In the studio with Tom Król. About the creation of his artist collection
Exclusive artist edition with Tom Król
The artist Tom Król (*1991 in Cologne, lives and works in Berlin) has designed an exclusive artist edition of our classic collection in transparent.
Król studied at the Hochschule für Gestaltung Offenbach, the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf with Tal R and Andreas Schulze as well as the Académie royale des Beaux-Arts de Bruxelles. Recently, his works have been shown in international galleries and institutions, including the Neuer Aachener Kunstverein.
Tom Król's works are oriented towards the aesthetics of the everyday. Symbols, gestures and signs appear in his painterly works, which move on the border between painterly abstraction and objects and figures from his immediate reality of life. The drawings and symbols, which are applied by hand with a black brushstroke to the surface of the naturally glazed ceramics in Portugal by Zeichner:innen, also speak his typical visual language. In addition to the implied signs, the symbol of the eye enters into a direct dialogue with the viewer.
In addition to our artist edition, Tom Król has designed five hand-turned vases with his drawings and paintings and designed them by hand in our Ehrenfeld ceramic space. Each of the five vases is unique in form and design.
We talked to Tom about the collaboration and the ideas behind his art.
How did you get into art?
That was actually quite clear. I've always drawn and eventually started studying to be an illustrator.
When Heiner Blum, my professor at the HfG Offenbach, motivated me to work bigger and in color, the path to painting was not far. Painting opened up new perspectives on art for me and I started working with installations, sound, various printing techniques and photography, among other things. However, my point of view always remained that of a painter.
Would you tell something about yourself and your artistic approach in a few sentences?
Painting offers me the opportunity to create something that can be read, but not necessarily verbalized. This is my basic drive. In this, there is no scheme according to which I proceed. My pictures arise when they have to arise. The best approach for me is to have time. Not to feel pressure to work on a specific project, but to really live with the images. Giving myself and them the time and space to develop is the most important thing in this process.
Drawing always plays a big role for me in this.
Usually you work in a relatively classical way, for example painting on canvas. How did you feel about working with ceramics as a material? What makes this new material as a pictorial ground different for you from canvas for your drawings?
For me, while working with ceramics, it was particularly interesting to think spatially. The canvas or paper is flat. By working with and on a three-dimensional body, new aspects became important.
This challenged me, but also allowed me to approach it with a new freedom. I found the aspect of time in dealing with ceramics particularly interesting: how many and which processing phases of the clay are needed between the individual steps of shaping, firing, painting and glazing. In comparison, painting is more spontaneous, but perhaps more careless steps are taken. Working with clay requires much more planning.
The forms in your work straddle the line between abstraction and figuration - what inspires you? Where do you get the ideas for your individual yet very specific forms?
Over the last few years of constantly recording and processing everyday impressions, a code, a style, or whatever you want to call it, has unfolded in me. From this I help myself. New things flow in, forms from the past emerge again and again. The concrete inspiration and the drive to continue researching are for me the interpersonal interactions of everyday life. Little things trigger me and the idea for the next painting is there.
Which is your favorite place here in Cologne?
There are many. But when I stand on the banks of the Rhine at the Südbrücke, I feel at home.
Do you have a current exhibition tip for us?
Over the last few years, I've been lucky enough to see great exhibitions in many places in Europe.
Of course, there are favorites. One of my favorite places in Cologne is the Kolumba Museum in the city center and of course the gallery "fiebach, minninger" on Venloerstraße.
In my elected home Berlin I haven't found such a place yet, but "Das Kleine Grosz Museum" in Schöneberg is a great oasis in the middle of the hectic, noisy city. Abroad, it would probably be the sculpture garden of the "Middelheimmuseum" near Antwerp or the museum "Dhondt-Dhaenens" near Sint-Martens-Latem in Belgium.
The last exhibition that really excited me was the work show of Michel Majerus at KW Institute for Contemporary Art in Berlin Mitte (unfortunately it is already over).