Artwork’s Title: Gegen den Bösen Blick II (Against the Evil Eye II)
Materials Used: Acrylic on canvas
Studio Based: Munich
Can you tell us about the process of making your work?
In my paintings I follow the principle of collage. I render multiple layers of color and form which are in contrast to each other, but eventually joining in unity. For this I use a personal collection of photos, newspaper clippings and various images. I deconstruct them and take away various forms and colors. Later, these will determine the mood and atmosphere of the painting.
How would you define your work in a few words (ideally in 3 words)?
Arrange the chaos.
Would you use another three different words to describe this particular painting?
No, I would use the same three words.
How did you come up with this painting idea? Is there any story behind this painting?
The picture belongs to a series that deals with the phenomenon of the evil eye. The term “Against the Evil Eye” has existed for millennia and has always been interpreted differently. Sometimes it had political relevance; sometimes it was used to offer protection against death, envy or disease in form of a talisman. These ambivalent interpretations fascinate me. I am particularly interested in how a shape, a picture, a symbol or an object changes over time. What will be added, what will dissolve, what will remain? How does the meaning of a story or a symbol change?
In this paintings’ context, I also deal with talismans, death cults and grave goods from different parts of the world, which were used to transport an entity into a new time. By doing so, something intangible is captured in a tangible form. I find this combination of past and future both exciting and poetic.
What colour is used the most in this painting?
What would be the best way to exhibit your work?
I always work in series. That is why it is important to place the images in the room so that they relate to each other. In the best case, the showroom offers the opportunity to show a complete series.
Can you mention any artists you, lately or generally, take inspiration from?
I collect all sorts of visual material: paintings, photos from social networks, newspaper clippings, old and new postcards, different perspectives on the world. Collecting these materials follow a purely visual logic and serve as the inspiration for my paintings. For this reason Hannah Höch is a great inspiration for me at the moment. With her sensitivity and attentive eye, she was able to observe the world in its many facets and bring it to a coherent whole.
How do you know when this painting was finished?
It’s usually a bit like tidying up after a party. There has to be the moment to realize that now everything is there, where it should be. With this particular painting it also was like this.
What about the place where you work? What’s your studio space look like?
Currently my studio is an old rather small building in a nice Munich backyard. Unfortunately, in winter it gets quite cold there, so that I will move this year to another one. But I do like the atmosphere there a lot. It’s a hideout in which I can totally be in my own world.
Is there any particular message that you wish your viewers can take from this painting?
I do not have a specific message to the viewer, I would much rather let the viewer have his or her own imaginary ideas and associations with the image. That way the image will eventually become part of something new.
What does your mum think about your art?
I think, there are some works which she likes and some which she doesn’t. Most of the time she does tell me that she likes them.
Which exhibition did you visit last?
Alex Katz at the Museum Brandhorst.
Which are your plans for the near future?
Currently I’m working on a series called “how to leave”. I’m planning on doing around 10 more paintings for this series which I would like to present in an upcoming exhibition at the end of the year. I also want to go abroad for a few months to work.
© All images are courtesy of the artist