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 Heinz Gaugel  (1927 - )

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Lived/Active: Ohio/Ontario / Canada/Germany      Known for: easel painting, ceramics, stained glass and murals

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This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Heinz Gaugel was born in 1927 in the village of Eybach in the Swabian Alps region of southern Germany.  A self-taught artist, Heinz moved to Canada in 1951 where he began his artistic career.  His works include oils on canvas, ceramics, stained glass, fresco, and sgraffito.  He created monumental works in churches, public spaces and private buildings.

Heinz entered Holmes County, Ohio, in 1962 for the first time, seeking glazed brick for his mural project in Ontario, Canada.  Heinz became fascinated with the Amish because they speak a German dialect similar to his own, live a unique lifestyle, and believe strongly in non-violence.  Heinz was almost killed in World War II and had come to believe in the futility of war and violence.

Heinz moved onto a farm in Holmes County in 1972 to work on various art projects in the area.

In 1978 an Amish blacksmith related to Heinz his frustration at constant questions by tourists.

"I wish there were some place where people could go and find out about why we live the way we do."

Heinz replied, "Brother, tomorrow I will begin working towards that end."

Heinz committed to research the history of the Anabaptists, and painting the BEHALT CYCLORAMA, completed in October 1992.

Behalt comes from the word 'behalten', meaning "to keep," "to remember".

The BEHALT CYCLORAMA has become known as "The Sistine Chapel of the Amish and Mennonites."

The BEHALT CYCLORAMA (10 x 265=2,650 square feet) which depicts the history of Amish, Mennonites and Hutterites, is located at the Amish & Mennonite Heritage center, 5798 Country Road 77, Box 324, Berlin, Ohio 44610

Information submitted by Gene Meier

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