It is only in the darkness that German painter Daniel Maria Thurau’s abstract plants begin to grow rampant and bring their surroundings to life. The vivid blossoms and stalks make their way from the fantasy world into reality, their ragged forms almost grotesquely arching from one dimension to another.
Just as the plants casually poke into our consciousness from their nocturnal parallel world, Thurau’s pictures organically grow from within. The paintings do not appear strictly conceived nor beholden to composition. Bright turquoise wraps around a steamy violet, citrus coloured buds and pink blossoms are luminous amidst deep blue. Dusk becomes night, the deep blue sky becomes a vast ocean. Using a symbolic, almost comic visual language, Thurau guides viewers into his own fantasy world and ultimately into the collective unconscious.
Thurau incorporates the impulses of art history, seemingly incidentally reminding us of Max Ernst’s Landscapes and the emotionally charged work of Edvard Munch. It is impossible to define or classify into genres, as Thurau likes to bring contrasting movements together. “I try to reconcile elite and popular culture by treating both honestly and using humour as a link between them,” the artist explains. Using acrylics, pastels, oils, and tempera paints, he creates a symbolic journey through art history that finds an inexplicable outlet in the viewer’s deepest subconscious.
Daniel Maria Thurau studied Illustration at Norwich University College of the Arts and continued to hone his skills through a degree in Painting at the University of Fine Arts in Hamburg. Thurau has exhibited his work at international art fairs including Art Frankfurt and viennAfair. The colourful Utopia Now series was recently in the Feinkunst Krüger gallery in Hamburg. The artist lives and works in Berlin.