Hi KNÖ-REI, please introduce yourself
Hello, I am a visual artist from Germany. Influenced by interior architecture, design and the famous Bauhaus, I love geometrical implementations and the world of colors. I mainly do my work in acrylic painting, but I also work with linocut stamp prints. My preferred topics are penetration and demarcation, dynamics and calm, structure and chance, construction and deconstruction, order-disruption-decay-rearrangement.
Interesting. Looking back, when did you start producing art?
I was born with artistic talent. I started with pencils, charcoal and pastels. I was lucky enough to take my first professional layout course when I was 9 years old. I was soon getting recognition for my designs. Geometry and design have been my passions since I was young. The artistic implementation of my infinite creativity is an inner need that I have to follow again and again – anything else would make me unhappy.
I see, and where has your artistic talent taken you so far?
At almost 60 years of age, I still have a lot of fun trying out, discovering and experimenting. And so I’m also always somehow in a state of upheaval. Of course, I always question what I’m doing there. Right now I have a huge pile of sketches and ideas that I still want to implement. In 2021, I was nominated for one of the world’s most renowned Art Award for concrete-constructive art; the André Evard Award. For me this is a great appreciation for my work and gives me even more motivation and strength.
Can your style be clearly categorized?
It’s not that easy to answer. I see myself somehow between constructivism, Geometric Abstraction, Minimalism, Conrete Art 🙂 In fact, I don’t know if the various contemporary artistic expressions can be defined by a single term. I like to refer to myself simply as “Geometrice” because I think this is an appropriate umbrella term for the facets of my work. Because everything I do artistically is based on geometric shapes and considerations or ends in geometric shapes. And that’s what I like about my style: dissolving everything into geometry.
What fascinates you about these styles?
(Hard Edge) I definitely love the Hard Edge Art. The geometric interpretation of our being wants and needs clear boundaries, clear separations. In this way it creates order, systematizes and harmonizes. Hard Edge painting also allows me to concentrate on the essentials of the artistic statement. The creative work does not take place on the canvas, but beforehand, in the head, on the sketch paper or on the computer. For me, Hard Edge Painting is more of a kind of meditative concentration.
How is the feedback from art galleries, collectors or art dealers?
I find it very interesting that collectors and galleries discover a poetry in my geometric works (which at first glance often seem strict) and that my works create a strong attraction. The viewer embark on a journey of discovery that stimulates the imagination and sometimes produces astonishing insights. That makes me happy because then I have achieved my artistic goal.
What ambience do you need to thrive as an artist?
As an artist, I have a strong individualistic disposition. That’s how I prefer to work, and it’s best to work all by myself. For me, the ideal working environment is when my work area is in the immediate vicinity of my living area because I like to “jump back and forth” a little . My work takes place in my head 24/7. Sometimes I suddenly go back to my project in the middle of the night. I always only work on one project, never on several at the same time, because I “immerse myself” in every project. But I still dream of a bigger studio …
Who inspires you?
First and foremost, the Bauhaus artists, of course. But it is actually not so very important who inspires me, but what inspires me. And that’s basically: everything. Often I see my entire environment dissolved into geometric shapes, see harmonies and dissonances, shapes and colors – and the inspiration for a new artistic project is there. But I am also inspired by scientific mathematical and geometrical topics, which I have to approach with great concentration.
What art project would you like to tackle one day?
Designing the wall of a building or a large room, so Art on construction.
Let’s talk about inspiration. What’s on your mind?
Colors in all forms. Nature, clothing, memories, cars in the sunlight, stained glass windows, my wife’s antiques, Christmas decorations. I am also inspired by op artist Julian Stanczak – not only as one of the great colorists of the late 20th century, but also his personal back story. When my 64-year-old body feels tired and sore, I think about what Julian experienced and how he persevered and created a huge body of work. If you don’t know his life story, please look it up. Inspiring.
You seem full of energy. Do you ever need to motivate yourself to create?
No, I never have to motivate myself. It is more likely the other way around and I have to curb my creativity a little. My head is constantly full of drafts, which by far not all I can implement or work out. That is why my sketch and project books are an essential part of my portfolio.
Do you have an all time favorite art piece?
Always that one, that I’m working on. I don’t actually have a “favorite work”. Then I would downgrade or classify my other work. I always give everything, with every work I go to my mental and sometimes also to my physical limits. But I keep looking back at previous work that I still have in my possession. And it happens that after years I rework one or the other or even paint over it.
Would you like to add anything to this interview?
For me, working in a contemporary way does not mean simply being modern or following any artistic trends. In order to do good artistic work, one must remain absolutely authentic and persistent work. I thank you for the opportunity to introduce myself here.
I have to thank, KNÖ-REI.
KNÖ-REI ★ Artist resume
I studied analog graphic design and fine arts and graduated with an institute diploma. I also have a degree in business education. For several years I worked in a wide variety of business areas, but I was always able to keep a connection to design and art. All of my life experiences have helped me grow as a visual artist. Since 2012 I have been able to devote myself exclusively to the fine arts again. In 2021 I was nominated for one of the world’s most renowned art prizes for concrete-constructive art, the André Evard Award.