Artist Statement, January 2023

In my paintings, the forest is the ground in which I place my figures.

The forest as a natural and living space, symbol of identity, backdrop of numerous fairy tales and legends, retreat, a place full of secrets and without overview, ambiguous. Behind each tree can hide both, a wicked witch and a fairy godmother. Close opposites between blossoming life and decomposition and death are recurring themes in my paintings. Here I try to explore balance and create harmony. The squirrel Ratatösk from the Edda, who continually jumps back and forth between the opposing forces of the eagle in the top of the world tree and the dragon at its roots, has become my alter ego.

The fascination for fur, untamed nature and figurative oil painting have led me to the realistic representation of wild animals. But the animals also point to a spiritual level, have been charged with many meanings throughout the world since time immemorial. The confusion in the forest reflects for me the complexity of the world. There is much more possible than it seems at first glance. Magical and scary at the same time, this space stimulates my imagination.

Since February 2022 I take victims of the Ukraine war into my forest spaces. The animals reflect feelings or act as guardians of the dead and companions of the soul. Painting, I celebrate a kind of funeral ritual that gives the humiliated people back some of their dignity. Last spring, I developed the exhibition concept "Kobsar", as artists who work on political issues and historical events are called in Ukraine. In Berlin and Bad Soden, exhibitions could already be realized, together with two other artists. Influenced by this, I would like to continue taking up political or socially relevant topics in my paintings.

 

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