Born and raised in post World War II Vienna, Austria, I attended Medical School at the University of Vienna, which, lucky for me, turned out to be the “second best art school in town”. Our professors made us copy human anatomy and pathology from huge blackboards throughout Medical School. After graduation I specialized in Anatomic Pathology which demands good manual talents and recognition of visual patterns. In 1976 I received a fellowship to Stanford University in California. I decided to stay in CA and do a residency training in psychiatry. I ended up working for the State of CA and the County of Los Angeles for indigent patients, and also as an assistant clinical professor at the University of CA in Los Angeles.
Later in life I was finally able to attend a private art school in Los Angeles and had my first art exhibitions there which gave me the courage to continue painting. In 2002 I moved to Santa Fe where I attended the Community College for several years and study with private teachers. I continued having art shows in New Mexico, Los Angeles, New York, and Berlin (Germany) and now in Albuquerque where I have lived since 2012.
The Themes of my paintings come out of my experience as a psychoanalytically trained psychiatrist and from my social and political worldviews, as well as from my baroque-Catholic upbringing in Vienna, Austria, from the fairytales of my childhood, and the cultural experience of a European in America. The strongest influence on my art comes from the Viennese School of Fantastic Realism and from Friedrich Hundertwasser, from surrealism, German expressionism, Gustav Klimt, and some young contemporary New York artists such as Aaron Olshan and Sarah Bedford.
I like to tell stories with my paintings, which often turn out to be whimsical, tragic-comical, grotesque, about abnormal, surrealist mental conditions, celebrating metamorphoses and transformations, human suffering and dissolution. Many themes are about aging, disappearance of organic and inorganic forms and their reappearance in altered shapes. For that reason I like to paint in multiple layers and sometimes overpaint everything in the end.
I used to paint mostly figuratively in oil, acrylic, and pastels. In the last years I have been painting more abstract or a mixture of abstract with scattered realistic elements of all imaginable objects. I also experiment with printmaking, encaustic work, tonal charcoal, ink and lately egg tempera.