Alfred Alexander Gockel was born in 1952, in the coal mining community of Lüdinghausen, Germany. Both of his parents were creative, his father a designer and his mother a crafts maker. When he was eight years old and fascinated by the magic of color on paper, Gockel's talent and enthusiasm lead to the publication of his first artwork by a German publisher. "We did not have a lot of money when I was growing up," Gockel says. "My parents would take me to the zoo and I would sit down and paint for hours. They really inspired me to be an artist."
When he was 16, Gockel began working in the coal mines and was going to become an engineer. However, the mining industry collapsed and Gockel was forced into the army where he spent the next two and one half years. Then in 1973, he began his studies at the Polytechnic Academy in Münster, where he specialized in the printing process of silkscreens and lithographs, and where he completed his degree in 1977. Since 1981, Alfred Gockel has freelanced as a designer for some of Germany's largest advertising agencies, while devoting his free time to his painting, print making and sculpture. He also returned to Polytechnic Academy, but this time as a teacher. In 1985, however, Gockel stopped teaching, decided he wanted to focus on his art, and began to travel outside of Germany. "I started out doing a show in England, then one in New York." In his travels, Gockel says he has been influenced by such artists as Dali, Tapies, Picasso and Miro.
Gockel's canvases consist of abstract figures and forms relating to each other in an almost lyrical way. There are brilliant colors and a constant graceful motion taking place, punctuated with powerful accent marks. "My aim is to paint harmony," Gockel has said.
In 1999, as a result of international recognition, Alfred Gockel constructed a larger studio, making it possible for him to expand into larger works. His undeniably unique style has caused an enormous demand from art collectors. Because of his participation in many important international exhibitions, live performances and social commitments, Alfred Gockel has become a self-accomplished and well recognized artist.
When he has the time, he plays tennis, walks in the German forests with his two dogs, rides with his wife of 30 years, Ingrid, on their Harleys, or drives to their favorite spot at the island Sylt.