Interview: Carola Thiele
Luca Curci talks with Carola Thiele during THE SKIN PROJECT, first appointment of CANVAS Art Fair 2020 at THE LINE Contemporary Art Space in London.
I was born in the middle of the deepest winter of 1966 in Zossen, on the edge of the Berlin Wall. The first profession I learned was toolmaker, a completely uncreative, though beautiful profession. In order not to burst, I dedicated myself to music composition and painting on the side. In 1997 the first of three sons was born. In order not to burst again, I wrote and illustrated children’s books in addition to the duties of a mother and wife. They were published by Engelsdorfer Verlag. In 2004 I found my real feel-good art: Surrealism. With a two-year correspondence course with Willes Meinhardt (HAF Hamburg) I supplemented my knowledge of technique and image composition in free painting. A following correspondence course to become a multimedia designer allows me to use the possibilities of digital art. Surrealism and Metaphysical Painting have remained, the circle closes for me in my artistic statement again and again, and I am allowed to work unpredictably. For me every work ends with an unrealistic dream world that tells a story. My motto is: ”Art is like a dream that you have dreamed before”. Today I have exhibitions on three continents and can show art awards, excellent certificates and the participation in an Artists in residence.
Luca Curci – What’s your background?
Carola Thiele – My background is a solid family. The experiences and developments of my three sons and my husband are the issues that affect me most. However, the visual arts have become the strongest form of expression for me. My work as an author of illustrated children’s books and composer/musician has receded into the background.
LC – What is the experience that has influenced your work the most?
CT – The strongest experience that influenced me was waking up in a dictatorship, when I realized that the GDR was taking away the freedom of my thoughts and my development. I was trapped at the mercy of this society. I did not want to become a socialist artist.
LC – Which subject are you working on?
CT – The theme of my works is the inevitable connection with the whole. To represent the connection with any part of our environment. Whether death, invisible or alive. The need to give respect and attention to the not immediately visible but tangible part of our environment makes me create my works in this way. It contains social mockery/criticism as well as a tree that only becomes an emotional being because I give it a face.
LC – Which is the role the artist plays in the society? and the contemporary art?
CT – The Artist is a producer, and the script is written in his environment. That’s why I don’t like commissioned painting. The client’s point of view doesn’t have to be mine and not everyone can stand truth. A waste of time! However, the artist intensifies the state of society, he takes up the themes that make up society and consolidates them. Whereas the role of the contemporary art is the spy. The social media make it possible. He sees more, feels more and questions ways of acting. He is not satisfied with the open, visible surface. This freedom is important and must not be censored.
LC – What is your creative process like?
CT – There are two types of procedures. The first is the digital process, which allows me to design and sketch my work on the screen. The fact that the “paint” dries immediately is fantastic. The second type allows me to reach for the brush and just start. Without sketching, just with white canvas, brush, paint and me. With very loud music and a “Do not disturb” sign. The theme appears in the moment, mostly brought about by a nightly dream. Pictures that burn themselves into the head land on the canvas. It is not a complete work, but a person, a situation, a feeling or simply a theme. Therefore my saying: “Art is like a dream you have dreamed before”. It is bad when I lose the thread because I let myself be disturbed. Then I often continue working months later.
LC – Do visitors’ suggestions enrich yourself and your art?
CT – Of course, I greedily absorb every utterance of the visitor. If a dialogue arises for the viewer, I have reached him. I can add his emotions and views to my own experiences. They open new ways for me and teach me how to deal with other experiences and opinions. For me, this is like a gift, and that’s why I am an artist.
LC – In which way the artwork presented in our exhibition is connected with the festival’s theme?
CT – The sentence in the description of THE SKIN PROJECT is decisive: “The human body is a changing system that connects us with other bodies and spaces in order to perceive the surrounding reality”. This coincides with my view of the existence of the human being. Fears, wishes and needs determine the development of each individual. The work “Generational Change” is for me a good example for the inner development of a human being. A child who becomes aware of his existence in society and should take responsibility for his actions and his future. The symbolic key stands for the first step into kindergarten, school, or for the recognition that every action has consequences.
LC – We were attracted by your last artistic production, has the artwork presented been created for the festival or as a part of preexisting works?
CT – Although both works were created in 2020, they were not created specifically for the theme of the festival. I would like to claim clairvoyant abilities for myself, but no one will believe me, including me.
LC – What do you think about ITSLIQUID platform?
CT – I am impressed by ITSLIQUID Group, because it is one of those platforms that without hesitation dive deep into the art market and serve both the art lover and the artist. Currently there are about 18.000 visual artists in Germany. I feel honored that I was offered this exhibition.
LC – Did you enjoy cooperating with us?
CT – Yes, the personal support is very professional. There are many galleries and art projects abroad. The selection that the artist makes depends on this very professionalism.
LC – What are your suggestions about our services? Is there something more we can provide to artists?
CT – I have no suggestion.