History is formed by the people, those who have power and those without power. Each one of us makes history.
Because of my Calvinistic upbringing, I was trained to think that what you do has to have a purpose.
What does the artist do? He draws connections. He ties the invisible threads between things. He dives into history, be it the history of mankind, the geological history of the Earth or the beginning and end of the manifest cosmos.
Not content, but the road the artist takes, is the interesting part.
As an artist you have to find something that deeply interests you. It's not enough to make art that is about art, to look at Matisse and Picasso and say, how can I paint like them? You have to be obsessed by something that can't come out in any other way, then the other things -- the skill and technique -- will follow.
History speaks to artists. It changes the artist's thinking and is constantly reshaping it into different and unexpected images.
Buying art is not understanding art.
Art really is something very difficult. It is difficult to make, and it is sometimes difficult for the viewer to understand. It is difficult to work out what is art and what is not art.
I am interested in reconstructing symbols. It's about connecting with an older knowledge and trying to discover continuities in why we search for heaven.
When, at the end of the 1960s, I became interested in the Nazi era, it was a taboo subject in Germany. No one spoke about it anymore, no more in my house than anywhere else.
Art is longing. You never arrive, but you keep going in the hope that you will.
I am of the opinion that there are artists and non-artists. I think that this is the way it always was and always will be. I do not believe that we are in the center of the world. It is possible that there are gods who do not relate to human. As an artist, I believe that it is possible to depict these forces.
The reason for this project comes from my childhood, that is clear to me. I did not have any toys. So, I played in the bricks of ruined buildings around me and with which I built houses.
I was interested in transcendence from a very early age. I was interested in what was over there, what was behind life. So when I had my first communion I was very disappointed. I had expected something amazing and surprising and spiritual. Instead all I got was a bicycle. That wasn't what I was after at all.
Art is difficult. It's not entertainment.
If I do something that depresses, it's not because I'm depressed, but because political life and history are depressing.
I believe in empty spaces; they're the most wonderful thing.
But I believe above all that I wanted to build the palace of my memory, because my memory is my only homeland.
Ruins, for me, are the beginning. With the debris, you can construct new ideas. They are symbols of a beginning.
Life is an illusion. I am held together in the nothingness by art.