Reality is exaggerated so that it at times seem simply through the exaggeration. Harms art trademark colourful aesthetics showing characters in scenarios that overlap in time and space. In the past Harms shared exhibitions with renowned artists such as Gerhard Richter, Georg Baselitz, Markus Lüpertz, A.R. Penk and H.R. Giger.
Interview with Daniel Harms artist:
FG: If you should tell someone the story of your life, where would you start from?
Daniel Harms: Actually, my story is not really beautiful, I had to grow up very early because my childhood was not really characterized by beautiful memories. A life in the storm, between self-doubt, rejection and the eternal question “Where do I belong?” Perhaps that was also a reason why I left my hometown Hamburg in 2007 and went to Berlin to find my identity there. Meanwhile, however, I have come to the point where I have learned to accept things, to accept that events have happened in the past, can not be changed. You should look ahead, be positive, optimistic and tolerant of others. It’s going to be worth it.
FG: How was your background as a musician? When did your passion for art start and how did it come to you?
Daniel Harms: My passion for music started when I discovered a LP by Iron Maiden when I was 12 years old, the colorful cover immediately caught my attention, then when I heard the music it was all about me, I had never heard anything so loud and wild. Shortly afterwards, I asked my dad to buy me a guitar, with a little annoyance I realized that guitar playing is not so easy, followed by years of meticulous learning. But it paid off, I played in prestigious local bands and always had the opportunity to tour national and international.
FG: Where do you draw inspiration from for your artworks? And how is your creative approach?
Daniel Harms: In 2011 I had an accident, I crashed on stage when I toured with my band, and I destroyed my leg, it had to be operated several times. With the consequence of the healing process that did not let me walk for about a year, therapies and pain were my companions. I became more and more depressive, with the approach of letting my feelings go, I discovered the painting. Without background, expertise or orientation I started with canvas, colors, just donate everything that was available to me to get started. One day the apartment was full of paintings and my friends thought I should show it to someone, but I did not want it because it was too intimate for me, of course I was persuaded. I took pictures of the paintings, printed them out and went to a gallery, a few months later I had an exclusive contract with a gallery and my first sold-out solo show.
FG: Beside painting, which other art forms do you like?
Daniel Harms: In addition to the painting is currently a short film in progress that is completely made by myself, directing, editing, sound and 2019 there will be a photo exhibition in Berlin. Painting is still the most important medium for me to express myself in, but I also like to take challenges and play with new possibilities.
FG: Which is the best advice you got as an artist?
Daniel Harms: Go your way, do not be ignorant and sometimes give other opinions a chance. Many artists often stand in their own way, making life difficult for themselves. As an artist you have to realize that this way is not easy and you have to make many compromises, friends or a life partner are therefore very important with whom you can exchange information or simply someone who catches you when the brushstroke does not work. In the end, the fun should still be in the foreground.
FG: Can you mention an artist, artwork or series of art projects that particularly influenced/inspired you in your work as an artist?
Daniel Harms: In 2012 when I started I had no reference or guidance, I did not even know artists. After I started painting, I started to ask questions; What am I doing here at all, what is the origin of painting, and how have artists in art history dealt with the questions of their time. I quickly came upon artists who influenced me, Max Beckmann, Egon Schiele, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Karl Schmidt-Rotloff, in general German Expressionism. In international waters I would say that even artists like Jackson Pollock, Goya or Bosch had an influence on me.
FG: When you work, do you prefer silence or listening to music? Which one?
Daniel Harms: When I work it is mostly an overkill on press, music is a prerequisite, here I bump between, aggressive heavy metal, classical, noize and soundtracks back and forth, the tv is running and i put between books and try the relevant one for me to filter.
FG: Dou you have a favourite quote or motto you often think about?
Daniel Harms: “Between fear and pleasure in the terrible feeling“, “Ignorance is a bliss“. Daniel Harms
FG: What are your future projects? What are you working on at the moment?
Daniel Harms: At the moment I am working on several projects at the same time, as mentioned I am currently working on the film project, on the other hand I am currently preparing two exhibitions, one in Santa Monica, USA and the second wich take place in Berlin / Germany. For this, more paintings have to be done.
FG: What do you need to feel happy?
Daniel Harms: I think to be happy I only need to keep my two children in my arms.
Courtesy pics Daniel Harms
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