Several friends, who visit my blog regularly asked "why masks?" and "what about the spirits"!
Thank you for asking repeatedly. Currently I am working on a special project, approximately 40 pieces including textile masks, paintings and prints of mask-sketches. I will exhibit these pieces during the month of March 2008 in the Käthe Kollwitz School in Marburg, Germany, where my brother teaches. A vernissage will take place, the exact date has yet to be communicated.
If you are interested and click on the link for their web-site, you will find a blue "in english"-button on the left side. The "KKS" is a school specialized in healthcare, social service/education as well as tourism and gastronomy and it takes a special interest in "intercultural work, the integration and support of disabled people, ecological responsibility and hospitality".
The school is named after the famous german expressionist painter Käthe Kollwitz and regularly organizes exhibitions in cooperation with artists.
Ancestor Spirit Masks
Faces of Ancestor Spirits appear in my sketchbook. They express hope, force and energy. Love, pride and inflexibility. Cheerfulness, acrimony and inpenetrability. Cultural integrity.
“My” masks are expressing the ideas I have about ancestors in general. They show my concern with men, nature and spirituality. They are particularly inspired by intense research about tribal art, by old family portraits and a series of books with portraits of people living at the beginning of the 20th century.
These masks are stylized images of men and women I have not met. They honor the ancestors’ lives, their knowledge and their relationship with nature. I feel that many of their skills and talent were transmitted to me, like the facility to translate visions and ideas into matter by means of pen, paint and brush, - cloth, needle and thread.
Creation of the masks comes naturally. I sketch faces, heads, figures, often with a headdress and colour it with watercolours. The image will then be painted onto plain and undied cloth, linnen or cotton and embellished. Pieces of cloth, rope, thread, embroidery and many layers of paint are used until the object becomes complete.