COLLABORATION IN ART

Collaboration in fine arts is very rare in our egocentered rational and functional society. Every artist wants to be unique in a selfish way. Our days, it is rare that two independent artists join to create a work of art together out of pure enthusiasm.

 

I have collaborated with Brô in two large murals 96 PARADISE - LAND OF MEN, OF TREES, BIRDS AND SHIPS and 97 THE MIRACULOUS DRAUGHT

 

The second mural 97 THE MIRACULOUS DRAUGHT we decided not to paint directly on the walls but on panels which could be moved away, when the old hunting pavilion in which we painted it would be destroyed which was the case some years later.

 

The house was the old hunting pavilion of Napoleon III situated on the border of the Bois de Vincennes in Paris where Napoleon met with his mistress, la comtesse de Castiglione. I lived and painted in this pavilion as guest of the Dumage family for about ten years. When this pavilion was destroyed in the 1960s, the wall on which the mural was painted was cut in pieces by Prof. Licata, then transported to America in a container and reassembled in a Synagogue on Long Island where it is today.

 

The mural I painted with Brô on pressed fibre board which we carried ourselves through Paris with hand chart. We used the casien-technique which we prepared ourselves. We bought every day fresh milk, let it turn sour and curdle, let the liquid whey drop through a cheesecloth to obtain cottage cheese which we then mixed with unslaked lime.

 

This way, we obtained a glue with a strong pungent ammoniac smell with which we mixed the powder colours.

 

We divided the work in the way that Brô mostly designed the forms like a genius with quickly drawn lines, and I painstakingly coloured between the lines slowly and in tedious work, though Brô, from time to time, changed colours himself and I added drawings.

 

In that time, I made a deal with Brô. Brô painted almond-shaped eyes high up in the face with nose, rivers and ship-mouth in circular-shaped heads. I painted soul-trees that means trees which had a halo of glory like human beings and saints. Trees where you could see through as if they were made out of spheres of glass. These trees I had seen in the drawings of Walter Kampmann. Brô gave me the right to paint his faces, and I gave Brô the right to paint my “soul-trees”.

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