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The world of color is a treasure trove for the human soul. Over the centuries, artists and researchers have explored the transformative effects of color on the human mind. Among them, Josef Albers, a renowned artist and art theorist of the 20th century, holds a special place. Based on my own experience as a child with epilepsy, I recall how colors transformed my world into an ocean of calm and well-being.

Color as personal healing

As a child with epilepsy, my world was characterized by sudden seizures and unpredictable emotional outbursts. In the midst of this chaos, I found refuge in the world of color. This showed me early on that colors could have an immediate impact on emotional well-being. For this reason, even if for therapeutic reasons, my artistic journey began in my early teens. Artists such as Ellsworth Kelly, Roy Lichtenstein, Keith Haring, David Hockney & Josef Albers showed me that color and impact had a special power on me. Josef Albers' famous series "Homage to the Square" is also a testament to his fascination with the effect of color on the psyche of the viewer. Albers' art therapy approach was based on the idea that colors create an individual resonance and thus offer the possibility of releasing emotional blockages. Similar to the Rorschach method, colors can bring out deep-seated emotions and bring unconscious conflicts to light.

Pop Shop, 1987 by Keith Haring

Pool made with paper and blue ink for book, 1980 by David Hockney

Color as a communicative medium

However, the therapeutic effects of color go beyond personal healing. Colors can also serve as a powerful communicative medium. They speak a universal language that transcends cultural and linguistic boundaries. They have the power to address emotions directly and communicate on a deeper, intuitive level. Red can convey passion and energy, blue often represents calm and peace, while green is associated with nature and freshness. Each color has its own symbolic meaning, which is influenced by cultural contexts and personal experiences.

Red White, 1962 by Ellsworth Kelly

Often the use of color in art and design is used to convey messages in a subtle yet powerful way. The mood of an image or design can be profoundly affected by the purposeful use of certain color combinations, putting the viewer in a particular emotional state. For example, a cool blue can create a calming atmosphere, while a bright yellow attracts attention and conveys energy. In the combination of both colors, we create our own essential state, which gives us our own & unique approach, depending on our background and past. In art therapy this idea is used to help patients express their feelings and inner conflicts. At the same time it directs the focus to essential and deeply rooted emotions.

Hommage to the square, 1970 by Josef Albers

In conclusion, i can of course only speak for myself and my experience with color, but in a world full of everyday noise, color is a unique refuge. In today's fast-paced society, we need places of retreat that stimulate us on essential levels. For me, these places of retreat are color and space and i am grateful to have discovered them.

embrace minimalism.

In response to the dominance of abstract expressionism in the art world, the Minimalism art movement emerged in the 1960s. Artists such as Sol LeWitt, Agnes Martin, Ellsworth Kelly, and Donald Judd experimented with this technique and created a new art form that is still considered groundbreaking today. The minimalist approach to art allowed the viewer to focus solely on the essentials and omit superfluous details. By focusing on the essentials, reducing to simple geometric shapes and monochromatic areas of color, it challenges the viewer to concentrate on what is really important and to leave out unnecessary details. In the course of this, color plays a central role in Minimalism and is used as a means to evoke emotions and achieve an effect on the viewer.

Josef Albers, pioneer of color field painting, emphasized that colors should be considered as autonomous and concrete entities. For him, color was not a mere ingredient, but an independent means of expressing perception and emotion. Colors have the power to evoke deep emotions and memories in us. They can evoke positive feelings such as happiness, calm and peace, but also negative feelings such as fear, stress and sadness.

Ellsworth Kelly, a master of monochromatic color fields, created works such as "Red, Yellow, Blue III" that illustrate the effect of color on human perception. By subtly combining hues and intensities, he created a visual rhythm and a certain tension in the viewer. The minimalist approach to his art allowed the viewer to focus solely on the colors and their effect on the perception of the artwork, creating a deeper connection between the viewer and the art.

Red, Yellow, Blue III, 1966 by Ellsworth Kelly

Donald Judd, on the other hand, used colors as part of a larger concept that explored the relationship between artwork, space, and viewer. His installations, such as "Untitled" (1967), consist of identical geometric shapes designed in different colors that restructure the space. By playing with the viewer's perception and altering the space, Judd creates an immersive experience for the viewer that challenges their perspective and allows them to engage with the artwork in new ways.

Untitled, 1967 by Donald Judd

In summary, the use of pure colors can have a profound effect on consciousness. In today's fast-paced world, where we are constantly surrounded by media noise and our attention span is shorter than ever, abstract minimalism and the use of pure colors can serve as a deceleration from everyday life. At the same time, direct engagement with color and space can unlock our deepest memories, meaning that it is not the artwork that is the focus of the moment, but rather the initial spark that triggers a reaction. This confrontation between man & art is what I am personally set out for.

embrace minimalism.

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