My work usually starts with looking for some kind of time-related concept. After all, I am really interested in topics that pertain to helping us structure our lives, more specifically how we manage day-to-day moments and measure time.
Therefore, I started to work on the piece “Angenommen ich werde 50” (“Suppose I reach my 50th birthday”) in 2016. Back then, I watched an incredible movie entitled “Zur Sache, Schätzchen” (“Go for It, Baby”) which is from 1968. There is a scene in the move in which the maincharacter draws 18,250 crosses on his wall, each one symbolizes a day and he removes one a day until he turns 50. I was quite inspired by the idea of being able to organize your life almost as a coordinate system. This led to the creation of this triptych with 18,250 lines, which provides you with an idea of what 50 years of life looks like when depicted on a wall as the number of days.
Eventually, I showed this work to a friend, who teaches physics at Leipzig University. He informed me that my work is reminiscent of something referred to as the string theory, where physics tries to use this theory as a “global form”. According to the theory, everything is made up of strings, which subsequently swing and vibrate. In fact, if you stand in front of my work and focus on one point, then you do have the impression that everything is moving. However, viewing the composition in its entirety provides you witha true sense of calmness, completion, while highlighting the different layers and theharmonic sound of the graphic structure and painting.
Generally, I start by preparing the canvas with special acrylic layers and rabbit skin glue to achieve an elastic and durable dark foundation. The next step is to apply tape to the surface and cut every single string to the right length. Afterwards, I administer some transparent layers, thus creating clear edges. The final step is to paint in oil on the last two to four layers, which creates a subtle depth and also serves as a pleasant contrast. Most of the time, I use for frames a color called “Fleischfarbe” (flesh color), which I have used for approximately six years. The color can be found in circa 90 percent of my paintings and is my homage to artists who have influenced my work.Frank Moll