Thanks so much to Katherine York for helping out with the process and documentation! Check out her beautiful photos linked above.
Thanks so much to Katherine York for helping out with the process and documentation! Check out her beautiful photos linked above.
I was fortunate enough to be a part of a group show at new gallery in Prenzlauerberg across from the Kulturbrauerei called GHYCZY. To be more specific, I was exhibiting my jewelry in the section of the gallery called New Values. These are just the kind of talented artists I would like to be shown with!
Here are some Photos from the opening that at the end of September.
Thanks very much to Ksenia Obukhova for having me in the show! Also thanks to Nick Simpson for taking these photos, and if you would like to see more pictures of my jewelry and know a little bit more about it, look under the Schmuck/Popular Usage tab on the top right corner of this page.
In his interview with the Ecole Nationale Superierure des Beaux-arts (Paris Academy of the Fine Arts) the artist Absalon refers to himself as an architect aspiring to “close the gap between his thoughts and his life”. The embodiment of these aspirations are his houses, or Cells, which are indeed the center pieces of the exhibition presented by the Kunst Werke Institution of Contemporary Art in Berlin. The exhibition is the most thorough presentation of Absalon’s art to date, and covers nearly his entire body of work.
Before his untimely death in Oct. 1993 due to AIDS, Absalon was realizing his most ambitious project in which six Cells of his design were to be installed in six different cities (Paris, Zürich, Frankfurt, New York, Tel Aviv, Tokyo) where the artist would then live in them for an extended period of time.
At first glance Absalon’s white Cells look as if they are an ultra-modern housing development from Apple Computers, but are built with the wisdom of antiquity by using measurements taken from the artists own body. Absalon painstakingly took measurements of his height, arm span, and shoulder width to serve a minimalist form and function. In addition, the houses are built for specific sties in each city, yet emphasize a complete cultural disconnect with their surroundings.
Absalon’s houses are “in no way utopian”, and are minimal to the point of playful discomfort. Once inside, one does not always have the ability to stand up straight. The rooms afford only enough room to serve basic single functions, and are intended to demonstrate how we can learn to live with discomfort through custom or routine. The Cells were originally intended to be left unkempt after fulfilling their use, making their preservation an otherworldly monument to life.
After viewing the entire exhibition one can see the close attention Absalon pays to process, in how he brings his Cells to life from sketch, to scale model, and finally full scale construction. The installation of sculptures on the second and third floors bear resemblance to his scale models, as if he always had something larger and more prolific in mind.
Here is a great link to a video of the exhibition and interview (Deutsch) with the director of Kunst-Werke Berlin, Susanne Pfeffer.
Ein Amerikanischer Steinbildhauer interviewt einen Deutschen Steinbildhauer.
SW: Sean Williams
Wie bist Du zu deinem Beruf Steinbildhauer gekommen?
A: Andreas Hoferick
Mein Vater geriet im Kalten Krieg zwischen die Fronten und wurde 1972 beruflich passiviert. Daraus erwuchs in mir der Wunsch beruflich etwas ganz Anderes zu werden und die musischen Ambitionen meiner Mutter führten mich zur Bildenden Kunst. Die lange unfreiwillige Kindheit in der DDR und sozialistische Erziehung gegen die ich mich früh genug positioniert habe und deshalb nicht an den DDR-Kunsthochschulen studieren durfte, führte zu einem ausgeprägten alternativem Denken. Deshalb auch der Umweg über eine Bergbaulehre im Kupferschieferbergbau (Lehrling im Bergbau) . Danach begegnete ich auf meiner Suche nach einer Bildhauerwerkstatt dem Steinbildhauermeister J. Klimes in Berlin. Er war Leiter einer Klassischen Bildhauerwerkstatt mit 27 Kollegen und vermittelte historisches Handwerk in der Steinbildhauerei. Kulturell und alternativ orientierte Menschen hatten in der DDR lediglich in einer Nische eine Überlebenschance. Und für mich bot sich diese Gelegenheit in der Werkstatt Klimes. Isoliert von der Welt, konnte ich mich in 11 Jahren Anstellung den Klassischen Stein-Skulpturen widmen, die es zu rekonstruieren galt, denn durch den II.WK waren in Berlin hohe Verluste entstanden.
SW: Wie und wann ist Deine Werkstatt gegründet worden?
A: Als die Werkstett Klimes 5 Jahre nach der „Maueröffnung“ in dem Neuen Wirtschaftssystem nicht mehr überlebensfähig war entschloss ich mich 1995 mit 3 weiteren Kollegen eine kleinere Werkstatt auszugründen und ich fand Anschluss an des Kollegium der Restauratoren Berlin welches eine freie Assoziation von Restauratoren im selben Stadtbezirk Weißensee war und ist. Von 1989-1993 studierte ich an der TFH – Wedding Steinrestaurierung, so kann ich meine Steinbildhauerischen Arbeiten unterstützen.
15 Jahre lang (1995-2010) ist es mir gelungen die Werkstatt Hoferick in demselben Stil wie die Werkstatt Klimes weiterzuführen, allerdings nur noch mit 7 Mitarbeitern.
SW: Welches war das Projekt mit der interessantesten Herausforderung für Dich und warum?
A: Pferdeportraits sind noch vor den Kolossalskulpturen wie z.B. der der „Caritas“ welche eine Größe von 5,70 m besitzt, eine besondere Herausforderung. Abgesehen von meiner unbefangenen Entdeckung, dass Pferde Fabelwesen gleichen, ist die Skulptur eines Pferdes wohl das Komplizierteste was einem naturalistisch arbeitenden Bildhauer begegnen kann.
SW: Wie ist Deine Werkstattphilosophie?
A: Skulpturen oder Ensembles zu schaffen, die der vermeintlichen Kurzlebigkeit unserer Zeit widerstehen. Wir kreieren die historische Zukunft in unserem Metier: Steinbildhauerei
SW: Wie sieht die Zukunft für Dich aus?
A: Was ich als nächstes machen will ist meine KUNST in anderen Ländern und Kulturen bekanntzumachen und an den in der Kunst bisher üblichen Selbstdarstellungen vorbei zu agieren. Z.B Themen anderer Kulturen aufzunehmen und in einem kulturellen Dialog bildnerisch darzustellen.
SW: How did you become a Stone carver?
A: Andreas Hoferick
In the cold war my father operated between the two fronts and was occupationally passified in 1972. From then on there grew a desire to become something completely different and my mother’s musical ambitions drove me to fine art. The long restricted childhood in the DDR and socialistic upbringing, which I had been against early on and thus didn’t allow me to study in the DDR fine art colleges, lead me to an distinct alternative route. I began with the indirect route of becoming and apprentice in a copper mine. Afterwards during my search for a scupture workshop I came across the Stonecarver J. Klimes in Berlin. He was the head of a classical sculpture workshop with 27 co-workers and subcontracted historical works of sculpture. Cultured and alternatively oriented people in the DDR’s only chance to survive was finding a Niche. The workshop of J. Klimes offered me this opportunity. Isolated from the world, I was able to dedicate 11 years of employment to classical stone sculpture intended for reconstruction, and the many losses of WW2 in Berlin provided ample work.
SW: How and when did you establish your workshop?
A: When Klimes’ workshop was no longer viable in the new economic system 5 years after the ‚opening of the wall’, 3 other colleagues and I resolved to start up a small workshop and found connections in the College of Restuaration Berlin which is a free association of conservators in Weißensee. From 1989 to 1993 I studied stone conservation at the TFH-Wedding (University of Applied Sciences), which supports my work as a stone carver. For 15 years I successfully ran the workshop Hoferick in the same fashion as the workshop Klimes, if only with 7 co-workers.
SW: Which was the project with the most interesting challenge for you, and why?
A: Horse portraits, even in comparison to collossal sculptures like „Caritas“ which is 5.7m tall, are especially challenging. Irrespective of my naive observations, the horse is that of a myth, and the form of a horse if definitely the most complicated form that a figurative sculptor can come up against.
SW: What is your workshop Philosophie?
A: To create sculptures or compositions, that withstand the professed humanity of our time. We create the historical future in our profession: Stonecarving.
SW: What do you have in mind fort he future?
A: What I want to do next is to make my art well known in other countries and cultures, and to work past what has been traditionally called self-expression in art. For example: taking up themes of other cultures and expressing them in a visual cultural dialogue. Stone carving is an age-old tradition in which every person doesn’t have to think of within a specific epoch or culture and in times of such global thinking it is important to foster a continuation of these skills.
Fotos mit freunchliche Genehmigung von Andreas Hoferick
Photo provided courtesy of Andreas Hoferick
A good friend of mine, Stephan, did some comedy last night. Check him out!
I am seeing you, no?
After a month back in Berlin, I was given the extreme privilege of taking over the downstairs at Rockelmann Stuhltrager Projects for a 2 month residency. The first week I moved all relevant materials into the space, and by now I have started a few drawings and busted out some smaller ideas that I have been wanting to do for a while.
Here are photos of the space.
The space is plenty of room to make big drawings, a few clay pieces, and some smaller casts that I a working on. For the past week I have been trying out a faux bronze patina on polyurethane casts. Eventually, I would like to do larger pieces with this technique but for now these are fun experiments.
There are larger drawings and clay pieces going on, but they are in the beginning phases.
I am very pleased to announce that I have found a new location for my Jewelry line, Popular Usage, in Berlin. After reading about the opening of Wasted German Youth on my favorite blog, I then went in myself to see if they had any interest in displaying some AWESOME jewelry. They were excited about the project and offered to display them in the store for the summer and see what the response is. You can find Wasted German Youth at Memhard Strasse 1 next to Alexander Platz.
I look forward to working with the good people at Wasted German Youth and further possibilities for collaboration. Special thanks to Paul Snowden for taking such an interest in my work. Here’s cool man Paul, man of Berlin design mystery, pictured below.
As Times get tough here in Berlin one has to take whatever job comes their way. Last weekend, as a part of Gallery Weekend Berlin, I was asked to play a part in a performance by the Italian artist Pietro Roccasalva at Johnen Gallery.
When I asked if the gallery still needed people for the performance (at which point I had no idea what I would have to do) they said, “Yeah, it involves painting using a spray gun.” Sounded simple enough, “How tall are you?” There was a follow up call to double check my height. When I got there I was taken to the room where the performance was going to be, and looked down on the floor to see full sized plastic knight armor laid out. “What’s that for?”, I asked. I looked back at the gallery director to see a finger pointing at me.
So I tried the suit on. Felt good, felt real good. Then I had to try it out with the spray gun. “You’re really good with that! Could you go a little slower?” Little did they know that I had experience with a spray gun. The last detail was that I had to spray another knight while he was spray painting me.
Roll the tape.
Notice how there is no armor covering the butt.
If I were to then do paintings of these photos, would that be considered self-referential? I’m the one on the left, by the way.
There were two performances. One on Friday night, and the other on the following Saturday afternoon. The performance took, from head to toe, one hour to complete. These photos were taken, as always, by Nick Simpson on the Saturday performance. Hopefully I can get some photos from the opening. That was only the first gallery I went to that night.
I finally got some decent pictures from the exhibition in Budapest. The cars look great, and Hajnal will have them on display at the Kiscelli Museum until the and of May. All in all, it was a great trip and I really love the city.
The room where the full size car is installed is HUGE. It used to be a cathedral and the sound is amazing. It was great to finally see the car I was modelling in real life! I think I did okay working just from photos, but mine turned out to be a little more sporty than the real life version.
It snowed on the day of the exhibition, but we spent most of the day at the outdoor thermal baths with little snow flakes falling on our heads and creating a massive fog cloud over the pool. That was a great day. The picture really doesn’t do a justice, but here’s one.
Just imagine looking for your girlfriend in the fog, and getting a big handful of fat hairy Hungarian man instead… “Hellllooo you…OH GOD! I mean, excuse me!”
The finishing touches.
The exhibition is tomorrow night at the Kiscelli Museum in the Buda side of town. The space is huge, and I will have photos of the final installation soon.
Many thanks to Hajnal Nemeth for giving me the opportunity to collaborate on this project, and organizing such a great show!
Now that the silicone is done, and the plaster has been divided into workable parts (Mother-Mold = Schutzform), it’s time to get casting (cast = Abguss)! This thing is turning out to be a beast. I will need another set of hands to make the cast.
Photos by Nick
I think I told myself that the model was done three times. The third time was after these photos were taken, so it looks even a little different still. At this point in the process I am making the silicone mold, and it is covered in silicone. Unfortunately, my main man Nicky Luv is off partying in Portugal, so I have no photos of one of the mold crucial parts of this whole thing. I’ll get a shot of the mold, but for now, here what done–and then finished looks like.
Excellent Photography by Nick Simpson <—check out his new Photos of the canals in Berlin frozen over!
Since Last week I have developed the model a bit further, and I’m really going after the shape of the car, and trying to make it recognizable to your average car enthusiast. The car is also tilted towards the front because of the damage there. Here are some more current photos.
I have until February 14th to finish modeling, at which point I will be making a mold. The finished piece will be two copies made of Forton MG, that will then be painted. The opening for Hajnal Nemth’s exhibition will be on March 11th in Budapest, Hungary at the Kiscelli Museum for Contemporary Art . The exhibition will be in an old cathedral which is a part of the museum. The space is huge, and I am really excited to see the entire exhibition in March.
Once again, all photography done by Nick Luv.
In December I came back to Berlin. There were Christmas Markets lining the streets, and the smell of Glühwein in the air. After Christmas I went to England to stay with my girlfriend for New Years. Hopefully I will have some pictures of that trip soon. When I came back to Berlin on the 7th of January, I had already received an e-mail asking if I could do some clay modeling/mold making work for an artist Hajnal Nemeth . For her upcoming exhibition, she will be using a crashed car for an installation. Flyers for the exhibition will be released soon, showing photos of the car that I am modeling.
As you can see, the car is pretty beat up. As far as modeling goes, you pretty much have to start with the basic shape and punch the dents in after. It has really given me an appreciation for all the work that goes into making cars. After all, all cars start as clay models in the concept stage. Here are some photos of my work so far.
All Photography is done by my good buddy and Neighbor, Nick Simpson. Take a look at his new photos that he has done with his pinhole camera, in addition to kindly taking picture for me.