Born 1928 in Hamburg, Germany , Arthur ("Addi") Köpcke was, for the most part, a self taught artist. In the post- war era in Hamburg, Köpcke spent his time on painting and literature, focusing on his written work. He re- settled in Copenhagen at the end of 1957 where he founded Gallery Köpcke, with his Danish wife, Aase ("Tut"). Within the five years of its existence, the gallery became a contact point for international avante- garde art (Informel, Nouveau Realisme and Fluxus) in Denmark, a country that had until then been on the peripheries of the art scene. Artists such as Filliou, Manzoni, Roth, de Saint Phalle, Spoerri and Williams held some of their first exhibitions through Köpcke in Sweden. During this time, Köpcke played an interesting dual role as both art mediator and artist. His period as an action artist began in 1962 (October/ November) with the "Festival of Misfits" in London. It was Köpcke who brought Fluxus to Denmark. Due to his involvement and the connection to George Maciunas that he had established through his artists, "Festum Fluxorum" was held at the Nikolaj Kirke in Copenhagen in November 1962. Up until the mid-60s, Köpcke particiated in most of the main festivals of the Fluxus tour through Europe (Paris, Düsseldorf, Amsterdam, Scheveningen, Aachen etc.). At the Fluxus event that took place in Denmark during the 60s, Köpcke was involved with, amongst others, Eric Anderson and Henning Christiansen. In 1970, Köpcke’s Fluxus piece Music while you work stood at the center of "Festum Fluxorum", organized by the Block Gallery in the Berlin Forumtheater. From 1972-1973, Köpcke was a guest professor at the Royal Academy of Art in Copenhagen. Köpcke’s extensive range of work includes paintings, scrolls, literary works, objects, collages, assemblies and fluxus pieces. His key piece reading/ work pieces-manuscript was created between 1963 and 1965. Köpcke died in Copenhagen, in 1977.
Text courtesy Barbara Wien.
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