Interview: Franziska Becher
Luca Curci talks with Franziska Becher during THE EXTENDED BODY 2020 at THE LINE Contemporary Art Space in London.
Franziska Becher was born in 1988 in Annaberg-Buchholz, Saxony/Erzgebirge. She grew up in a small village near the German/Czech border, in the von Annaberg-Buchholz, Crottendorf. Since she was a child, she was enthusiastic about painting and drawing. Being left-handed, it was not easy for her in the 90s. Several times they tried to retrain her, but without success. She was devoted to art at an early age. She drew and painted. From 2004 she was a member of the Marienberger Kunstverein. There she was taught among other things in pottery. Under the Marienberger Kunstverein she was trained in graphic works, drawing, sculpture until 2008. From 2008 to 2014 she studied free art at the Bauhaus University Weimar. There she was trained in conceptual works. In 2014 she completed her studies with the degree in Fine Arts (Diploma Artist). Since 2011 she was first an intern and then a freelancer at the ACC Galerie Weimar, where she was curatorial assistant 2014-2016 and cultural assistant. Franziska Becher’s interests are wide-ranging and cannot be pinned down to a specific Art Genre.
Luca Curci – How is being an artist nowadays?
Franziska Becher – We are currently in a time of transformation in which we do not yet know what will be and also what this will mean for free creation. Being an artist in the present is anything but easy, it is due to many factors. On the one hand, it is due to the fact that there is no view of necessity, because art is a cultural and formative factor for society and therefore existential for our existence. In my opinion, this should not be swept under the carpet or even forgotten. Art is also there when you don’t see it. I see it as my task, especially for the moment, to assert myself. Even if the means are limited.
LC – What are you currently working on?
FB – At the moment I’m working on very different projects at the same time, as always. It changes between digital work, figurative work, photography and working with paper and pencil. I really like everything and everything is alternating. At the moment I am creating photographs and etchings.
LC – What is your creative process like?
FB – Mostly ideas capture me. They are just suddenly there when I think about one thing for a longer time what could be done better. I then ask myself how can I express this idea. The art of my creative process is to create a reduction of all the possibilities out of the palette of possibilities, which makes a universal statement that is feasible for me in its implementation, sometimes I am dependent on help that I do not refuse. Thereby I do not limit myself to any medium but only to what is feasible.
LC – Which art themes do you pursue? What is your preferred subject, if there is any?
FB – Identity, sociology, politics, otherwise it is all very broad. Theme is actually everything and anything that makes you think and think further and question the finality of things, I find that important as a theme.
LC – Did your style change over the years? In which way?
FB – Yes, I have gained foresight and knowledge in many craftsmanship areas, which expands my work, and this continues to do so. I have become more concrete, perhaps a little more radical. But I don’t have a fixed style, because it’s not limited to one or two media. But I believe that I have a recognition value that is becoming more and more concrete or even tired of only one means of expression. But that also depends on the choice.
LC – In which way the artwork presented in our exhibition is connected with the festival’s theme?
FB – I was interested in the topic “Extended Body”. I applied because I think my work is well presented and appropriate, the extension of the human body and what that means. The photography “EARTHING, 2019”: Leonardo da Vinci’s magnificent representation of “Vitruvian Man”, which depicts a man according to the idealistic proportions formulated by the ancient architect and engineer Vitruvius. The reach of this man, continuing ‘the man’ the extension of the arms and the radius, the circle was an inspiration to me. “There must be a hand and foot” in what you do? In my photograph, you see that implied. the feet and hands of an infant. The little hands holding the feet tightly, floating in the infinite blue water. It is not recognizable as a girl. The freedom of the mind and the limitation of our body in a gracefulness dependent on the environment and people. The photography “WHO KILLED THE EGG LYING MILK BEARING WOLLY SOW?” shows the slaughtered mythical creature of the woolly milk sow and is intended to depict the extended body in relation to our outside world, environment and earth. This is what we stand for with our bodies, we act, human action is an EXTENDED BODY and a task and this is expanding and developing, but hopefully not into self-dissolution, because it is not called inexhaustibility. The still life of the slaughtered wool-milk sow represents cool and dead what is left of us but also what is left of the world if we spread the Extended Body too far, respectively fade out the natural limitations of our being.
LC – Where do you find your inspiration?
FB – I find most inspiration in the markets. This sounds strange but I’ll try to explain it with an example: I walk through supermarkets, furniture stores or clothing stores or thrift stores and just look at the variety of products, no matter where from, no matter how much, the important thing is a certain selection and the whole people. The diversity of fabrics, colours, patterns, looking at products, touching them and the exchange of people about them. That gives me inspiration. I don’t buy anything, I just look at things and then leave after some time. For me the markets/shops are like an intermediate world, I go in and I am in another world. I also think that the people there are different, I think it is also because of the lighting that is made for products, the sun is made for living beings. All this gives me inspiration. Otherwise I like to sit on a bench in pedestrian areas with an ice cream and watch people or go out into nature and watch them, little beetles and birds, the rustling of the trees and the smell. It makes me humble and I see many wonders, it gives inspiration and knowledge.
LC – Do you think ITSLIQUID GROUP can represent an opportunity for artists?
FB – For me as an artist it is the chance that my work will be seen. Art be made accessible to the viewer. In whatever form, performance, painting, video and so on. This is a claim of art in my opinion. Not a personality cult but the making visible of a work of art for the viewer in direct contact, not only on the screen.
LC – Would you suggest a collaboration with us? What do you think about our services?
FB – The communication as well as the work on site in the exhibition space and the cooperation with the artist is professional. So I would also like to participate in an exhibition again.
LC – What is your idea of ITSLIQUID GROUP?
FB – What I like about ITSLIQUID is that it is more or less self-sustaining. Or carries everyone, everyone. At least that is my idea. Each artist is given a choice of how much he or she wants to present and what, it has to fit the theme. The artist gives his work and supports the instiution with the budget he has available, in relation to the criteria of the artwork. Of course it is also controlled by possession. If I own a lot of money, I have the possibility to develop myself more than just presenting a single work or none at all. But this is exactly what makes our current system visible to me. Because that’s the way it is, not only in art but also in many other branches and everybody has to live and finance themselves. I think that’s a good choice of approach.