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Strange Figurations

      Welcome to the world of imagination. Fantastic depictions of the world have intrigued artists throughout the centuries. Saints and demons were shown to populate  heaven and hell and the space in between. When the focus of the art changed from clerical to worldly themes, these paintings often reflect the shortfalls of the human contemporaries. The critique is usually subtle and often hidden behind a  humorous presentation, as can be admired in the wonderful work of Hieronymus Bosch, Pieter Bruegel the Elder or Lucas Cranach the Elder.

       The Surrealist movement of the 20th century triggered a new wave of fantastic art. A puzzling parallel universe  was created by Max Ernst, Rene Magritte, Salvador Dali, Leonora Carrington and Remedios Varo, to name just a few representatives of this period. Although other movements in art came and went after that, surrealist art never disappeared, but is still created today by many excellent  painters in various countries. The  artist groups  "Libellule", "Magical Dreams" and "Imago" represent many of the modern surrealists.

        Where do I see my own images in this context and where do my ideas come from? It can be just a crazy idea before falling asleep or an unusual image on the internet that is adapted in some way and triggers a new composition. Some of my paintings are intended to reflect to some extent the world I live in. As this world is an imperfect one, there is no shortage of subjects to focus on. I don't see myself as a social or political cartoonist, but I am trying to meet this imperfect world with a sense of humor.


        The roots of abstract art go back to the 19th century when artists start to abandon the exact representation of an object, person or landscape and experimented with the idea that form and color alone can express emotion. An astounding diversity of styles has been created in non-representational art in the past century and to this very day. Although I admire many of these artists in their own way, I do not adhere to a certain group or style.  


        When I begin an abstract painting I do not know what its final appearance will be like. The painting is developed stepwise and evaluated after each step. Sometimes this process works faster than other times. I usually put the painting in a position where I walk by several times a day. Often I can suddenly see what is needed for further completion. If the painting does not "talk" to me anymore, it is finished.


        For the monotypes I use an etching press to create these "painted prints". I transfer the oil based ink from plexiglass plates of different sizes onto paper, using the pressure of an printing press rather than a brush. The final image is the result of many print runs with drying time in between. A new layer of different shapes and colors is superimposed in each step and often yield results that are unpredictable. As the surface of the plexiglass is completely smooth and does not contain raised or carved information, it is not possible to produce two identical prints with this technique and each image is unique.  


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