Reiner Heidorn is a German artist who refuses to conform to trends and that’s good so since he has his very own vision. His oil paintings are an amazing blend of his favourite worlds, that of expressionism and japanese manga, creating a beautifully captivating underwater universe.
KALTBLUT: How did you start painting? Was it something you always wanted to do?
Reiner: I started painting somewhere in the 80´s, can´t really remember the reason, but I soon had my first exhibitions in local bars and galleries, mostly with drawings and some aquarelles. As I got the whole equipment of paper, pencils, brushes, ink and everything, there was no way back; soon I got comfortable with oil colors, rented an atelier and stayed with them till today. In fact, I LOVE oil colors, I´m a painter, see, not an illustrator, no virtuoso with realistic buildings or animals. The imagery in my paintings is a direct part of the texture. Oil painting is like bringing colored clay on a canvas.
KALTBLUT: I see some pop elements but also some classic stuff, where do you get inspiration from?
Reiner: Growing up in Germany, you get confronted with great historic or contemporary artists. I´m really impressed by Martin Kippenberger, Dieter Roth and Georg Baselitz. But I´m also very fond of the Japanese manga scene, so I do kind of a conjunction between expressionism and Asian manga style.
KALTBLUT: Every technique you use is different. What advantages do you see in each?
Reiner: I´ve gone many years intensely into painting, all I use is oil – the older paintings have a common expressionism texture, later I experimented a lot with photo-overpaintings (solely own, featureless digital photoprints) and transparent foil, to create my own style of german expressionism without copying predecessors or doing the stereotype of the current scene. My latest achievement in my new works – despite of the figures – is the technique of painting a whole figure in an ancient manner, include the background and then blur the main parts complete away. The act of painting begins the moment I wipe away all the flattering contours, remove all “fine art”- like parts and the beauty of faces and bodys; leaving only a dismal notion of humanity. I use scrubbers, bath towels and lots of turpentine, to create this dreamlike under water effect.
Reiner: The art scene here is mainly ruled by the market, like in every country. In Germany they focus especially on the “Leipziger Schule”, invented by a clever galerist in Berlin, Harry Klein. Everyone shows and sells paintings in the style of Neo Rauch. For years I’ve been waiting for the disappearance of the “Leipziger Schule”; and now there is a new course called “New Leipziger Schule”; I have to commit suicide… Every country has its own genius artists and many, many followers. Paintings like cars and washing powder – they have to be marketed.
Interview by Amanda M. Jansson