Dutchman herman de vries (*1931) is the natural philosopher among artists.
Already strongly interested in plants as a child, he became a botanist and worked in research until 1969. Since the 1950s, he has been intensively involved in the fine arts, philosophy and poetry. He was convinced that science alone could not lead man to the wonder of being, to the revelations of nature.
Rejecting expressive informal painting, herman de vries joined the artists of the ZERO group and Concrete Poetry in the 1960s. These artists made the basic elements of visual communication their pictorial theme. Chance plays a central role for de vries. Just as evolution in nature owes the chance of eternal change to the principle of chance, a pattern unfolds infinite variety in series determined by chance.
His credo "nature is art" and "my poetry is the world" is expressed by herman de vries in long series of meticulously arranged and lovingly preserved realia, often documented by drawings or photographs. It is his very own "union of art and reality," marked by deep spirituality. The latter simply encompasses everything: from the falling leaves of a tree to the entirety of a city in Laos.