The Friedensengel is one of the most iconic monuments in Munich and one of the most romantic places in town. Now artist Philipp Frank has turned this location into an innovative, must-see art destination, bringing life to the so-called Pegelhaus in its vicinity with 3D video projections. In perfect harmony with the painted motifs, he has created a fantastic, dreamlike vision in constant motion.
IRMA was impressed and talked to the artist about what drives and inspires him. Even if you are not an artist yourself, let his tips for getting your creativity flow stimulate you. Life is three-dimensional and so are the many sources of inspiration.
IRMA was impressed and talked to the artist about what drives and inspires him. Even if you are not an artist yourself, let his tips for getting your creativity flow stimulate you and help you find beauty. Life is three-dimensional and so are the many sources of inspiration.
IRMA: Tell us about the initial idea of your art project below the Friedensengel right above the Isarauen in Munich.
PHILIPP FRANK: I wanted to create a living mural installation with a inspirational connection between a building and its environment. In this case I took various natural elements from the surroundings (the Isar river, trees, roots, leafs, stones, colour schemes), abstracted and re-arranged them in a illustrative way. It resulted in a very detailed and pattern-like design. On some spots I included direct links to nature to intensify the connection. They can only be discovered from certain angles and require the spectators interaction with the painting.
As nature never stands still the the mural needed some motion as well to bring it to life. This was achieved by the use of motion design 3D projection mapping. Flowing and mesmerizing elements went hand in hand with the painted shapes. Imaginative, inspiring and full of movement. A dream like scenery. Watch the video and get a glimpse of this magical happening.
IRMA: What made you start using graffiti for the first time to express your creativity?
PHILIPP FRANK: I grew up in a small village next to Munich and went to school in the city center. I had to ride the S-train into the city every day. It was in the mid-eighties and I noticed a growing number of colourful paintings along the tracks and on the trains. I didn’t understand what it was but I liked the colours and passenger reactions. There was a key moment one summer afternoon: Sitting inside of one of those painted trains with the windows fully covered with paint. The colours where glowing from the sunrays. It looked like a abstract church mosaic window. I was so blown away and decided that one day I have to make something similar, too. Some years later, from the very first moment I pressed on a spray can I immediately knew: this will accompany my whole life…
IRMA: How does graffiti art influence your other work, for example the advertisement jobs you have been creating for Absolut Vodka?
PHILIPP FRANK: The graphic design works are not necessarily affected by that, it really depends on the project. But my illustrative work and installations are influenced by those graffiti roots, the way I use colours, outlines, shapes, tools, size and space. The other way around all this graphic design experience flows back into my way of creating my artworks as well as developing ideas and concepts.
IRMA: Do you ever have that moment of not getting an idea before you start a new project? And if so, how do you delete that thought?
PHILIPP FRANK: Mostly I have too many ideas and it is more about how to reduce to the best one for that specific project. I always scribble first, before taking it over to the computer later. It is a good and easy way to start any project. Just let your hand flow. Later pick out and rework the most promising ones. Things will develop automatically from there on.
IRMA: How does an environment inspire you?
PHILIPP FRANK: Everything around me is inspiring in some way. I like to listen and observe. See the beauty in the positive and the negative. There are endless possibilities. Of course some cities or places are more inspiring than others, but in the end creativity comes from inside of you.
IRMA: In which medium do you like to start with an idea?
PHILIPP FRANK: I always start to scribble with a pencil on paper. Its a fast way to sketch out various ideas and immediately see what might work or not.
IRMA: What was the most important thing you learned in art school?
PHILIPP FRANK: Hmmm…. maybe only one word: look and feel.
IRMA: Your favorite book right now?
PHILIPP FRANK: At the moment I am reading: “Aufwachen – dein Leben wartet” by Lynn Grabhorn.
IRMA: The place you keep going back to?
PHILIPP FRANK: Nature, especially the forests.