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Simon Rosenthal Main Profile Image

André Wirsing

Simon Rosenthal

Dresden, Germany

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Conceptual art, Drawing, Painting • Born in Sulzbach-Neuweiler, Germany • Studied at academies in Germany, France, Schottland
 7

in between realities

There are two major spheres in my work:
The human figure, which I love to paint with live models. For me this is a field of research as every model brings his or her own atmosphere and personality that leads to different results. I think that this kind of painting is much about communication and dedication. I like to know people, their story of life, and I feel like a different person all the time and the outcoming painting or portrait is...

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There are two major spheres in my work:
The human figure, which I love to paint with live models. For me this is a field of research as every model brings his or her own atmosphere and personality that leads to different results. I think that this kind of painting is much about communication and dedication. I like to know people, their story of life, and I feel like a different person all the time and the outcoming painting or portrait is always unpredictable and surprising for me. Sometimes I transform portraits by unpersonalizing them. Then they become just `heads´. Being robbed of the function of a portrait- to represent somebody, they become very suggestive, refering to different streams of conciousness and iconographies.

The second sphere is all about narrative or invented motives. Some of those paintings took me two or three years to complete.
The long process of painting starts without any specific idea - I try to find a solution for the emptiness of the white screen.
I might start to fill the void with just a small sketch of a figure or narrative that provides a first dimension to the composition. Then I try to sense a corresponding form and color. Very slowly, a theme appears. But as it appears it is in danger to be destroyed by a rush of painting. Seeing the theme appear and evolve in this processual way of painting is like writing a novel, always writing and rewriting hundreds of pages until the right verbalization is found. It is a very exhausting, both intuitive and rational way of echoeing my state of mind in a certain period of time.


Zeitenwende, 220x 510 cm, oil on canvas, 2015- 2016, photograph by Robert Vanis

Zeitenwende, 220x 510 cm, oil on canvas, 2015- 2016, photograph by Robert Vanis

Plateau Europa, 220x 370 cm, oil on canvas, 2015-2016 photograph by Matthias Blumenhagen

Plateau Europa, 220x 370 cm, oil on canvas, 2015-2016 photograph by Matthias Blumenhagen

left: Plateau Europa, 220x 370 cm, oil on canvas, 2015-2016 // right: Zeitenwende, 220x 510 cm, oil on canvas, 2015-2016, photograph by Robert Vanis

left: Plateau Europa, 220x 370 cm, oil on canvas, 2015-2016 // right: Zeitenwende, 220x 510 cm, oil on canvas, 2015-2016, photograph by Robert Vanis

Soldat, 190x 130 cm, oil on canvas, 2011

Soldat, 190x 130 cm, oil on canvas, 2011

Star/Ego/USA (The will to power), 180x 150 cm, oil on canvas, 2012-2014, private collection, Germany, photographed by Stefan Brockmann

Star/Ego/USA (The will to power), 180x 150 cm, oil on canvas, 2012-2014, private collection, Germany, photographed by Stefan Brockmann

Fähre, 240x 180 cm, oil on canvas, 2010-2012. private collection, Saudi- Arabia

Fähre, 240x 180 cm, oil on canvas, 2010-2012. private collection, Saudi- Arabia

Abendstimmung, 50x60cm, oil on canvas, 2012, private collection, Saudi- Arabia

Abendstimmung, 50x60cm, oil on canvas, 2012, private collection, Saudi- Arabia

Kopf, 50x40cm, oil on canvas, 2012, collection Mohammed Abdul Latif Jameel, Saudi- Arabia

Kopf, 50x40cm, oil on canvas, 2012, collection Mohammed Abdul Latif Jameel, Saudi- Arabia

Kopf, 50x40cm, oil on canvas, 2012, collection Mohammed Abdul Latif Jameel, Saudi- Arabia

Kopf, 50x40cm, oil on canvas, 2012, collection Mohammed Abdul Latif Jameel, Saudi- Arabia

What is it about your studio space that inspires you?

As I worked in many different studios until now, I can say that every space makes an impact on my work. My current studio- an old woodcraft workshop in the heart of Dresden has the quality of lived lifes and of being from another time and another dimension, long before the reunion of Germany. Being apart from the current, hidden in this great workshop with antique furniture, the space inspires me to go back to the very basics of painting. Taking long periods of time to work with models just looking and painting and not reflecting on any contemporary discourse.

What sounds, scents and sights do you encounter while in your studio?

Having been tought as a classical musician, I listen to "classical" music, mainly Bach, Franz Schubert, Gustav Mahler. Without them its totally quiet. The look from my window goes into a small courtyard between two houses from the 19. century. In the summertime it is a great place to chill out with two big trees and many plants around. The air in my studio still has the scent of woodcraft, which always brings me back to my early days as a painter, when I had the most intense time in a similar studio, close to cologne.

What is your favourite material to work with? How has your use of it evolved throughout your practice?

My favorite material is fine but heavy canvas, which is primed very properly and even. I like the oil color starting to gloom, when I spread it over the white primed ground. It took me years to find out, what is most usefull for me, having painted on wood, raw cardboard, stones and plastic.

What themes do you pursue?

the past four years, I worked on paintings concerning political themes. Europe and the rising questions of my generation has been my biggest challeges within these themes. I tried to find expression for the sentiments and states of mind we all share in this time of big crossroads. At the same time- as it has always been- painting portraits of people I find fascinating or are important to me accompanied the big narratives.

What advice has had the biggest impact on your career?

Think for the long run.

If you could install your art absolutely anywhere, where would that be?

My biggest pieces until now- the "Europe Paintings" I´d like to install in the European parliament in Bruxelles.

If you could only have one piece of art in your life, what would it be?

clearly "La bonheur de vivre" by Matisse. It was probably one of the first paintings I saw in my life when I was about 6 years old.

If you weren´t an artist, what would you be doing?

I thought about that over and over again. But the reason why I am an artist is, that I can not imagine to be something else. I tried some different professions but i always came back to what I am. Lately I think its not a matter of my choice.

What are your favourite places besides your studio?

I like clear mountain rivers. There are places in canada and alaska, I like a lot. Also Slowenia, Swizerland and Austria and South-Germany have these fascinating landscapes where these waters flow free, clear and cold from the mountains, being home to extraordinary species like trouts and salmons. I fish with the fly- method. Then there are spiritual places like Taizé in France, an Ashram in Chennai, India and the visionary city of Auroville, India which are very important to me.


EXHIBITIONS

SOLO

2017

Das goldene Vlies ( The golden fleece) // Galerie Michaela Helfrich, Berlin

2016

Die letzten Jahre, schwebend // produzenten I galerie, Dresden

GROUP

2017

Worte, denen keine Taten folgen (words without actions) // Kunstquartier Bethanien, Berlin

Geburtstag (Birthday) // produzenten I galerie, Dresden

2016

KIWOTSUKETE 気をつけて // Mujikobo Gallery, Yokohama, Japan

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WORKS IN COLLECTIONS

Private collections in Saudi Arabia, The Netherlands, Norway and Germany

collection Mohammed Abdul Latif Jameel, Saudi- Arabia

GALLERIES

produzenten I galerie | http://www.produzenten.net/

Galerie Michaela Helfrich | http://www.michaelahelfrich-galerie.com/

Galerie Klee | http://galerie-klee-lüdenscheid.de/ausstellungen/

PUBLICATIONS

Simon Rosenthal (work catalogue 2013)

Diploma catalogue 2016, HfBK Dresden

AWARDS

Scholarship of the "Stiftung Osterberg für Kunst und Kultur"

2016 Travel Scholarship of the city of Dresden

2015 Travel Scholarship of the city of Dresden

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For more information and inquiries about this artist, please contact Artitious by emailing to artist@artitious.com

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