Until a few years ago, I could not imagine that I can create art.
It changed when I took a course in 2009, to learn using traditional techniques to restore and decorate walls.
My trainer was an artist-artisan, he not only miraculously mixed colours and materials, and explained how the different materials react with each other, he also conjured beautiful examples of multi-coloured stucco, lime plaster and Tadelakt.
I was thrilled, but still far away from thinking that this might have something to do with art.
For me, it was perfect craftsmanship, but it bordered on art 😉
During this course, I discovered that I have a knack for colours and I am quite good in applying the various techniques. So I started practicing to refine my skills. Over the years I have plastered many hundreds of square meters of walls. And still I did not think that this is a kind of art.
Friends who come to visit us every year began early to tell me that I should go a bit further and also use other supports than just walls because it is art, what I was doing.
I am indeed happy they liked the results of my work, but for me, the thought of trying that on canvas, was far away.
In January this year, we visited the Pop Art exhibition at the Tate Modern in London, and because this is such a wonderful museum, we went there again the next day and had a look at the permanent exhibition. I wanted to see the paintings of Gerhard Richter, who impressed me a bit a few years ago at the Museum of Fine Art in Leipzig, but this is another story to tell.
The Richter paintings are wonderful, but the biggest surprise for me that day was a room in which the Seegram Murals by Mark Rothko hang.
I had never heard of this artist and was deeply fascinated. What was hanging there, were paintings for decorating the walls of the Four Seasons restaurants in New York. These paintings reminded me very much of how I decorate walls. I spent about one hour in this dark room, I went back and forth, repeatedly looked at all pictures and was deeply touched. This subtle effect of how colours can influence a room (and moods) was overwhelming.
Now I understood what our friends thought when they looked at my walls and rooms. I decided to transfer techniques for the design of walls on canvas and adapt them to this flexible material.
At a first glance, it might look easy to paint with only one color, but it is quite complicated to bring in texture and depth and trigger emotions.
My two paintings Red and Blue are my first examples of just applying different hues of one colour.
Currently I’m experimenting with the color white, but it still takes a little until I like to show the result to the public.