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Detlef "Dego" Gotzens

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Cologne, Germany

Birth year

Lives in

Works in


Glass College Rheinbach, Germany, 1977, Masters

Representing galleries
Galerie Elena lee Montreal, Denison Galerie Toronto, ARTA Gallery Toronto, Carmel Art Gallery Ottawa, Art11 Montreal

installation, mixed-media, sculpture, abstract, painting, architectural art glass, public art installation, contemporary art glass



“Dego” (Detlef Gotzens)

Born in 1952 in Cologne Germany, Detlef showed from an early age on that he was inclined towards an artistic career in Life.

At the age of fifteen he became an apprentice in the stained glass studio of Jacob Melchior in Cologne where he completed his three year apprenticeship. During that time he was exposed to some of the best known Artist in Germany and abroad, executing their projects which only confirmed his desire to pursue art for the rest of his Life.

After receiving his Journeyman certificate and working in the field for five years Detlef continued to complete his education with Master’s degree from the guild of Cologne and at the same time studied glass technology and design for two full years at the famous Glass College in Rheinbach close to the former German Capital Bonn. He graduated with a Masters degree in 1977.

During all this time Detlef never stopped and continued to paint and draw besides designing glass, after his graduation he participated in various group exhibitions’ as well as solo shows between Cologne and Duesseldorf. He also spends a lot of time traveling throughout Europe absorbing art and architecture from the various cultures, until in1985 after a first visit to Relatives in 1982 he decided to immigrate to Canada.

He and his wife settled in Montreal and immediately started to work for a local studio, but after just 5 month opened their own atelier. One of his first commissions was to restore a window at the St. Josephs Oratorio that was partially destroyed after a fire. In the following Years Detlef by then started to sign his original art work “Dego” and continuing to work on many high profile restoration projects from Montreal to Ottawa for example Christ Church Cathedral, St. James the Apostle, St. Patrick’s Basilica in Montreal and the Peace tower windows at the Parliament Building in Ottawa, Notre Dame Cathedral, St. Patrick’s Basilica and St. Anthony’s Church, all located in Ottawa. At the same time he worked on numerous private and commercial art glass commissions in many different techniques that contributed to his reputation as a versatile and innovative artist. Many articles in various Papers and other publications have been written over the years and continue to date.

In 2004 he won an art competition to design 5 large windows for the Cultural Center in Huntingdon Quebec and these windows where published in the American Glass Art Magazine in 2007, and one of them with the Title "Imagine" was also exposed on John Lennon's and Yoko Ono' web site "Imagine Peace".

His expertise and technical skill was called upon again in 2007 when he created a glass façade in New York City (Central Park) for one of the best known Architectural firms/designer Ali Tayar that was also published in the New York Times.

I’m currently represented by the following Galleries:

Denison Gallery Toronto,

ARTA Gallery Toronto,

Carmel Art Gallery, Ottawa,

Galerie Elena Lee, Montreal

Gallery Art11, Montreal,


Making Art or why, is one of the most difficult things to explain or talk about in my opinion because it is certainly for me an impulse or drive that is especially at the beginning not very clear, it is just there and very powerful at the same time!

Since a very early age I was always drawn to Images, pictures, forms, lines and color, and instinctively felt very comfortable looking at art especially paintings with a sense of wonder and curiosity.

I’m constantly in the process to find a visual Language that seem to be always changing from one work to the next and every piece is leading me to another place, where I’m wondering again what is behind the next painting or sculpture I’m making? It feels like a never ending winding track.

I also pursue more than one direction in my paintings because it interest's me how I react to for example using landscape as a point of departure, where I always use the same landscape view from photographs I take outside my studio during different times of the Year as well as various times of the Day.
I'm equally interested in Abstraction and the challenges that lay within it as well as Painting Faces of People that are important to me, for example Musicians that I listen to.

There is however a very big difference of the state of mind that I’m working in, between my Glass pieces and painting for example. The emotional condition is not the same because the pieces I make with glass and other materials need to be besides the Initial design concept or idea, very carefully planned and calculated to be accomplished, while during the painting process and it doesn’t matter in what medium, the emotional feedback is immediate or instantly.

I believe in my paintings as well as sculptures there are elements of free expression and then again of controlled form and order, which is certainly a manifestation of my Personality showing thru or reflecting in my work.



1975 -1977, Master degree study, Glassmaker Guild of Cologne, Germany

Became a Master of the Cologne Guild in October 1977

1975 - 1977, Glass Technology and design, Glass College Rheinbach Germany,

“Dual” education program in art and glass technology.

1970 - 1975 Five Years’ mandatory practice, after apprenticeship and prior to applying for Master’s Degrees, with the Firm of Paul Bong, Cologne, Germany, founded in 1901.

1967 -1970, 3 Year Apprenticeship at the Jacob Melchior Atelier (The oldest stained glass studio in Cologne founded in 1854) graduated as a Journeyman with certificate.

Upcoming Show

July 10th To the 29th   “Summer Heat” at the ARTA Gallery Toronto

Recent Shows

SOFA Chicago November 2-4, 2012

Group show "Wings" Galerie Elena Lee Montreal, June 2012

ARTExpo Toronto, April 19-22. 2012, with Gordon Harrison Gallery, Ottawa ON

Mariza Frozen Gallery, Berlin Germany, December 10, 2011 to January 10, 2012 “Apocalypse Now”

SOFA Chicago November 2-4, 2011, Art & Design / Glass sculpture

September 2011, Amsterdam Whitney Gallery, Chelsea, New York City

May 17 to June 14, 2011 Solo show, Galerie Elena Lee, Montreal

November 2010, SOFA Chicago, glass sculpture/objects.

Since June 2010 at the Galerie Elena Lee, glass sculpture/objects.

September 2010 Instructor Exhibit at the Ottawa school of art, Orleans campus.

2006 –2009 always showing glass and paintings at the Gallery for Her, By ward Market Ottawa.

30 September - 05 December 2005 solo Exhibition Salle Alfred Langevin, Huntingdon, Quebec Cultural Center.

1980’s Canada

1992 Museum of fine Arts, Montreal, Gallery, during the Rene Magritte Exhibition, showcasing local artist working in the ssurrealist style.

1990 Galerie De Lisle, Montreal

1987 Galerie Port Maurice, Qc. Solo show, glass only.

1986 City of Dorval Cultural center, solo show, glass and paintings.


1984 –1985 EP Galerie, Duesseldorf, group exhibition.

1984 - Galerie Van Remmen, Solingen, solo show.

1981 - Goodyear Germany, Cologne solo show

1981 –Siemens Head quarter, Cologne, solo show.

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