Prof. Heiner  Zimmermann

Prof. Heiner Zimmermann

University Gothenburg Sweden


The fourth dimension of objects is the relationship you build with them. The relationship beyond the material value or the appreciation for the functional use. The relationship you build over time and use, so it feels like a natural extension of your body. When it becomes a part of your identity.

Think of your favourite cup in the morning, or of your old worn T-Shirt you cannot throw away, or that dustpan you allways used.

My work displays shovels of people that used them, until I asked them to give them to me. They are more than shovels; they are a small part of people’s identity. 


Being a blacksmith in third generation you grow up with a lot of craft tradition and history. Working with architectural and sculptural forge work, Tools making was a part of my daily practise. Much later in my career I did discover what tools offer beyond their functional use. For the past years I focus to investigate what tools represent in society beyond the obvious values.


Heiner Zimmermann is an ambassador of his craft. Growing up in his father's forge, he soon learned and appreciated ancient techniques and traditions with hammer and anvil. Heiner stepped into big shoes and is now, like his father Paul, counted among renowned designers and artists worldwide. He finished his formal training 1991 as the national champion and was awarded with the "Good Design Award" (now known as "Design Prize of the Federal Republic of Germany"). Other awards followed. 

During his formative years, supported by several scholarships, he travelled and worked for renowned metal artist across the continent and in the United States. Further training in conservation, art and architecture history followed in Venice. After his master's certificate in 1998, he took over his father's forge in Pliezhausen. 

Heiner Zimmermann's works are always the result of a search for form, structure and surface that touch and moves the spectator. His works respect material and forging tradition without neglecting demands of the contemporary design. From an individual creation process comes unique work, the development history symbolizes the union of an idea and will through the material iron. 

Since 2009 Heiner Zimmermann holds a Professorship in Metal Art at HDK University of Gothenburg in Sweden.

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