and the human urge of finding a place in the world.
and the human urge of finding a place in the world.
Painting the Inside
My main goal when making art is to create something that sparks resonance; first within me, during the creation process. Then within viewers of the finished pieces. If my artworks don’t reach you emotionally, I did something wrong — or we simply don’t speak the same language.
My art shows people who want to find a place in the world. I eventually understood that this sentence applies to trauma survivors; so in addition to other aspects, my work is about individuals and their paths through trauma recovery, casting a wide, dim net around topics of consciousness: from dream interpretation to psychoanalysis, from individual to social and political dynamics. The works repeatedly focus on psychological symptoms: body dissociation, depersonalization, amnesia, fatigue, compulsions, etc.
clear access to their bodies, memories and emotions
Such symptoms often cannot be clearly depicted apart from clichés, because they don’t exist in, or offer clear imagery: the truth of a person is not merely revealed by their surface. Certain of my works therefore appear to show everyday scenes: someone may be sleeping, pottering, planting, fishing; the images do not articulate the reason for these actions, or whether they are done consciously or subconsciously – but they often appear symbolically charged.
The sitter’s introspective gaze indicates an inner communication to which viewers cannot listen. In this respect, viewers tend to be excluded from certain aspects and dynamics of my works – like trauma survivors, who, due to dissociation, sometimes are denied clear access to their bodies, memories and emotions.
I programmed videogames at Rockstar Games before studying Fine Arts at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna, which influenced the topic of my PhD thesis (painting and digital technologies). I live and work in Vienna/Austria, and collaborate with galleries in Austria, Germany and Spain.
I curated over thirty exhibitions since co-managing the transmedial art space mo.ë, and am the author of the ongoing “Handbook for Emerging Artists (over fourty chapters are online, with over 60k views as of 2023).
I hold lectures and workshops, most recently at “Klasse für Alle” at the University of Applied Arts — over the years, this happened at places like the Royal Institute of Art (Stockholm), Gage Academy of Art (Seattle), University of Northern Colorado, University of Applied Arts Vienna, Academy of Fine Arts Vienna, or the New Rochelle High School (New York).
Next to my art practice, I am active in various projects that aim to make art world dynamics transparent, and local art scenes more welcoming.
- The Conscious Artist Membership, an ongoing platform to discuss art and artmaking realistically and holistically.
- The “Kunst und Klischee” podcast, with guests like Marlene Streeruwitz, Roland Düringer, Voodoo Jürgens, Sara Ostertag, and many others.
- The YouTube channel “On Doubt in Creative Practices”, which accumulated over 8 million views and over 60k watch minutes by 2022)
I studied Fine Arts at the Academy of Fine Arts, Vienna — in the classes of Daniel Richter, Harun Farocki and Gunter Damisch (2006-2011). Painting, film and graphics, reflecting my curiosity on various image creation and interrogation methods.
Throughout these years I eventually focused on storytelling within the medium of painting; I also began my Doctoral Thesis (PhD) on this topic, which changed into an ontological interrogation about “Painting and Digital Technologies” (Elisabeth von Samsonow, Felicitas Thun-Hohenstein, 2011-2015).
with multi-layered digital processes.
The PhD thesis led to my curatorial work and to art writing — but also got me to expand my analog works to include digital processes. My final drawings and paintings rarely show their underlying digital roots; these are often based on my self-coded prototyping environment which enables image and video abstractions (based on the Processing programming environment), and a robotic plotting device to be used for rendering certain parts onto paper or canvas. This results in an analog figuration that’s natively based in geometric abstraction – while keeping an analog exterior.
Conscious Artist Membership
I want artists to succeed in their career and lives. As a result, I started structuring my knowledge on the art world into the freely available Handbook for Emerging Artists, and offered affordable art coaching for individuals, groups and institutions.
In 2023 I started the Conscious Artist Membership — a networking and knowledge exchange platform for everyone who cares about discussing art and art making realistically and holistically.
The program is meant for an international audience, offers two group calls per month, plus access to a private discussion group. It’s not based on me giving lectures, but on everyone sharing their experiences.
This way, the Conscious Artist Membership helps you understand the connections between work and network, and how to find a holistic balance between these poles — your balance. One that helps you stay focused producing work, and to connect that work with the world.