November 17, 2017

winners of this year's blooom award by warsteiner

Julian Harper from the U.S., Arshia Sohail from Pakistan and Yun-Ling Chen from Taiwan are the winners of this year’s young artist award. Michael Klich from Germany won the new category “music video”. The winners stood out among 2,300 applicants from 90 countries.
FLTR Uwe Flade, Alain Bieber, Michael Klich (winner of the special category „music video“), Julian Harper (1. place), Prof. Dr. Stephan Berg), Yasha Young, Yun-Ling Chen (3. place), Walter Gehlen, Catharina Cramer
November 15, 2017

It’s starting to get serious

The finalists of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2017 will be featured at Art Düsseldorf during the special exhibition. They're almost ready for the kick-off tomorrow! We're looking forward to seeing you! #blooomawardbywarsteiner2017
November 10, 2017

in the interview: finalist Shahar Marcus

Art meets everyday life: In his video, Shahar waves as he drives a convertible through Dresden. “Have you heard of Shahar Marcus, the artist?” he asks the passersby who see him. We can see how some of them are forced to think hard. Should they have heard of him?
What is the message of your work “Homecoming Artist (Dresden)”?
Throughout my years of artistic activity, I have been concentrating, emphasizing the unfounded action; one which takes place in a neat and orderly manner, but contains an element that in the 21st century is fundamentally baseless. The use of an absurd element integrated with humor allows me to criticize, to point out social phenomena, to awaken the viewer's thoughts on various issues addressing society and politics.
The work Homecoming Artist (Dresden) is a remix of work Homecoming Artist, which I did a decade ago in Israel. This work, like the previous one, points to the existing bubble in the art world by demonstrating the range, the gap in the artist's feelings which are determined according to the arena in which he operates in; While winning an award in the art world creates a sense of recognition on the part of colleagues, curators and art institutions, this feeling shatters when encountering the real world, that is, the one that does not belong to the art scene. The work also speaks of the current reality in which the general public expresses little or no interest in visual art, let alone if this art is not present in mass media, then even the little audience that was interested does not exist. In other words, the work points to the gap between the desire of the general public to be perceived as cultural and intellectual seekers, while in practice they do not devote their time to consumption of this kind. The work is viable also in the realm outside the art arena and in the artistic discourse, and speaks to the figure of a leader as oppose to the common people - a universal issue of a political nature - leaders as celebrities; surely an elevated figure in the public sphere – therefor I choose the artistic action of a wave.
Why did you perform your artwork in Dresden?
In the video there is the concept of the Victory Round - which deals with the image of the leader, the icon to which the people cheers. The round in which the icon travels across the city, waving to the commoners, a royal or a despotic movement, is certainly an absurd act in the 21st century in democratic Israel and Germany.
Beyond the mere location that each of the works were filmed- Homecoming Artist in my home town of Petah Tikva, Israel with my parents as actors, in Homecoming Artist(Dresden) my parents were replaced by German models, the essential difference lies in choosing the point of departure for the tour. Dresden was chosen because it is a democratic city with a rich and charged past that allows me to shed light and refine the artistic process. The reason of secondary order for choosing specifically Dresden is the prospect of a victory round precisely from the point where the trains left for the concentration camps during World War II. Personally, as an Israeli and a Jew, the possibility of doing my artistic work, to embark on a triumphal tour from this charged historical place, is of tremendous personal importance to me. The combination of the location with fruitful cooperation with a German team is a sign of normalization in my eyes. I would like to emphasize that this is not the reason why I did the work, nor the sole reason why Dresden was chosen, but it did play a part. The main reason, as stated, is the possibility of carrying out the artistic process as I see fit and in a way that will intrigue, provoke thought, laugh and provide a political dimension.

Which emotions do you want to evoke in the spectator?
I wish to extract from the viewer the whole range of emotions – those that come from using humor, laughter and thought, curiosity and identification, empathy and wondering. I seek to evoke an internal discussion with the viewer amongst himself regarding the place of the citizen vis-à-vis the leader and the government (represented by the leader), the private versus the public, the personal vs. the establishment.
Music plays an important role in producing emotions. In both versions the music is of the Austrian composer Mahler, Mahler's music was banned as "degenerate" during the Nazi era and only later experienced a renaissanc. Mahler who has a bombastic style saturated with glory and splendor. In fact, the more bombastic the music, the more the leader's image is perceived as more refuted and allows me to present the artistic action in a distinct and clear manner.
What has been the highlight of your artistic career so far?
I see the highlight in two ways: the first is of technical character- the location of the exhibition which is the accepted form of measurement by which artistic success and the realization of professional aspirations are measured. Fortunately, my works have been exhibited in prestigious museums around the world, including The Tate Modern in London, The Hermitage in Moscow, The Maxxi in Rome, the MOCA in Hiroshima as well as other dignified venues. The second reason which bares equal importance lies in the aspect of artistic progress and personal development from a professional perspective. The latter has come to a realization during my video work "The Curator", a project which extended over a significant time span and was the first of its kind for me, as it was the first time that I transitioned from the performance media and dabbled in the medium of film. This transition has enabled me to develop capabilities that I use in my work today. Working in a medium that is fundamentally different is the essence of a creative highlight in my eyes.

Why did you choose a performance to express yourself artistically?
Like many things, the selection of performance as my artistic medium was random and accidental, and it was because it was the first medium that connected me to art. I fell in love with the work and the medium and proceeded in the path. Later I realized that I was also good at it. Over the years, I have developed this medium and spread to different yet complimentary areas. I have transformed the performance to the medium of video, print and installation. These always appear as if the stem of my initial performance.

Why did you decide to apply for the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2017?
What attracted my attention and what I loved about the award was the ability not only to receive a prize but the fact that the award was mainly about career development. It spans over a period of time with a positive trajectory. I can break down the pieces and visualize the ways this award can truly advance my career and help me reach my set out goals; in essence, that is the real prize. This is essentially different from most of the awards, thus I chose to submit - recognition accompanied by artistic advancement.

Why did you choose this artwork specifically for the application?
Homecoming Artist (Dresden) was chosen as I tend to submit works that have been recently completed. Although I have done two more works since then, I chose the Homecoming Artist (Dresden) because it has universal values and therefore appeals to a wide audience. Consequently, I found it best suited for such an award as Bloom by Warsteiner.
November 6, 2017

in the interview: finalist Dongwhan Kang

With his work, Dongwhan intends to illustrate his personal definition of mankind - a human being as a breathing machine.
What is the message of your artwork „die atmende Maschine“ (“the breathing machine)?
How have you looked at people so far? Either as the image of God or a thinking animal. I think differently. In my opinion, a person is rather a breathing machine. And machine is a breathing object.

Which emotions would you like to evoke in the spectator?
A wobbling movement makes a lively sound and brings the visitors a light rhythm. This visibly and audibly designed breathing is not exactly mechanical, but it goes on and on. The work doesn’t imitate the external form of the living being but the fundamental action of the living being. The visitor sees more or less the work of something that is living.
What would you answer if someone claimed that your performance is not to be considered art?
I would be very pleased with the expression, because this would mean that my work is revolutionary. Unfortunately, I see myself rather classic. Marcel Duchamp and Kinetic Art etc. The work has many connections to the art history.
Nowadays, an artwork should fulfill not only the esthetic requirements but should also be astonishing. If an art belongs to the category "not to be considered art”, it’ is a compliment. Namely, "art" is only an old-fashioned term of superior artists. Proper disgrace would be just “a bad for of art”.
Although Beuys said everybody can be an artist, only good artists are valuable, I think.



Do you have an idol? If so, who is it?
Yes, Mr. Thomas Schütte. He is a great contemporary surrealist of our time.
Which wishes and expectations do you have in mind considering your artistic career?
I want to create objects which are going to be perceived as being half-human: a deficient thing as an independent man. In other words, a sculpture with a handicap or a handicapped sculpture. The breathing machine already contains the same character. As a next step, I would like to place valuable artificial joints or artificial organs into my work. Because they contain the love of humanity and the passion for human life. Unfortunately, I cannot afford such materials as it is difficult to get them. To realize it, I would need a sponsor.


Why did you decide to apply for the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2017? Why did you choose this artwork specifically for the application?
Warsteiner is the best Pilsener beer wishing to expand worldwide. I like this young energy. I wanted to try an art prize from another market area. In addition, I think artists and alcohol have a long-lasting partnership that is inseparable.
This work is my first work being operated by an engine. The concept is simple and young. I hope to show the work as many viewers as possible. That's why I decided to submit it for the BLOOOM Award.
November 2, 2017

in the interview: Finalist Andrea schönborn

At first glance, the paper’s graphite coating makes it look like a heavy and metallic object. However, when we look closely, the powerful process of its creation reveals itself in a dense pattern of fine lines. Metamorphosis is part of a series that reflects the London-based artist Andrea Schönborn’s deep interest in sensuous surfaces and the manipulation of materials.
What is the inspiration for your works? What was the inspiration for your work “Meta-morphosis” that you submitted for your application for the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2017?
My works often start with the materials themselves. I am, for example, fascinated by the
texture of plaster and the shiny surface of gloss paint.
Freedom is also very important to my works. It is a constant process of experimenting, try-ing new possibilities and trusting in my creative process.
The Inspiration for "Metamorphosis“ was the shiny character of graphite and my love for drawing. Also, I was excited about the transformation that occurred - a fragile sheet of two-dimensional paper turned into a seemingly sturdy, metallic three-dimensional object.

Which emotions and thoughts came along with the creation of your artwork?
The making of the large-scale work was incredibly time consuming- the process took months. It eventually turned into a mediation-like task to fill bit by bit of the entirety of the paper with drawing. The pace of work developed naturally- as the powerful drawing became painful after some time it forced me to stop. During the necessary breaks, my series of plaster objects "Hello World“ developed.

Which emotions do you want to evoke in the spectator?
That’s for the viewer to decide.
What has been the highlight of your artistic career so far?
People connecting with my work is a genuine highlight for me.
I think, I am at a good point in my life and with my art right now. I love London and enjoy work-ing in my studio. I am grateful for all the creative people I am surrounded by.

Do you have an idol? If so, who is it?
There are many artists I find inspiring- among others, I love the works of Louise Bourgeoise.
At this point in my life, I learn a lot from my son… He is very much a toddler: uninhibited and full of energy. This attitude of openness and lack of preconception is something I deeply feel connected with.

Why did you decide to apply for the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2017? Why did you choose this artwork specifically for the application?
The opportunity to exhibit at the Art Düsseldorf and meet interesting people seemed very ap-pealing to me.
I think "Metamorphosis" is a powerful work which is open to interpretations. Moreover, I love the idea that the work is actually "completed" by the viewers line of sight.
October 31, 2017

in the interview: finalist Inbal Hoffman

In this artwork by the Tel Aviv-based artist, everyday objects converge with the Late Renaissance. Appliances, household garbage and organic elements merge. Botany meets bureaucracy and household conveniences are elevated to the sphere of science.
What was the inspiration for your work “cart of curiosities” that you submitted for your application for the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2017?
The work loosely refers to the renaissance cabinet of curiosities.
It is a site-specific, modular, and Dada-spirited installation, contrived a sculptured environment where the spirit of a Renaissance-like Cabinet of Curiosities faces a collection of everyday objects that have no aura.
The installation’s distraught internal logic is based on a “continuum of consciousness” a closed-circuit, in a way, which is self-feeding and auto-evolving. It turns an assemblage that brings together IKEA, Max-Stock, household waste, and organic elements - into a fantastic crossing between the domestic and the scientific, the botanical and the bureaucratic, the natural and the synthetic. The objects in the installation function as if they were “actors” in a nonsense theatrical setting, conforming to the new roles assigned to them. Ingenuity, improvisation, and playfulness populate the installation with logical landmines and enigmatic humorous traps. The entire composition is made up of small shrewd sculptural units linked by straws, IV tubing, irrigation pipes, or branches. The associative continuum from one organ to the next ceaselessly revolves and evolves. The more we venture inward, the more suspicious we become towards the mechanism. The further we move away, the better we can make out the construction that is holding this installation together.
What is the message of your work “cart of curiosities”?
The message of the work is that art can be amusing and should not be taken so seriously, that art can be made from anything and art is everything. I hope I make structures that make sense to small children as well as sophisticated adults, and everybody can enjoy recognizing the different everyday objects that I hide in the intricate structures I make

What was your process working on your artwork like? Did you picture it exactly as it turned out or did you start with one small idea that grew into the complex installation it turned out to be?
I work in a very small studio, so I start small, with collecting what I think I will need and start by assembling ‘islands’. An island is a composition made of things that I know will be presented together, after finishing an ‘island’ I take it apart and move to work on the next one. Connecting the islands to one another is something that can only be done and decided upon when I am placing the piece at its exhibition space, and as for imagining how the whole thing would look like...the cart was pretty accurately sketched but the rest of the piece just followed as i ran with my imagination and my tools.

What would you tell someone who says they do not understand your artwork?
Art is not to be understood because there is nothing to understand, there is no right or wrong, only a bunch of visual associations being thrown together and you either like it or not.
Which items are indispensable for you in the creation of your artworks?
During the creation of the artwork, all of the items are indispensable and yet dispensable - I work with what I have and create what I don’t have.

What has been the biggest challenge during an installation for you so far?
Choosing the practice of being a large scale installation artist is a challenge by itself, usually it require a big studio, lots of funds, few assistants with various expertise and on top of all that there are the different variables of how the art will fit the space it is housed in during exhibition. I have a tiny studio, I live in a country that have no budget to support art and artists, and my only assistant is my very capable husband and his collection of Bosch tools that has become my weapon of choice as of late. So it is all a challenge from the start to the finish, but I do love challenges, they are the only way to up my game and getting better.

What are your goals for your artistic career?
To do it bigger and better, mostly bigger I think. I am talking about physical size, football field size installations made of ,say, drinking straws - sounds challenging enough I’d say.

Why did you decide to apply for the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2017? Why did you choose this artwork specifically for the application?
I was following the BLOOOM Award for a few years, and it is the most attractive competition I had come across. I’ve submitted my most recent attractive art work.
October 26, 2017

in the interview: finalist Julian harper

He wants to use his art to investigate our relationship to others with regard to race and performance. This motivated Julian to create (among other things) the video “It’s Getting Hot in this Cosby Sweater,” in which he slips into the role of the well-known TV character of the ’90s ...
What is the message of your work “It’s Getting Hot In This Cosby Sweater”?
I am really just trying to understand myself. The piece is a catharsis of sorts. Black icons inspire and trouble us. They reflect the possibility of grandeur among minority peoples. But they also become monolithic. They become more than black. Often in an attempt to relate to me, someone will tell me who I remind them of. This inadvertently becomes a guessing game of what black celebrity they can conjure in their mind first. In those moments identity loses its individuality.

Which emotions do you intend your artwork to evoke among the spectators?
If anything I hope to create a sense of empathy. Humor and tragedy I feel are two elements that catalyze empathy. Tragedy and humor are so concretely linked. I think of performance, especially, as a way to sift past comedy to find empathy.
You said you wanted to explore your relationship to others concerning race and performance: What have you discovered so far – through your creative process and through people’s reactions to your artwork?
I have found that the body is a site. In performance race is inherently content. Though I find direct, live performance to be problematic as an African American, I see video performance as a way to separate my actual self and my recreation of the self. For example, to dance in innocuous on it’s own. But the body gives it meaning and connotation. People relate to the body. They relate to it naturally without pause. I have also discovered there is a point at which a physical joke becomes arduous. There is a transition between funny and painful, and that’s is where I like to get in my work.
What are your goals for your artistic career?
I am currently finishing my undergraduate degree. I hope to study in Europe and become a professor. I think that the future holds a lot of opportunities, and I can’t say I totally know my trajectory. But I think that academia holds a lot of benefits to society ,and hopefully I can be apart of that.

What is your favorite artwork and who is your favorite artist?
Currently my favorite piece has to be “Priceless” by Hank Willis Thomas. I find his directness inspiring. I wish I could be so concise sometimes.

Why did you decide to apply for the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2017? Why did you choose this artwork specifically for the application?
I chose to apply for the Blooom Award because I felt a need to connect with the broader world. Recently, I have been struggling to find what is culturally significant to me. The work is an extension of myself. This show (all shows) are an opportunity for me to create a greater discussion of what is important to people.
October 24, 2017

in the interview: finalist Antonio Guiotto

The Italian artist Antonio Guiotto collected spam e-mails for a year. With his collage “One year of spam,” he draws attention to how we are exposed to constant manipulation in our everyday lives and how we are influenced by the medial presence around us.
What was the inspiration for your work “one year of spam” that you submitted for your application for the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2017?
The inspiration of “one year of spam” was the concept of stratification, applied in something that normally people would consider error, garbage, trap, or everything could be bad thing, as a sort of transformation from waste to beauty.

Do you remember the moment you decided to give digital trash a new purpose? Can you describe your thought process in that moment?
It was my birthday, I was frustrated and sad because I was checking my emails and there was no good news for me or for my art, just 3 mails from friends and 27 in my spam folder, so I started reading them and from that day on, over the period of a year, I have collected all of them.

What are your feelings when you think of (digital) spam? Have those feelings changed during the process of creating your artwork?
I always try to transform things that surround me in art and sometimes even randomness, even if our heart, our minds, never do it by accident.
What is your favorite artwork and who is your favorite artist?
“my hands are my heart” by Gabriel Orozco, but my favorite artist is Andy Kaufman, he was not a visual artist, but a real artist

Do you have an idol? If so, who is it?
My idol is Nikola Tesla.

Why did you decide to apply for the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2017? Why did you choose this artwork specifically for the application?
Honestly, after long time I decide to apply an artwork in a art competition, why BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2017? I don’t know, I didn’t think about the consequences, when I received the news, I did not remember having participated…I’m joking, I think that your prize is cool, it is a great occasion to show a part of my artwork, this is a really special artwork for me.
October 19, 2017

in the interview: finalist Zoe Forster

After extensively examining the topic of superstition, Zoe’s artwork became the by-product of her study. She found that the less people are able to control their future, the more inclined they are to believe in superstitions. Her artwork consists of a circular chalkboard, which has notes written on it and deals with an old English superstition “I will never marry.” This foretells that a woman will never marry if someone sweeps under the chair she is sitting on ...
What was the inspiration for your work “Charming” that you submitted for your application for the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2017?
Many of the women in my life are very superstitious, they’d panic if a new pair of shoes were laid on a table or avoid three consecutive drains on the street in a bid to avoid ‘bad luck’ but the men in my life do not do this. This observation had me thinking about the types of people who perpetrate superstitions raising questions of sex, status, class etc. So the inspiration for this piece actually came from being brought up surrounded by superstitions and ritualistic behaviors.

How did you choose the title “Charming” for your artwork?
A charm, similar to a spell is believed to hold magic power and relating to the occult are worn by the superstitious. Charming being the adjective is a very traditional word therefore is playing on the age-old roots of superstitions whilst also describing the piece.

How exactly did you choose the materials that you used for your artwork?
The materials were scattered around my studio, there was no preparation in creating this piece as a more automatic work flow makes for more authentic work. However chalk on blackboard is my go to medium due to its temporary nature allowing for quick alterations but also to an extent, freeness for the material to work within its own nature.
What has been the highlight of your artistic career so far?
Working with the UCL psychoanalysis unit, creating a piece for the Sigmund Freud museum. I was able to learn so much about my own practice through a mass of experimentation whilst also learning a great deal about the field of psychology itself. Learning is a massive part of my practice and this project with UCL allowed a lot of room for that, which I appreciate massively.

Why did you decide to apply for the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2017? Why did you choose this artwork specifically for the application?
What drew me to the BLOOOM award was the diversity in the artwork you have previously shown. From there I applied, if an opportunity arises why not take it?

Firstly, I chose a blackboard piece because I have a mass of them here in London & at my family home. I’m a fan of my own work because I can make sense of it but I wanted to see if a viewer could look at the piece with limited understanding of context and still find something to look at or enjoy. Specifically, I can’t pin point why I chose this piece over others. Aesthetically the circular marks are coherent with the circular board, the bold harsh writing walks hand in hand with the quick lines and dagger straight elastic bands. But maybe the piece just has a certain charm* to it.
October 17, 2017

in the interview: finalist yun-ling chen

Nothing is more sensitive than an egg yolk. The artist Yun-Ling has placed one of these on a monocle. She seeks to use her artwork to remove the boundary between knowledge and ignorance and between authenticity and abstraction.
Which emotions do you want to evoke in the spectator?
Material culture is at an edge, trembling on the verge of its own transformation. Not Really Really is a work on the verge of tenses and comfortable reaction, shifting between anxious and enjoyable. As we often see an object as a discrete body; less often do we perceive it as an isolated part of something bigger, like the yolk of an egg, or the glass of an antique. An object’s body and its subject are changeable, but when intrinsic qualities become unrecognizable, when it is not what it is, what is it?

Which thoughts and emotions accompanied your working process on this particular artwork?
I used unstable organic fresh object as part of the materials, by playing the way of seeing an object. Shifting form knowing to unknown, real to unreal, truth to lies, attempts to animate an awkward conjunction that illuminate the half-light between perception and action. By taking an object’s recognizable form away, challenging the object abstraction. Every time when I am showing this work, Not Really Really, I always felt tenses and excite at the same time. It is an emotion that I felt from an object in daily life, what is real and what is not real, or is it fake? Moreover is a real object really exist, or are they all a copy from another self?
Where do you draw inspiration for your artworks?
The world today brims with stuff and things. To understand this overflowing, my practice explores the intrinsic properties of materials. When I was young I used to be puzzled by the question of what secured the stable meaning and designation of a book. Was it the outcome of the repeated gestures of naming or were there some immanent connections between materiality and language? I think I thought there might be gaps in the operation of these repeated gestures and that naming was not such a stable enterprise. I never discovered that gap and yet it existed. In this way I lived a double life, one full of stable meanings and one at the edge of disintegration. Without really being able to name this paradox it still seizes hold of me. Everything can be looked at from different perspectives, assuming that we are willing to see something in more than one way. Things that we have seen in daily life may seem to be indisputable, but this does not mean that our habituated ways of seeing them is the only truth. There are plenty of truths that exist to verify a thing. A truth can be a choice to be visible or appear.
What has been the highlight of your artistic career so far?
I initially trained in Taiwan, graduate from Royal College of Art in 2017. Recently I am studying PhD in Fine Art at the University of Reading in UK. My recent work has been included in group-exhibitions including A.P.T Gallery (London), The Harley Gallery (Nottinghamshire), Bankley Gallery (Manchester). And I am looking forward that the BLOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2017 will become my next highlight in my artistic career.

What has been the biggest challenge during an installation for you so far?
Most of the time the viewer will receive a false appearance of the yolk is alive eternal, but also every period giving a ceremony to show that nothing is eternal. It is a pulling against real and un-real, it is also a biggest question I am not sure where I am, it is an anxious lost process for me.

Why did you decide to apply for the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2017? Why did you choose this artwork specifically for the application?
BLOOOM award is one of the well known and competitive competition in Germany. I started to apply for BLOOOM Award by Warsteiner since 2016, so I kept the date in my diary to this year, reminding myself to challenge it again. Not Really Really is a very sensitive, whispering and is a small size of work, and is not commercial as well. But at the same time it is also a work that I first found a new language to interpreting the materialism in my own of sense.
Again, it is my honor that BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2017 given me the opportunity to be in the finalist, and I believe that now is my next artistic career high light.
October 10, 2017

In the interview:
Finalist Nadine Baldow

This Dresden artist has transformed a layered agglomeration of sheep wool into a colorful artwork in magenta, blue, violet, yellow and orange: She gave the work its color by using a spray normally used for marking sheep.
What was the inspiration for your work “Marked Sheep” that you submitted for your application for the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER?
Crucial for the creation for my work "Marked Sheep" was my trip to Scotland. There, I met brightly colored flocks of sheep in an idyllic landscape and I was immediately fascinated. On the one hand, sheep as animals are decisively part of nature, however caused by their bright marks they become an obviously disturbing factor in the landscape. 

What is the message of your work “Marked Sheep”?
The coloring of animals can have the different reasons: The motives reach from religious worship to pragmatic marking of animals as products.  
This topic caught my interest rin terms of "What is our relationship to nature?" for a long period of time. 

In Scotland, sheep are marked with different colors and signs in order to be able to recognize if the animals are vaccinated, how much they weigh, how old they are or if they have lambs.
What do brightly marked, product-categorized animals in the landscape reveal about our relationship to nature?

Grazing sheep in the undulating copious landscape of Scotland inhabit something highly peaceful. At the same time, the marks on the wool of the animals obviously demonstrate that there is something else hidden behind this idyll. 
What is the meaning behind the references to nature that you use in your artworks?
The question of our human relationship to nature is the basis of my work as an artist. One observation I made thereby is the tendency that mankind seems to be driven to optimize their living space in a dominant way on their own terms. Nature solely becomes a resource.

Despite the newly popular trend of wanting to “restore nature”, industrialization and the attached development of a far-reaching infrastructure are endlessly emerging. 
There is hardly any place on earth where no human being has already been before. Nature is rather subordinated in those processes and rarely seen as an equal part, much less would the human being feel to be in an inferior position to “mother nature”.

If we just see the potential of controllable resources in our surroundings, are we still part of nature?
Which items are indispensable for you in the creation of your artworks? Could you please send us images of those?
Breathing Mask
Gloves
Foam Pistol
Camera
Spraypaint

Why did you specifically choose these materials for your artwork?
I usually don't work with traditional art materials, such as bronze or oil paints. In this case, the materials convinced me visually and substantially. The installation "marked sheep" consists of raw unwashed sheep wool which I marked with sheep marking spray. Consciously, I made the decision to just use colors that are as well used for marking sheep in the agriculture.

Which reaction would you like to evoke in the spectator?
I don't want to force my perception onto the viewer - I just want to show it. That is why I am the happiest if only because of the visual impression and my choice of certain materials someone is motivated to reflect - no matter in which direction. 
What has been the highlight of your artistic career so far?
The most defining highlights of my artistic career have been my travels to geographically interesting places.

I have been lucky enough that my artistic examination with nature paired with my thirst for adventure already led me to several fascinating places. 

Leaving my comfort zone makes me more sensitive to my surroundings. Every artistic work on site and out in the world has changed me so far. 

Two experiences within the last had the the most impact on me. Living in a small, close-to-nature and remote village in the Himalayas and my time working on the uninhabited nature conservation isle Vilm.

Why did you decide to apply for the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2017? Why did you choose this artwork specifically for the application?
I have been watching the yearly finalists of the BLOOOM Award for a while now. I came to the conclusion that the artistic positions have been very strong and therefore, I am interested to exhibit in this context. This exhibition is a chance for me to present myself with a larger installation at the special exhibition in the framework of ART DÜSSELDORF. 

I created "Marked Sheep" just before my application for the BLOOOM Award. It is, therefore, quite a fresh work. I chose it because I see a visual and substantial potential in this way of working. 
October 05, 2017

The Top 10 have been selected

The wait is over: Our ten finalists have been selected!

The ten young artists have prevailed themselves against more than 2,300 applications from 90 countries by convincing our jury. Thus, they will exhibit their artworks at the special exhibition of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER in the framework of ART DÜSSELDORF (November 17 to 19, at Areal Böhler).

Read more about our finalists here!

This year a special prize will be awarded for a music video. Find out more about the winner of the new category and places 1 to 3 of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER at the award ceremony on November 17, 6pm in Düsseldorf. Don't miss it!
October 02, 2017

entry of the Week #7

Today’s entry of the week deals with the sense or nonsense of objects.
We present to you the work “schubkarre” (ca. 80x75x150 cm) of the German artist Daniel Wrede.

At first glance, you would assume to see a regular barrow. But check again, it only has one handle.
Did you catch it right away?
September 25, 2017

entry of the week #6

For this week’s entry of the week our editors picked “Fata Morgana” (110x80x60cm) by the Colombian artist Juan Sebastian Rojas.
 
By building a swimming pool inside a desk, Juan wants to create an image of contradiction as he combines a place of play with a workplace.
September 18, 2017

entry of the Week #5

Monday’s call for a new entry of the week!

In his photo series from 2017, Inzajeano Latif captures residents and areas of the black suburban municipality “Lincoln Heights”. His work tells a story around great values and hope against the background of despair and poverty. This picture has the title “Harold Clark, thankful and content“.

Did this catch your interest?
Find out more about his motives for this piece of work in the TIME article.
September 11, 2017

entry of the week #4

Some food for thought with our fourth entry of the week:

Elibelinde - a female figure traditionally shown on kilims (flat woven carpets) - symbolizes fertility and motherhood. With her work of an enlarged and colorful Elibelinde as a wall installation (200x160cm), UK-based Amani Althuawaini wants to challenge the conventional meaning of marriage and dowries.
September 4, 2017

entry of the week #3

Another week, another pick.
The application period ended quite a while ago and
our editors have picked a third entry of the week for you:

'The Superhost' (video, 29min, 920x1080 Full HD) by the Berlin based artist Britta Thie.
Her work engages emerging technologies and the relationship between self and digital representation.

Check out 'The Superhost' on arte.

Enjoy your week, guys!
August 29, 2017

the nominees have been selected

It's starting to get serious -
the nominees for BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2017
have been selected!

Did you apply?
Check your mails to see if you're nominated,
put the nominated stamp on it, that you've received via mail,
and share your submitted work with your followers and friends!
Tag us in you post:

Facebook: @blooomaward
Twitter: @blooomaward
Instagram: @blooomartshow
August 28, 2017

entry of the week #2

It´s Monday.
Let´s start off with the second entry of the week of this year´s BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER:
„Labofähig“ (2017 / 240x300x400cm / materials: steel, SST, metals, marble, plexiglass, plastics) by Willem Harbers from the Netherlands.

What do you think of Willem's work?

Have a good day and week everyone!
August 22, 2017

Entry of the week #1

Are you excited as we are?
Today it´s on.
We´re starting with the first entry of the week:

Raphael Brunk studies at Kunstakademie Duesseldorf (class Andreas Gursky) since 2013. For the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2017 he submitted his work „Capture_Untitled_11“ (50x37cm C-Print Diasec framed (brass)).
In the group of works „Capture“ Raphael searches for a new form of landscape and architectural photography within virtual space.
August 21, 2017

entries of the week

On August 15th, our application period ended and we are still overwhelmed by all the great works of the applicants we received this year.
Out of all of more than 2,300 works we want to present some selected works every week until our judges have chosen the finalists!
Tomorrow we will start showing you our first „entry of the week“.

And we are super excited what works our judges will choose at the end!!

Enjoy, guys!
August 16, 2017

New record!

The application period has ended yesterday and we're beyond happy to share great news with you:
We received over 2,300 applications from 90 countries (!) all over the globe ranging from Iceland to Tonga. You are freakin' awesome, guys!

Soon the jury will decide for the winners. All particpants will receive a notification in September.

Fingers crossed!
July 26, 2017

Application period extended

Still haven't applied yet? No worries – we are extending our application phase, so you still have time to submit your application until August 15, 2017! Apply now!

We’re looking forward to your applications, guys!
Good Luck!
26. Juli 2017

The jury is official!

We are happy to announce this yer's jury members:
  • Catharina Cramer, Patron and Managing Partner of the Warsteiner Group
  • Yasha Young, Director and Curator of URBAN NATION
  • Walter Gehlen, Co Director and Artistic Director of ART DÜSSELDORF and BLOOOM
  • Prof. Stephan Berg, Head of the Kunstmuseum Bonn
  • Alain Bieber, Head of the NRW-Forum
  • Uwe Flade, Music video director
Have a look at the jury members in detail!
May 24, 2017

Matthias Danberg at NRW Forum

© BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER
Matthias Danberg, winner of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016, presents his video art in the virtual reality exhibition UNREAL at NRW Forum in Duesseldorf until July 30.

During today’s preview, his mentor Walter Gehlen stopped by!

Use your chance to win this year’s BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER including a one-year-long mentoring program. Apply now!
May 12, 2017

Stephanie Lüning in Ohio, USA

© Stephanie Lüning
© Stephanie Lüning
© Stephanie Lüning
© Stephanie Lüning
I dream in color! Stephanie Lüning, 2nd winner of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2014, exhibited at Hammond Harkins Galleries in Columbus, Ohio, USA, together with Alteronce Gumby in March.

Lüning’s installations involve the transformation of liquid that slowly materializes into colorful primordial swirls - playing with time, chance and atmospheric conditions.

Use your chance like Stephanie and gain a foothold in the art market by applying for BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2017.
April 25, 2017

Cock, Cock... Who's There?

© Münchner Volkstheater
„Cock, Cock... Who's There?" - The unsettling and touching documentary performance of Samira Elagoz, winner of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2014, immerses the audience into a young woman’s journey between intimacy, sexual expression and violence.
If you’re in Munich on May 07, you shouldn’t miss Samira’s performance in the Münchner Volkstheater (in English language)!
April 21, 2017

Liat Livni at Art Basel Hong Kong

© Walter Gehlen
Liat Livni, winner of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2015, visited one of the most influencial international art fairs Art Basel Hong Kong together with her mentor Walter Gehlen – her winning prize.

This year's award winner will get the chance to visit Art Basel in Miami Beach or Hong Kong, too. Use your chance!
April 21, 2017

Liat Livni at Art Basel Hong Kong

© Walter Gehlen
Liat Livni, winner of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2015, visited one of the most influencial international art fairs Art Basel Hong Kong together with her mentor Walter Gehlen – her winning prize.

This year's award winner will get the chance to visit Art Basel in Miami Beach or Hong Kong, too. Use your chance!
© Walter Gehlen
© Walter Gehlen
April 7, 2017

Rahel Zaugg at Art Paris Art Fair

© Rahel Zaugg
© Rahel Zaugg
© Rahel Zaugg
Rahel Zaugg, winner of the 2nd place of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016, enjoyed her stay in Paris and the inspirational visit at Art Paris Art Fair with a good friend of hers. After having exhibited her work "Liberator - parts of defence" at BLOOOM 2016, she will also be exhibiting this art piece in a selected renown gallery as part of her prize.
March 30, 2017

New category in 2017: Music video

For the first time in 2017 you can apply with your music video for BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER! A special prize will be awarded for this category. An expert from this field will support the jury - the name will be announced here soon!
March 28, 2017

THIS WAS BLOOOM AWARD BY WARSTEINER 2016

BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016

For BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016 we received more than 2,000 applications from 84 countries - a great result and new record!
© Warsteiner
October 27, 2016

MATTHIAS DANBERG WINS BLOOOM AWARD BY WARSTEINER 2016

Matthias Danberg from Germany prevailed against more than 2,000 applicatoins from 84 countries and secured himself the first place of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016.
Video
Duration: 17:40 min
Motives, that are defined somewhere beween transhumanic science-fiction stories and sculptural work, can be seen in the video work of Matthias Danberg.
In this work the artist tries to combine classical antique forms with the modern language of form of the science fiction genre.
Femke Huurdemann, Rahel Zaugg, Matthias Danberg (from left to right)
Winner of the second place was Rahel Zaugg from Germany with her work Liberator - parts of defence. Dutch artist Femke Huurdemann won the third place with her video Pippin and the Pursuits of Life.

Have a look again at the works of our winners and the whole top 10 and read what the artists told us in exciting interviews!
October 21, 2016

In the interview:
Finalist Martin Reiche

“Shell Performance“ is a software-art-installation which integrates three hard drives with personal data, which were found on an electronic waste dump in Ghana. The German artist Martin Reiche tells us in our interview in what way his work is meant to express the integrity of data and privacy in today’s consumer society.
In a nutshell: What is the message underlying your work “Shell Performance“?

“Shell Perfomance” is a software-art-installation – a kind of a collage of a digital life whereby the underlying data was taken from hard drives, which were found on an electronic waste dumb in Ghana. The hard drives contain a huge amount of private documents and photos, pop music as well as pornographic images and videos (mainly from mainstream productions). The work picks up the data and creates a constantly changing, abstract, digital collage from it.
What is your inspiration for your artistic work in general? And what inspired you to design your work “Shell Performance”?

I think it is exciting how the relationship between human beings and technology (and inevitably also between human being and human being) is influenced by the constant development of technology.
I am focusing on technology which I classify as particularly critical; radio technology, networks, software.
What they all have in common is that they can open up new rooms, which again offer potential for artistic creation. Besides, all three can be counted to the “critical infrastructure”, thus it is about technology, whose breakdown has systemic consequences.
“Shell Performance” offers a different point of view: The work plays with private data from unknown natural people, who in no way gave consent to becoming part of an artistic production. But their technological footprints, thus the residual data from the hard drives which were used by them, become the fuel of the installation.
Hence, the dealing with storage technology in general is questioned. My special attention in this work was a nearly archeological and a definitely forensic approach.


What has been the highlight of your artistic career so far?

That’s difficult to answer generally. I was honoured to work with some brilliant artists and to be part of some great exhibitions around the world. A very formative period was my residence in Sao Paolo, Brasil in summer 2015.

Which items are indispensable for you in the creation of your artworks?

As I am working in the genres of installation, sculptures, software art and video art, this question is also difficult to answer generally. Certainly, the notebook is the only actual indispensable instrument.

Why did you decide to apply for BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016? Why did you choose this particular work?

I, personally, see myself as a media artist. However, I participated more and more in fine arts exhibitions in recent years.
It is important for me to establish a bridge here and to integrate media art in all their facets into the context of fine arts.
October 20, 2016

In the interview:
Finalist Xanthe Somers

Within the work “Don’t bite the hand that feed you, or maybe you should” the artist Xanthe Somers reflects on the political situation of her home country Zimbabwe. Find out here about the heroes and the goals of the artist, who is now based in London.
What is the message underlying your work “Don’t bite the hand that feeds you, or maybe you should”?

Mugabe’s 1980 speech of independence was full of promises and hope, which once fueled a nation but have now become empty words. Zimbabwe used to be the breadbasket of Africa, with a thriving maize industry, which has now turned into one of the poorest countries, that is rife with hunger. The words of the speech are jumbled in a pile, making the speech it illegible. The underlying meaning is to try and visually quantify the meaningless and lies of the speech and to represent the starvation, poverty and economic downfall that one man has brought upon a nation.
If you could talk personally to Mr Mugabe, what would you like to tell him?

I would tell him it’s time for change.

What are your goals for your artistic career?

My goal as an artist is to be able to fulfill large-scale projects that can promote change and provoke thought.

Do you have a hero? If yes, who?

I don't have one single person, I admire family, artists, activists, authors for example Ai Weiwei, William Kentridge, Bernard Takawira (Shona Sculptor), individuals who have been brave enough to promote change in Zimbabwe, Pastor Evans.

Which items are indispensable for you in the creation of your artworks?

Inspiration is more indispensable to me than particular items. Found objects, literature, Zimbabwe and my history are all an integral part of the creation of my work.

Why did you decide to apply for BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016?

I applied because I thought it could open up opportunities and visibility for me as an artist.
October 18, 2016

In the interview:
Finalist Tadao Cern

  • Tadao Cern

For Tadao Cern from Lithuania, simplicity is genius. With his “Black Balloons” he secured himself a spot among the Top 10 of the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016. Find out here, what inspired him to his installation and what he wants to achieve as an artist.
Why did you choose to work with black balloons?

Every single day I spend at my studio and my creative process resembles playing. And everything I create comes out of curiosity. The same happened with the project 'Black Balloons'. For an extensive amount of time I had the idea to connect two balloons. I found a free minute between the other currently running projects, bought two balloons, and got overwhelmed by the result.
It was so unpretentious and so magical at the same time! That opposition created by two very simple and playful objects once again brought a unique childlike sense of discovery.
This experience uncovers a lot and the more one looks at it, the more it becomes true: "simplicity is genius".
For the first test I only used two balloons and two different gases: helium and sulfur hexafluoride - the light and the heavy ones. Later on I worked out how to make the balloons float in the middle of a glass tank without connecting them to anything.
How long did it take until you had determined the right amount of the gases needed in each balloon to let them float in the way you wanted them to?

Since most of the composition consists of balloons standing on the ground, there’s no possible way to make a mistake here. You fill one balloon with helium and then the other one with heavier gases. That’s it! The composition stays on the ground because the heavier balloon is working as an anchor. It was a little more complicated to make them float in the middle of a glass tank. I had to use helium and plain air so the two connected balloons would go up. Then you put them in a tank and start adding helium until the balloons descend to reach the desired level.

During your experiments you experimented with different combinations in regards to the number of balloons or the distance between the balloons. How did you decide for the one with which you applied for BLOOOM award by WARSTEINER 2016?

I had to choose only one composition so I’ve decided to apply with the simplest and most appealing one. You’ll never go wrong with a cube. By the way, it was most liked on social media, magazines, etc.

What has been the highlight of your artistic career so far?

Oh, the biggest highlights are still waiting for me.

What are your goals for your artistic career?

I'd like to be remembered as one of the greatest artists who created art not only for the sake of art itself, but rather used it as an instrument to address more important issues. In the end, I want to be someone whose actions mattered and who changed the world for the better.

Which items are indispensable for you in the creation of your artworks?

There are none. I’ve created projects using my camera, paintbrush and canvas, everyday objects, etc… I could say that most of them have been realized in my studio, so maybe it is the one that inspires me most.
October 16, 2016

In the interview:
Finalist Rahel Zaugg

A firearm transformed into a protection vest? With her sculpture “Liberator – parts of defence”, the Swiss artist Rahel Zaugg has convinced the judges of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016 and secured herself a spot among the ten finalists. Her work, which she desgined with the help of a 3D printer, consists of parts of the liberator gun, a firearm whose building plans were freely available on the internet in 2013. Topic of the work is the fine line between attack and defence. She has told us what encourages her in her work as artist.
What inspired you to your work?

The deep chasms of the internet, in which everything seems to be available, and a 3D printer.

What kind of emotions does your work evoke in the viewer?

I want to leave that to the observers themselves.
Which items are indispensable for you in the creation of your artwork?

Regarding the way I work in general: I do need a place where tools and materials are gathered that are immediately available in case I have a flash of inspiration so that they can serve for my experiments. I always feel like I have to touch and try out everything, which is why I couldn’t possibly work without my studio as a room for ideas and tests. For my work “Liberator – parts of defence”, however, I used comparably few materials.

studio

laptop

3D printer

nails, dichloromethan and the pieces printed out

sandpaper
What has been the highlight of your artistic career so far?

Receiving the chance to exhibit at BLOOOM – the converging art show is a great compliment for me and a highlight of my career so far. It’s also a little highlight for me when somebody is simply enthusiastic about my artworks. Comments like “this work is good” or “wow, this is amazing” make my heart warm up and I feel encouraged in my work.

What are your wishes for your artistic career?

I want to keep surprising myself, work as much as possible and provoke storms of enthusiasm.
October 13, 2016

In the interview:
Finalist Matthias Danberg

Modern technology, antique characters, cubist forms: Matthias Danberg’s Video “Sculptures“ immerses the viewer in a completely new, fascinating world. In our interview, the German artist tells us what inspires him for his work and why he applied for BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016.
In a nutshell: What is your work “Sculptures“ about?

The 3D animation “Sculptures” (2015-2016) opens the view into a deserted, maybe transhumanist world. The players - combinations of technology and fragments of cultural achievements – interact without entirely revealing if they are communicating in conflict or if it’s a simple exchange of information.
Why do you show especially sculptures that are inspired by classical antiquity and cubism? Why did you choose these eras?

It seems to me that the most relevant sculptural problems have been solved with the end of modernity. The solutions provided can now be integrated into art. Classical antiquity, cubist heads or technological sculptures – they all show rooms of ideas that I transform into my material. In “Sculptures“ I needed themes of upheaval, of advance for some of my characters. Antiquity, the cubism, technology – they provide what I needed, but they are very finely differentiated in their individual forms.

What inspired you to your work?

I’ve always drawn and painted something and someday I started to make animations. So inspiration as a spark of beginning has never played a role. My work rather grows out of a constantly running modus operandi, which sometimes generates something useful.
What kind of emotions will be evoked in the viewer watching your work?

I think the movie lays down different tracks. On the one hand, it is set on a high monumental level, on the other hand, it then shifts to something amusing. Thus, reactions will be ambivalent.

Which items are indispensable for you in the creation of your artworks?

The computer programs I make movies with. I have established an almost embarrassing emotional connection to some of these programs.

Why did you decide to apply for BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016? Why did you choose this particular work?

I liked the application form on the website. No annoying folder you had to print out. No DVD you had to record. No strange requirements on outdated formats. The application form for BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER embodied the claim for progressiveness it had set for itself. That may sound banal at first, but it isn’t, if you think about it a bit longer.
October 12, 2016

In the interview:
Finalist Angelika Wischermann

For her work “recht schön gelegen“ (“layed down nicely”) Angelika Wischermann from Austria lays down on grass for days. Find out here about what she thinks is in the foreground of a performance and how her love for beer inspired her to the work she submitted for the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016.
What is your inspiration for your artistic work in general? And what inspired you to design your work “recht schön gelegen”?

I’ve been working as a performance artist for years, but there’s one thing that has always bothered me: the event character and the theatrical moment that goes along with a live performance. I’ve tried many times to exclude that moment from the performance, to perform it with the tranquility it needs in my opinion. For me, the action has always been in the foreground, not my body. This is why I began asking myself more and more, if there couldn’t be a type of artistic performance that excludes my own body – or even every human body. But how could it be possible to exclude the body if the action is still in the foreground? Is it possible to engrave actions onto objects, so that they reflect the actions instead of the body? My performances deal with very long-lasting actions anyway, which are very suitable for that intention. So the body plays an important part in the creation of the artwork, but in the artwork itself it isn’t visible anymore.
What has been the highlight of your artistic career so far?

It’s difficult for me to speak of a highlight, as there have been a lot of nice and important things for me, since I’ve been making art. Exhibitions offer me the opportunity to show my artworks and to interact with the audience. Whether they take place in off-spaces, a museum or an art fair, is secondary for me, because all these places have their assets and can be used differently. Scholarships and sales, however, allow you to fully concentrate on your art without financial worries at least for some time.

Which items are indispensable for you in the creation of your artworks?

In my work, materials like water, air, a string and, most of all, my own body recur. Also, it is essential that my family and friends provide me with advice and assistance. Without their help I couldn’t have realized many of my projects.
Why did you decide to apply for BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016? Why did you choose this particular work?

Since my youth, I have loved drinking beer, I would even say that there are only very few people who love beer as much as I do. Three years ago, when I found out about the award for the first time, I couldn’t resist to participate. Therefore, I am all the more pleased to receive the chance to exhibit at the BLOOOM - because all good things come in threes.
Most beers, I have drunk in the park, sitting or lying in the grass. I have always loved to relax that way. Therefore, it was clear for me to hand in my work “recht schön gelegen” (“layed down nicely“) for the BLOOOM Award.
October 7, 2016

In the interview:
Finalist Marco Sanna

Hundreds of light switches to make music? The “We click – light switch sound cube” by Marco Sanna from Germany convinced the judges of the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016: The cube is going to be exhibited at BLOOOM – the converging art show. You can learn here from Marco himself how his artwork has come into being.
What is your inspiration for your artistic work in general? And what inspired you to design your work “We click – light switch sound cube”?

Primarily I get inspired by objects and products, their individual sounds and their effects on the environment. Thus, in my work I deal with objects and their possibilities to communicate, with the aim to transform them into something new. Regarding the sense of hearing, I often charge objects poetically by combining them with sounds from other contexts. Regarding the form, I mostly get inspired by everyday industrial items in building centres, but also in toy stores or factory buildings. Even though we use those things every day, we hardly even recognize them most of the time. A plain light switch as such doesn’t possess a deeper meaning, but - because it is such an easy way to activate something - it is important and thus became the base of the light switch sound cube. The interaction of this simple function of the light switch and the sounds offers almost infinite possibilities. This contrast keeps fascinating me until today.

What kind of sound themes are part of the cube and why?

The cube is a kind of modern music instrument that nobody has learned to play yet. I didn’t intend to imitate the sound of already existing instruments. At first, the player feels like they are making music with the sounds, but the character of the sound then transforms quickly. The dimension of the cube as a music instrument is comparably big, which I wanted to express also through the sounds as a surprise for the player. Therefore, the sounds are mostly sounds of footsteps and doors slamming, creating the impression of people walking inside the cube. Additionally, there are a lot of click-sounds in different speeds that match the sounds of the light switches. So the player presses the real light switches and the recorded click-sounds respond at a different pace. After all, the instrument as such should speak to the player to make him or her possibly smile.
Which challenges did you have to face in your work?

From an organisational point of view it was definitely challenging to obtain such a large number of light switches. Fortunately, however, I could win the company Jung as sponsors. Much more difficult was the technical aspect, as every single one of the 180 light switches had to be connected to a specific sound. For that, I needed both detailed plans and a lot of intuition, sensitivity and patience.

Which items are indispensable for you in the creation of your artworks?

A sound recorder has become an essential item for my work. In order to preserve the authenticity of objects and that way be faithful to their sounds and my style, I don’t want to take any sounds from the internet. For the composition of sounds I use a special software. It offers me a lot of freedom and doesn’t distract with pre-fabricated sound themes or parameters, so that a lot of the purity of the sounds remains. A huge amount of cables and electronics provide the objects with the energy they need.

sketchbook for ideas

rendering software

sound recording and cut

cables for brazing

working tools

speakers
Why did you decide to apply for BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016?

After having worked as a classical graphic designer for agencies and companies for a few years, I followed my inner calling and began to study communications design. Now, shortly after having obtained my diploma, my freedom lays in my freelance work, the success of which is based on hard work and perseverance but also on professional contacts and the exchange of experiences. My aim is to realize interdisciplinary and interactive projects.
To have a mentor whom I can talk to and who supports me on my way as an artist is not only calming but also really helpful. I am pleased that the BLOOOM Award offers this possibility within the endowment, which is why I decided to participate in the competition.
October 6, 2016

In the interview:
Finalist Femke Huurdeman

In her graduation project “Pippin and the Pursuits of Life”, Femke Huurdeman from the Netherlands tells the colourful bedtime story of Pippin. With her video, she secured herself a spot among the finalists of the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016. In today’s interview she explains us where she draws her ideas from.
Why did you choose the story of Pippin for your work?

I can’t really say that I choose the story since I work really intuitive and the story developed almost itself when I was working on it. I got inspired by the collection of Maaike Fransen and I always use elements from my own childhood. What I wanted to tell was an absurd little story that hopefully would make people smile a bit.

What has been the highlight of your artistic career so far?

I won a few prices at international fashion film festivals such as Berlin Fashion Film Festival, Madrid Fashion Film Festival and Milano Fashion Film Festival. That was really surprising, weird but also kinda cool at the same time.

What are your goals for your artistic career?

I would love to be signed at an international production agency in the coming years. I want to find a balance between doing commercial work and artistic/experimental work and that they can influence each other. Short term, I would like to make a music video and filming in countries other than the Netherlands, which means travelling.
Which items are indispensable for you in the creation of your artworks? Could you please send us images of those?

Actually only my always-so-curious mind and the world with everything around me. I hardly write anything down because I believe the best ideas will stay in my mind anyhow.

Why did you decide to apply for BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016?

A friend sent me a link and thought it would fit my work so I gave it a try. I like that it is open to so many disciplines and artists with different backgrounds.
October 5, 2016

In the interview:
Finalist Liat Segal

The Israeli artist Liat Segal sees the world through different eyes: Her studies in computer science and biology influence her in her perception, which is also reflected in her artworks. In the following, you can read about what she wants to express with her “Attending Machine”, her application for the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016.
What is the message of your work “Attending Machine”?

“Attending Machine” temporarily visualizes a feed of portraits taken from Facebook accounts. The participants have agreed to take part in a virtual event named ‘Donate your virtual identity to art’, only to be actualized within the machine. The work questions the possibility of personal connection and intimacy on today’s digitally connected world. The Facebook platform is used as a case study from which data is collected. The attendees’ profile images are printed and fade as time passes. The portrait is no longer eternal and is based on the way the person depicted chose to represent him or herself in the social network. One by one, the images appear and fade away. The act of printing makes each individual identity present for a moment within the masses. The ephemerality of the images poses questions: What is the point in an identity representation in the digital age and why do we so desperately want to be seen and ‘liked’ within the feed? Are we just another statistic in the virtual space?
What is your inspiration for your artistic work?

Much of my way of thinking and my inspiration comes from my scientific and technological background. I studied computer science and biology and researched social, textual and biological networks. Many times I see the world as collections of information, mathematical representations or through biological models. Today this is reflected in my art works. I am intrigued by the ways we consume and analyze information and the effects information flow has on our self-identities, personal communication, memory, choices and intimacy. The daily exposure people nowadays have to vast amounts of input and the focus span we can give to transient details in this stream. I observe social and psychological changes that occur with the inflation of online private data, data that is continually supplied and collected by and on us. I create with technologies, out of their original contexts. The final artworks consist of several dimensions; a physical structure, motion and mechanics, electronics, software and data. The act of building the machines is significant to me. I feel that the technical choices I make affect the final artwork just as much as the touch of a painter affects a painting.

Which items are indispensable for you in the creation of your artworks?

Technology is my material, whether traditional and commonly used or state-of-the-art. If I need to choose specific items I would pick a pencil and a paper along with my laptop and electronics parts that I frequently use, such as micro-controllers, sensors, motors and the list goes on...
August 12, 2016

Entries of the Week 2016 - Part 2

Each week during the application period, our editors have selected one work out of all submitted applications as their "Entry Of The Week" and presented it on our social media channels.
Get to know more about the selected works and the artists here, right now!

Hans Seidl

The experimental work „Drawinglife“ by the German artist Hans Seidl was one of our Entries of the Week. It is a homage to his beloved medium painting.
The artist addresses the topic of the matter in the microcosm which appears autarkic. It diffuses like excrescent cells or mesh, changes, pulses, disappears and appears again. Finally, it vanishes in a last act.

Wilber Aguilera Hechevarría

The artist Wilber Aguielera Hechvarria applied for the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016 with his fascinating work „The Secret“. With the installation, which is completely made of cardboard, the artist reflects on the human social behavior, which he compares with that of a herd of animals.

Johann Sturcz

© Johann Sturcz
With his work entitled „Hyacinth turning blue“ Johann Sturcz applied for the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016. The work is concerned with the digital information systems. It is about the opportunities with regard to the classical panel painting and the changing perception structures which are resulting from it.

Erik Stehmann

© Erik Stehmann
The work by the Dutch artist Erik Stehman is completely made of brushes: more precisely of 473 pieces in total.
Our editors were fascinated by the exiting story of the work: Erik initially tried to sell the brushes. Unfortunately without success. So he started to pattern them on his floor of his studio until his work „Kwastkop“ came up, our Entry of the Week.


Meike Lohmann

© Meike Lohmann
„home sweet home“ is the work of Meike Lohmann, a combination of acryl painting and embroidery. The latter one stands out as this part is described by a special materiality. Vivid and simultaneously velvet colors set highlights in the picture. They fill out, extend the work and add different layers of time tot he picture.

Holger Küper

© Holger Küper
The artist Holger Küper applied for the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016 with „Polarlicht (Polar light)“. The work is in constant and slow movement. The polyester fabric is showing wave movements which is reminiscent of polar lights.
June 24, 2016

Entries of the Week 2016 - Part 1

Each week, our editors select one work out of all submitted applications as their "Entry Of The Week" and present it on our social media channels.
Get to know more about the selected works and the artists here, right now!

Francois Knoetze

© Francois Knoetze
South-African artist Francois Knoetze designed wearable sculpures, entirely made of trash. He applied for BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER with his work „Cape Mongo“. Francois interprets the trash of our daily life as entities that are deeply shaped by out interactions with it and the memories we make with them. This way, trash is not simply discarded and disappears into meaninglessness but is able to tell its very own stories.

Oliver Bieräugel

© Oliver Bieräugel
All works by Oliver Bieräugel are constructed from paper. For BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016 he applied with his colorful work "shit is fucked". Six doughnuts, two cups and one doughnut box, all made from paper. The meaning is clear for the artist: The world around us is chaotic and awful but we can find refuge in food, art from colorful cardboard or whatever else.

Max Gehlofen

© Max Gehlofen
In his work "Endogenous Attempt" the German artist Max Geholfen uses old wooden doors, metal and plastic and creates room-filling installations. Max reflects on the dualism of the mental and physical world, which all humans are subjected to.

Look at a (German) television piece on the artist's work here.

Dominik von Winterfeld

© Dominik von Winterfeld
  • 24 hours
  • 2,5 minutes intervall
  • 576 single shots
So this is what it looks like when you stare at the sky for 24 hours... Our editors were fascinated by Dominik von Winterfeld's chronophotography and selected "Sky above Berlin" as Entry of the Week.

Uwe Mertsch

© Uwe Mertsch
The artist Uwe Mertsch applied with his work "Cloud 7" for BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER. The object is made up of various glas plates, on which a cloud has been painted with acrylics. This way, a floating pink cloud emerges, light and airy like an actual cloud.

Kira Fröse

© Kira Fröse
"I need to touch it!", this is how Kira Fröse describes her motivation to make art. Through an enthusiastic approach to flowing forms and very diverse materials, the artist created haptic experiences for the onlooker in her work "the straw that broke the camel's neck". Our editors liked her approach and selected her work as Entry of the Week.

Robin Gerris

© Robin Gerris
The sculpture "Monolith (3)" by Dutch artist Robin Geras generates a fascinating examination of the importance of an image. Robin transfers the image on concrete casts, he has created himself, and that are held together with two tightening straps, with latex paint. This way, images and memories become physical entities in his artworks.
June 20, 2016

"I never thought it possible I would ever present my works in Taiwan"

In 2012, Duesseldorf artist Johanna flammer convinced the jury of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER and the audience of the special exhibition with her work "STOLO ON WHITE 4". As winner of first place, Johanna was included into a yearlong mentorship program with Walter Gehlen, member of the judges panel and co-director and artistic director of ART.FAIR and BLOOOM. Still today, unique possibilities arise from this cooperation: For example in the beginning of May, Johanna’s works were off to Taiwan.

Johanna had the chance to present her works in the special exhibition "Made in Germany“ in the context of FORMOSA 101 Art Fair in Taiwan. Walter Gehlen curated the show and selected Johanna as one of three German artists. After the fair, the Taiwanese gallery Grand Siècle in Taipei presented the solo "SET OUT“ with works from Johanna.

Read here, what you can expect after a participation at BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016!

When Walter Gehlen came to me with the question whether I would like to show my works at Formosa 101 Art Fair in Taipei, I just couldn’t say no. Through the support of my gallerist Michael Schultz, the project was realized really fast. Finally, a solo show at gallery Grand Siècle in Taipei could also be realized.

When my paintings went on their journey to Taiwan, I got really nervous.
Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to take part in the official opening of FORMOSA 101 Art Fair but I was represented perfectly by Walter and Michael Schultz and was updated regularly through Whatsapp.

I want to send out a big THANK YOU to all participants, who dealt with the set up and organization!
Walter Gehlen and Johanna Flammer at FORMOSA 101 Art Fair.
© Johanna Flammer
© Johanna Flammer
© Johanna Flammer
© Johanna Flammer
On May 13th, I finally left for my trip as well. This way, I was able to experience the final fair day at FORMOSA 101. I was happy to spend the day in the air-conditioned fair halls due to the warm climate on Taipei and was able to look at the other exhibitors' booths on my own time.

This resulted in many great talks, interviews and meetings, with a very positive response to my works.
For the following days, I explored the island with a friend of mine. Taiwan has left many great impressions. I partikulare liked the Tarokko canyon, the Sun-Moon-Lake, the night markets, the templesl, ... and so much more.
Taiwan is definitely a trip worth taking!
Tarokko canyon
© Johanna Flammer
Night market
© Johanna Flammer
May 20th was the date that my exhibition "SET OUT" finally opened in the Taiwanese Galerie Grand Siècle. The audience's response to my works was also very positive here and some very interesting talks came about with the visitors.
The evening ended with a typically Taiwanese dinner, which was organized by the gallerist Richard Chang. I also want to thank the employees of the gallery who managed the set up and the planning in the perfect way and took care of me so well.
Official Opening "SET OUT"
Johanna Flammer and gallerist Richard Chang
© Johanna Flammer
Official opening "SET OUT"
© Walter Gehlen
Official opening "SET OUT"
© Walter Gehlen
I never thought that I would ever present my works in Taiwan and I am incredibly greatful that the team of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER and the ART.FAIR gave me the chance to become a part of this exciting project!

I am ecstatic and the trip was totally worth it ;)

Johanna
June 1st, 2016

They support the judges panel 2016:

Besides Catharina Cramer, Yasha Young and Walter Gehlen, in 2016 also Joko Winterscheidt und Prof. Dr. Stephan Berg form part of the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER jury.

Joko Winterscheidt

German TV presenter and Grimme-award winner

The ProSieben presenter, actor and art enthusiast has been awarded the Grimme-award for his show "Circus HalliGalli". As a profound expert of popular culture, Winterscheidt represents the values of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER and supports the judges panel for the fourth time with his knowledge.

© Foto: ProSieben/Arne Weychardt

Prof. Dr. Stephan Berg

Director of the Kunstmuseum Bonn

The director of the Kunstmuseum Bonn is an established expert for contemporary art, has published numerous essays and catalogues on this topic and teaches at the Braunschweig University of Art as an honorary professor since 2004. Berg also sits on various boards of directors and committees, including the purchasing committee for the contemporary art collection of the Federal Republic of Germany.

© Foto: Prof. Dr. Stephan Berg
April 22nd, 2016

"A one of a kind trip"

Last year, the guys from Kalypso wowed the judges and more than 35,000 visitors with Negua. With their interactive installation, Alessandro de Matteis, Michael Baumann and Philipp Dreber won the second place of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER and therewith, among other prizes, a trip to Art Paris Art Fair. In their exclusive guest entry for our blog, they tell you all about inspiring art, travel guidance from a prehistoric trunked animal and exciting developments of their artistic careers.

Read on to learn what can await you at BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016!

Experiencing the art metropolis in a frenzy of the senses

As winners of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER, we were invited, to travel to the French capital for a visit to Art Paris Art Fair.
© Emmanuel Nguyen Ngoc
© Kalypso
© Kalypso
© Kalypso
Barely having arrived at the Grand Palais, we were overwhelmed by the impressive glass glass dome. Naturally, we immediately lost ourselves in a sensual overload of all exhibited artworks. This shouldn't have come as a surprise, since each member of our collective comes from a different artistic profession and everyone follows their own specific interests. This made it all the more exciting, to show the others your personal favorites and exchange about all individual impressions. In this way it was extremely fulfilling to look at an art fair with a set of six eyes.
© Kalypso
© Kalypso
© Kalypso
© Kalypso
© Kalypso
© Kalypso
© Kalypso
© Kalypso
© Kalypso
Our friendly travel companion at Art Paris was the prehistoric trunk animal Anadol.
Anadol has provided us with great contacts, most importantly a reunion with the co-director of ART.FAIR, Andreas Lohaus, with whom we talked extensively about dinosaurs and new projects while Anadol talked about us with another dinosaur.
Anadol at the Grand Palais
© Kalypso
With Andreas Lohaus
© Andreas Lohaus
Anadol met another dino
© Kalypso
Curator and member of the judges panel of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER, Yasha Young, is currently supporting us heavily, so that NEGUA can be realized again in a prominent manner. We are put to quite the challenge once again but maybe we can therewith fulfill our dream of experiencing the Northern Lights. [Note of the editor: The proposed exhibition may take place in Iceland.] Simultaneously, we are currently developing the installation CARA, which deals with the audience's dream worlds. Once again, the visitors are asked to become active and join us in a special symbiosis.

As inspiring Art Paris Art Fair on its own has been; the entire city is currently in a specific political moment which did not remain hidden from us during our explorations. At the Place de la République we landed in a very political Pairs. Right next to the fresh memories of the terrorist attacks at the foot of the monument, hundreds of French people got together in ongoing camps and sang their songs until the early morning hours, accompanied by an improvised orchestra.

After the final brush stroke

Whoever sends three artists to an international art fair, can expect something to happen that exceeds any given staff outing. We experienced four amazing days in the French metropolis for four day, a time which seemed to pass way too fast. Louvre, Centre Pompidou, climbing the Tour Eiffel, a tour on the Seine - we could have easily enjoyed Paris for at least two more weeks. Not only on our way back, we got wound up in a solid brainstorm and talked until our heads became hot from discussions about what KALYPSO will realize in the future.

We thank the organizers of a one of a kind trip, the universe and the entire rest!

KALYPSO.rocks
© Kalypso
April 20, 2016

BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER goes Israel

Last year, Israeli artist Liat Livni secured herself the first place of BLOOOM AWARD BY WARSTEINER. She therewith won a yearlong mentoring, in which she will now plan the next important steps concerning her career as an artist with her mentor, member of the judges panel, Walter Gehlen. Herein she will benefit from his network and experiences.

In the context of this mentoring, they now met in Liat's hometown Tel Aviv, visited her studio and the Fresh Paint Art Fair, where Liat's works were on display and they also discovered the local art scene together.

Check out impressions of their meeting here!

Liat Livni and Walter Gehlen in her studio
© Walter Gehlen
New works by Liat
© Walter Gehlen
New works by Liat
© Walter Gehlen
Fresh Paint Art Fair in Tel Aviv
Works by Liat Livni at Fresh Paint Art Fair, Tel Aviv
© Walter Gehlen

Do you also want to be part of an exclusive mentoring program?
Then then apply here for BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2016 and get your creative career started!

March 21, 2016

From Berlin, through Tokyo to Miami and finally to Havanna.

SAMIRA ELAGOZ, WINNER OF BLOOOM AWARD BY WARSTEINER 2014, TELLS US ALL ABOUT HER WINNING TRIP TO ART BASEL MIAMI BEACH WITH MEMBER OF THE JUDGES PANEL, WALTER GEHLEN, AND HER CURRENT PROJECTS.

READ ON NOW TO FIND OUT WHAT TO EXPECT AT BLOOOM AWARD BY WARSTEINER 2016!

Art Basel was three months away when I left Amsterdam. It would be the final stop of my trek across continents, first stop Berlin, then Tokyo, and a month in NYC. In Berlin I was collecting material for my new artwork, in Tokyo organizing it, in New York trying to present it to a first audience and in Miami trying to package it up in a handshake.

When I arrived in Miami, Walter and Maribel [Note of the editors: Maribel accompanied Samira and Walter as a translator.] were waiting for me. We went to a really nice hotel, my room was gorgeous, big. Images of beach girls, margaritas, Ferrari's, flamingos, luxury boats, and Miami Vice rushed through my head.
© Walter Gehlen
I had only recently become aware of the fact that the Internet is repurposing feminist art, and could see 4th wave feminism babes and assorted hot girl Instagram stuff being heavily featured at Art Basel. Although my work has been described as such before, there were some people of notoriety in the field that labeled my work as directly pertaining to the 4th wave feminist movement. It's been interesting to consider my work in this light, to see where the views coincide, and where they differ. I realized I'd have to be able to present my work in one sentence, make it concise and to the point, somehow adding unseen but perceptible depth. A kind of verbal business card.

2 years ago I was still unsure of my work and skill. Humbly describing aspects as being amateur luck, thinking my first film was some kind of a fluke. But I've since expanded my thoughts and views immensely, writing essays and musings on aspects of my craft and vision, I developed my art into something that is truly mine. As I learn to understand myself, I know what I want to make, show, and achieve with my work, and I'm excited to share it with the world.
© Walter Gehlen
My work about meeting strangers, for which I won BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER, usually used Craigslist, but in NYC I started working on another project where I cast people from Tinder. Walter and Maribel had been helping me with selecting those with potential - my “taste advisors”.

  • Note of the editors: Samira won the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2014 for her work “Four Kings”. The non-budget film documents her encounters with a number of strangers who had responded to the following Craigslist ad: “READ ME! I’m a 24 year-old girl making a short documentary film. I’m looking for strangers. The concept is that I meet you at your place and film how we get to know each other. We handshake and the camera is on the table for both of us to use. Msg me if you want to meet :)”

On the last day I met up with a stranger. Walter and Mirabel drove me to the hotel he worked at. He took me to the hotel rooftop, which had an amazing view. I had to climb a ladder to get there, which was a bit daunting, but he promised to catch me if I fell, but also, to be a gentleman and not to look up my skirt as I climbed up. Which made me slightly question his ability to respond to any falling emergency that might have been imminent. We shook hands, exchanged some pleasantries and proceeded to film for twenty minutes under the setting sun.

  • Note of the editors: She has since continued to work on pieces that showcase intimate encounters with strangers, specifically kissing-scenes. Her current work will soon be presented officially.

I'll miss the pink blue Miami neon nights… so many logos and photo op settings. Flash cars, fancy clothes, hot girls, and more pretentious nonsense. Beautiful, albeit slightly insipid. I had a lot of fun being in that world for a moment.
We then rushed to the airport. Excited to see what delight Havana had to offer. Oh yeah, Walter is taking me to Havana!

And we’re off to Cuba!

Tinder was not a thing in Cuba, so the three of us went to a bar, on the prowl to cast a person that would look good in another scene. Luckily Maribel spoke Spanish, or I'm not sure what the guy would have thought when I tried to non verbally communicate that we should go somewhere quiet to film us. As I pointed guys out, Mirabel was giving me very helpful comments such as; "No not him, he's crazy." We found a prospect and Walter located a set, a gorgeous Oldsmobile in my favorite color, seafoam-green. We took a cab to the location, and drove along the beach, water splashing over the moor. Around us everything was derelict and crumbly. We were sure we would be robbed at some point. Walter was kind enough to film this encounter. So there we ride, Walter our camera guy, Maribel our lifeline and trusted translator, and me acting dreamy and cute to a strange boy clearly unsure about what is going on or why I am in charge.

Havana felt exciting to all of us! We were nervously intrigued, with the atmosphere quite suspicious. There was a strange sense of calm paranoia, a cinematic awareness of being in a shady place.
It was an amazing journey, I learned a lot about myself and the art I want to make. I sincerely and profusely thank Walter for his wit and immutable enthusiasm, Maribel for her level head and unflinching poise in the face of adversity and travel emergency, and of course the whole BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER team, who made this possible. :)

Until we meet again,
xoxo Samira
December 16th, 2015

“Winning BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2015 means the art world’s recognition of my work and the opportunity to showcase my art to a new, global audience.”

Liat Livni has received quite a bit of attention since she wowed the judges with her intricate wood-work “Jerusalem Boulevard, Jaffa” and came in as the winner of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2015! From art sales during the special exhibition at BLOOOM – the converging art show, to interviews with design and lifestyle blogs WeHeart and Highsnobiety to new projects, Liat has been super busy since the award ceremony of the international art competition.

But who is Liat, what inspires her, how does she define being an artist and what does winning BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER mean to her personally? Get to know her in today’s special article!

Her work “Jerusalem Boulevard, Jaffa” secured her the first place of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2015, standing out in a mass of more than 1,500 applications from 75 countries. Now, Liat Livni will enjoy a one-year mentorship by Walter Gehlen, member of the judges panel and director and artistic director of ART.FAIR and BLOOOM, and a trip to Art Basel Miami Beach 2016.
With incredible attention to detail, the Israeli artist has created an intricate artwork made from 30 layers of veneer. The piece depicts a section of Jerusalem Boulevard in Jaffa as viewed across three different time periods at once. The past is represented by Zaki Khalaf House and the palm trees planted for the boulevard’s inauguration. The houses numbered 1 and 11 are from the present day, while Livni suggests a restored theatre façade for the future period. The sculpture is built up from an architectural top section and an abstract lower half in which the wood hangs like roots of a disinterred plant.
When taking in the work, one cannot help but admire the patience and manual labor that must have gone into the creation of the sculpture. In discussion with the lifestyle blog WeHeart, Liat admitted: “To be sure, patience is not something I am short of, and I think it is a good trait… not only when creating art.” Nevertheless, compulsive manual labor should never be the main focus of art, Liat says. Art should always also carry a deeper meaning, a message that lifts it from simply being an aesthetic object to a work of art that is able to touch the onlooker.

So if the message is intrinsic to an object becoming a piece of art, what does it mean to Liat, to be an artist? To her, being an artist is not something you choose to be but something that is always part of you and defines your personality as such: “It’s something deep inside you that you cannot escape.” (Liat in interview with lifestyle blog Highsnobiety) For Liat, it is this passion that has informed her studies and even when she opted to study a more “practical” form of art in Fashion Design, she quickly realized that this was not where her true passion lay and eventually continued to finish her Bachelor’s and Master’s in Fine Arts.
Liat’s passion and inner motivation for being an artist has carried her all over the world. She has had the opportunity to take part in numerous artists in residence programs in the US, Germany and Asia.
And now, she has won BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER… Upon being asked, what winning this award means to her, Liat replied: “For me, it means recognition. The art world’s recognition of my work and the opportunity to showcase my art to a new, global audience. It also gives me a feeling of contentment and validation that the path I have chosen is appreciated.” (Highsnobiety interview)

For Liat, the award ceremony was only the beginning. Still during the days of the special exhibition, her work was sold to a private collector, she happily told us. And things are looking great for Liat right now as well. She can look forward to a year-long mentorship program, new connections within the art world and exciting exhibition projects.
With all these exciting developments unfolding right now, we wondered where Liat herself would like to see her works in the future. To this, she replied: “Hopefully in a public space where more people could enjoy it. I would love to be surprised by where it will be.” (WeHeart interview)
We cannot wait to see where Liat’s career will take her next and we are happy to accompany her and support her development!
December 16th, 2015

“I am pleased that Walter will gladly act as my ambassador."

As the winner of the third place of this year's BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER, Mark Swysen won a one day mentoring with Walter Gehlen, member of the judges panel and director and artistic director of ART.FAIR and BLOOOM.
The two of them met up in Mark's studio in Antwerp, Belgium in late November to discuss his works, his future career and how best to position himself in the art world.

Today, Mark tells us all about his mentoring day in a special guest piece:

On November 25th 2015 Walter Gehlen visited me in my studio in Antwerp. I was quite pleased to notice that he was impressed by some of my artworks that - to him - were a new discovery. After thoroughly examining my work in progress we proceeded into discussing my work and career and how to further develop it. Walter did not question the content or the subjects of my work. These topics are the core of an artist’s identity.
© Walter Gehlen
  • About the work:
Our talk about the visual aspects and design of my artefacts and the reflection on his perception of them enabled me to sharpen my personal view on my work. Walter made a great effort at structurizing different aspects, trying to summarize them into one global diagram.

He particularly made me aware of the distinction between my installations on a museum scale and pieces intended for gallery shows. To me art is a means of communicating ideas, and this purpose is best served in a specific art space or museum. Therefore my main interest as an artist goes to those huge spatial installations, partially constructed from “poor” everyday objects that I snatch out of their usual context, deconstruct and re-assemble in order to charge them with new layers of meaning. I had already noticed that their “roughness” makes some gallerists feel uncomfortable. Walter pointed out that most galleries prefer neatly polished, less dust-attracting works without too many technical parts that might need repairing at some time. From the point of view of an art seller his second comment about the size of some of my works being simply too large for most private homes was obvious.

Walter drew this discord as a balance where the girder is my integrity with its sharp focus on the simple and precise translation of a concept into the choice of the materials and the moulding of the forms. On one side are the works intended for museum exhibitions. They could be even larger and more spatial than they already are right now: I am thinking in sizes up to 5 m³ for single pieces or room-filling installations up to more than 200 m². They need to be overwhelming, exciting, an experience, even an adventure to the visitor whilst remaining intellectually interesting and defiant with respect to content. On the other end of the scale - equally in balance on my integrity - are the works intended for gallery shows to be bought by private collectors. It became clear to me that the commercial aspect of my work needs more reflexion. The gallery brand “Mark Swysen” needs equally intense artworks but with more thought for the size and the buying environment.

“In the best of worlds, the one end of the scale should lead to status, fame and glory; the other to financial success.” (Walter Gehlen)
© Walter Gehlen
  • About the career:
For this purpose Walter came up with a second diagram that includes the actors in the art scene revolving around exhibitions as the centre of interest: press, curators, other artists, juries, galleries and collectors. All of them have an effect on one another.

It was already very clear to me that for the evolution of any artist’s career the curators who decide whom they will show in their museums are of primary importance. Yet an artist cannot simply walk up to them: he needs to be discovered by the curators through his exhibited work. Because of the number of exhibitions and the dispersion of locations, most of them will not be seen by the curators the artist would have wanted to impress. Hence the development of an artist career needs ambassadors! All the above mentioned other actors in the game are valid for this purpose. When they are sincerely convinced of an artist’s qualities, they are able to open doors by bringing him under the attention of possibly interested curators.

Further consideration of this matter after Walter had left made me realise that from a successful connection between artist and curator, not only the introducee benefits. All parties involved benefit: everyone upgrades his status within his field of expertise as an expert. Personally I experienced that when introducing one my colleague finalists at the BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER to a Belgian gallery I work with: they were very thankful to discover an artist they did not yet know who fits in their program perfectly.

Naturally I was particularly pleased when Walter Gehlen pointed out that he would gladly act as one of my ambassadors...
Knowing that he has good contacts with some major institutions around Köln makes me hopeful.

Mark Swysen
November 09, 2015

In the interview:
The finalists of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2015

The finalists of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2015 convinced the judges with their artworks, prevailed against more than 1,500 applicants from 75 countries and had the chance to present their work in front of more than 35,000 visitors during BLOOOM - the converging art show.

Now, the arts, culture and lifestyle blog We Heart got together with some of them for an exclusive interview series.
We present these interviews to you, here:

The heavenly works by Mark Swysen

The Belgian artist came in as third place of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2015. In the interview with We Heart, he talks about his work, the underlying philosophy and he explains what is the deal with all of the umbrellas.
Mark Swysen, garden of eden: reconsiderations on the concept of the original sin
Mark Swysen, garden of eden: reconsiderations on the concept of the original sin
Mark Swysen, post-anthropocene reboot of the ecosystem

Lost innocence - An interview with Erik Porstmann

Erik Porstmann's work convey disturbing messages with familiar-looking children's books illustrations. With his series "Kinderbilder (Childs' Images)" he made it into the top 10 finalists of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2015.

With We Heart, he talked about the connection of the beautiful and gruesome and the question, whether art needs to be difficult, in order to be good.
Erik Porstmann, Kinderbilder
Erik Porstmann, Kinderbilder
Erik Porstmann, Kinderbilder

Are all artists liars?! -
Kati von Schwerin on art and truth

In her artwork "I knew Pinocchio when he wasn't famous", Kati von Schwerin sarcastically deals with her own role as an artist and says that all artists are always also liars, who cannot be trusted.
With this special piece of lies, she made it into the top 10 of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2015. Now, she explained her rather ambivalent relation to art and truth.
Kati von Schwerin, I knew Pinocchio when he wasn't famous
Kati von Schwerin, Licht bin ich, ach wäre ich doch Nacht

Kati von Schwerin, art my dear


Liat Livni (winner 2015) about patience and art, that touches people

With her detailed wood work "Jerusalem Boulevard, Jaffa", Liat convinced the judges panel of BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2015 and secured the first place of the international art competition.
With We Heart , the Israeli artist talked about her current projects, the art of patience and the goal of touching people.
Liat Livni, The princess tower

Liat Livni, Oniya house flower

Liat Livni, Jerusalem Boulevard, Jaffa (Detail)

BLOOOM Award by WARSTEINER 2017

Thanks for more than 2,300 applications in 2017 - a new record!

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