Helmut Friedel completed his university studies between Munich and Florence. After the degree, he won a scholarship from Hertziana Library in Rome. He teaches at the University and the Academy of Fine Arts of Munich. Since 1977 he was curator of contemporary art at the Lenbachhaus, Munich and from 1990 to 2013 he was the Director. From 2014 to 2017 he was the Director of the Museum Frieder Burda, Baden-Baden. He is a member of the Akademie der Schönen Künste, Munich and the Accademia di San Luca, Rome.