Inside the Studio

Christoph Schrein

What are the major themes you pursue in your work?

For a long time I explored the space between painting and sculpture in my work. I was influenced by artists such as Anish Kapoor, Katharina Grosse, and Gerhard Richter. Painting is the oldest medium of all art disciplines, and it is difficult and complex to develop new aspects or renew existing approaches within its boundaries.

The driving force behind my work has always been experimenting and finding new ways. I’m interested in the way we interpret visual information and extract meaning, especially when we see something new that did not exist in our predefined concepts of categorization. That’s why I decided to paint abstractly. It allows me to examine spaces of possibility beyond our encounter with reality.

I modulate oil paint on transparent acrylic glass with a specifically developed technique. My monochrome paintings appear to be in a flowing motion. The effect is caused by the superposition of wave-shaped, light-reflecting color streams that create a complex illusion of space and depth. The works invite viewers to stay and discover, and to induce a moment of contemplation and slowing down.

What was the best advice given to you as an artist?

Focus on what is necessary for the picture. It’s about finding the core of the picture and not to revolve around it.

Prefer to work with music or in silence?

I’ve realized that I no longer hear the music when I work in a concentrated state. Therefore, I do not hear so much music in the studio.

If you could only have one piece of art in your life, what would it be?

Cloud Gate by Anish Kapoor. I am fascinated by this work because it alters and manipulates the surrounding space. It acts as a vibrant center, like a distortion of time.

Who are your favorite writers?

I like John Irving very much, because of his bizarre plot twists and character drawings. But there are many other authors that I like, such as Safran Foer, Murakami, Hornby, Schamoni, Meyerhoff…

About the Author

Katherine Henning is Senior Associate Curator at Saatchi Art. Need help finding art? Contact her via our free Art Advisory service here.