Gernot Huber, who recently passed away in Germany at the age of 92, has left one of the most recognized sculpture parks in the world in Tenerife, which since 2014 has managed a Foundation that will now manage Ina Huber-Stomberg, his second wife, with whom he created in 1987 the large park located in Los Cardones, between San Isidro and Granadilla, on a farm of 80,000 square meters. Precisely today it reopens to the public with the classic open house that takes place every second Sunday from November to April, the same as in Hamburg in summer with the other park that bears its stamp.
The German patron and sculptor set himself as a personal goal not only to fill the parks with his own creations but also to grant scholarships to young international talents to carry out their majestic works in the parks, in such a way that today in the Gernot Huber Park in Granadilla we can find more than a hundred sculptures that coexist in a chasnero landscape full of tabaibas and cardones.
After successfully completing his professional life, which he developed as a painter, lithographer and graphic designer, he was able to fully dedicate himself to sculpture. Leaving numerous creations in Germany and Tenerife. In both parks he took great care to integrate art and architecture with local nature.
In 1997 Gernot Huber transferred all his property to the Gernot Huber-Stiftung in Germany and in 2014 the Tenerife sculpture park was transferred to the Fundación Canaria Gernot Huber. The two foundations are managed exclusively with the personal assets of Gernot Huber. Ina Huber-Stomberg is in charge of continuing to lead the two foundations, maintaining and expanding their legacy together with her son Alexander Stomberg who acts as a bridge between the German and Canarian foundation.
Huber had a full life almost until the end of it, making his last sculpture in Tenerife, at the age of 91, which he called Make America Great Again, a pyramid made with 50 steel mirrors and inside which the magic eye rotates with the help of the wind.
The symbiosis between art, wild nature, architecture and respect for the environment in order to conserve and preserve for future generations a unique cultural legacy in the world, could summarize the spirit with which the sculpture park of Los Cardones, with a landscape dotted with sculptures, some of them monumental, made with materials typical of the island, such as stone (white edges) and wood and, in some cases, steel and glass. All the designs presented are interconnected by a network of roads that is more than 2,000 meters long, which is located in full harmony with the environment and which facilitate the placid transit of visitors.
The works are located around the founder’s residence built with volcanic tuff that, according to the owner’s design, combines the old Canarian style of construction with modern life and work, in the midst of wild nature on a volcanic hill among vegetation and from where you can see the Teide and the Red Mountain.
Many of the sculptures are kinetic, so they are moved by the wind, a spectacular way of developing art, similar to the mobiles of the late César Manrique.
The founders, Gernot and Ina Hubert, set up this cultural foundation with the purpose of promoting art and culture to young artists through scholarships in order to keep alive the legacy of a non-profit organization, “and so it will continue being, ”recalled Ina Huber-Stomberg.
The Canarian Gernot Huber Foundation grants work scholarships especially between November and April in Tenerife, and sculptors can apply for them within 10 years of completing their higher studies. The scholarship includes the costs of travel, the stay at the Foundation residence, all the materials necessary for the completion of the sculpture and the related logistics, an economic aid of 2,000 euros and, in addition, a week’s vacation on the Island. The duration of the scholarship depends on the planned work time plus the exploration time of the Island.
Renowned graphic designer and publicist
Gernot Huber was born in 1929 in Tübingen, Germany, and has lived on the road between Tenerife and Hamburg since the nineties. After high school, he studied painting, lithography, graphic arts and advertising in Munich.
Starting in 1953, he worked as a graphic, industrial and window dressing designer for the large firms in Europe -among them Philips-; In 1960 he founded his own advertising and exhibition production agency in Hamburg – Werbeforum Gernot Huber – and since 1969 he developed Corporate Identities all over the world. In 1970 he was a visiting university professor of industrial design. In 1990 he began to dedicate himself entirely to sculpture.
In 1997 he created the Gernot Huber Foundation (Gernot Huber-Stiftung) and in 2014, together with his wife, Ina Huber-Stomberg, the Gernot Huber Canary Islands Foundation. Since then, it has supported the new generations of sculptors with scholarships. It should be noted that they gave their name to the street that runs from the TF-64 road, in San Isidro, to the sculpture park, “something that in Germany is only done to the dead,” he told us a few years ago with a smile. .
In October 2001, his first book, Kunst zwischen Kiefern und Kakteen (Art between pines and cacti), appeared in Edition Braus, the second edition of which appeared in 2015. The volume addresses what puzzles most art lovers: that a dominant group of media-influenced art rhetoricians idealize the nonsense (humorous genre) to the point of taking it to the category of art, an art that is no longer understood as such. In 2016 he published Äsculap im Ammertal, dedicated to his father, Theo Huber, a doctor who lived through the two great world wars.
“He had a movie life” says his widow
“Gernot died happy, he had a movie life”, recognizes Ina Huber-Stomberg, the second wife of the late creator of the sculpture park that bears his name in Los Cardones, in Granadilla, since 1987, although it was not until 2014 that it was know as a foundation, similar to the one run by the Huber family in Hamburg, and which the widow will now manage together with her son Alexander, raised since he was a child in the Canary Islands and especially in La Gomera. Ina acknowledges that “now I am a little overwhelmed with paperwork, but I will continue to maintain the same spirit of patronage as Gernot, granting scholarships to sculptors from all over the world to work and leave their work here, with special hope that canaries come, because they have a great talent ”, he affirmed.
In the same way, Ina will continue to maintain the park’s open house program every second Sunday of the month from today until April, something similar to what is then done from May to October in the park located in Hamburg, Gernot’s hometown Huber.
Another way to visit the Los Cardones farm and its hundreds of sculptures is by making an appointment through the park’s website for small groups with a guide.