Theo Wilhelm Wolvecamp was a Dutch artist and member of the COBRA group. Born in 1925 in Hengelo, he was the son of a tailor. After his father’s death, Theo was raised by his uncle, a gamekeeper. Inspired by expressionists and Kandinsky’s book “Concerning the Spiritual in Art: Especially in Painting,” Wolvecamp decided to become an artist, attending the Academy of Art in Arnhem from 1945-1947. He abandoned his study at the Academy of Art in 1947 moving to Amsterdam and developing a style of spontaneously rendering abstract symbols.


Upon being noticed by Corneille, Karel Appel and Constant, Wolvecamp cofounded the Dutch Experimental Group in 1948, later known as the COBRA group. A very experimental and improvisational artist, he shied away from the limelight, unlike other COBRA members. Much of his work from this period does not exist, because Wolvecamp destroyed much of it. Preferring to work in isolation, Wolvecamp did not go public with his work until 1967 at a one-man exhibition in Arnhem.


His work is in the collection of the Carnegie Museum of Art as well as being exhibited in numerous exhibitions across The Netherlands and Europe. His past living room in Hengelo is today the “Lambooijhuis,” a center for art and artists.


Wolvecamp died in Amsterdam in 1992.

Works by Theo Wilhelm Wolvecamp