrics to his music… “ (Philippe Beros/Konfini Zine)

“(…) This artist has a unique style that is both beautiful and grotesque at the same time, using strong repetitive images and themes to deliver surreal and dreamlike paintings.(…)” (Hastings Independent)

Selected bibliography

Het Moet Onverstaanbaar 1,2 3

Burn, Knit & Erase (with Monobrain)

Screw, Crash & Explode (with Monobrain)

Port of Souls (with Paul Brookes)

Masks are not enough (with 10 poets)

Masks still aren’t enough (with 10 poets)

Masks are never enough (with 10 poets)

Belly Laughs & other poems for children (with Chelsea Bergeron)

Manifestations of the Deceased (with Stefan Bohdan)

Scary Van Man (with Alfred Gremsley)

Only Greek Gods Should Be Worshipped From Behind (with Ryan Quinn Flanagan)

Past The Savages (with Kari Rhyan)

Ghost Highway Blues (with Matthew Borczon)

Ubique Daemon

I woke up unflappably counterfeited (with Crank Sturgeon)

Lacklustre:The Meanderings of Mole-Man Jack (with Hex’m J’ai)

(you’re the) Bone Machine

Spirits for Sale (with Jordan Trethewey)

every time you die (with Erik Fuhrer)

Stubborn Sod (with Paul Brookes)

No Sin anthology (with 23 authors)

Elemental (with Hex’m J’ai)

They are supposed to be my dreams

Chute (with Sietse Hoeksma)

Then The World Changed (with Henry Bladon)

Psychobabble and Snake Oil (with Henry Bladon)

The Barbed & the Beautiful (with John D. Robinson)

The Black Editions #1 – Victims (with Pete Donohue)

Nederlands Engels