How it all started

My family history and my identity as a human are important for my work. Some of my major influences were existent prior to my existence. Particularly my father’s family had some very traumatic experiences during the second world war. I never knew about the circumstances until I was about 17 years old. Then I started to investigate about my grandfather and took over the role of the researcher in my family. This has continued until today. Whenever there are things to discover about the family’s past, I get involved.

I have developed a mode of taking responsibility for anguish of past generations. This is due to family constellation and triggered by my personal interest in digging deep.

Very much in contrast with this “dark” side of my influences – which is psychologically intensified due to my exaggerated sensitivity – my interest in the arts began at the age of 6 or so. I really liked drawing and I loved collecting pens, pencils, stickers, and all the girly stuff that you can find in toy shops. I dressed in pink and have always loved things like pink and red flowers on my underwear. I wanted to become a princess or at least a ballet dancer mainly because of the way they were dressed. In my dreams I wanted to be a beautiful long-haired, skinny legged diva, with seductive movements and glamorous clothes.

These deep contrasts between dark sides of life and kitsch-elements are present to this day in my painting and illustration work.

I was also fascinated since my early childhood by diva-like, female personalities. In the last I year did a lot of research on one of my role models: Madonna. I also spent a lot of time trying to create a fictitious personality for my art. My persona was created  to be like my heroines: drug-consuming, man-devouring, sexy, punk-queen, with the looks of a classy prostitute with an intellectual and innocent air but above all with the support and love of an intact family and happy children to surround her.

When I was 16, we had 5 hours of art classes in school per week, and also had to do loads of research in our free time. It was then that I became familiar with techniques like silkscreen printing, photography, and pottery. This all helped lead me to my current pieces. For example, while I was in school, we had to take in a small object and talk about it’s relevance in our lives. I took a playing card with the king on it as my mother was an avid bridge player. The ornaments on the king’s coat on that playing card are the basis for my current work. Themes really absorb me, so I feel that I have to be careful about which I choose to work with.

My technique is secondary to the theme, but I find that I work best with multiple projects in varying medias that are in progress all at once. My techniques, be it applying ink with my fingers, or with a silkscreen, are all developed with the will to experiment and to try new things. I find that the best ideas sometimes come from unexpected results.

This post is also available in: German