Five questions to Otto Baum

Five questions to Otto Baum

How can you make a large wall surface symmetrical in a short time? Otto Baum asks himself this question over and over again in front of his 3.6x4.5 m studio wall in Berlin and constantly develops new Ottotools from it. New and exclusive works by Otto are now available at New & Abstract.

How did you get into art?

Since the beginning of 2000 I am part of the art collective KLUB7 from Halle and Berlin. A few years before I came into contact with graffiti and made street art. After some experience in these areas, I started my studies in 2008 at the Berlin Weißensee School of Art and graduated in 2013 in the field of textile and surface design.

How would you describe your style? What makes your work special?

For some time I have been working on various ways to play large walls with pattern-like shapes. I build myself painting tools that I then test on a 4.60m long x 3.60 high studio wall in Berlin Lichtenberg. These painting tools I call #Ottotools, which usually consist of a few screws, flat brushes and strips. The idea came from the fact that I create large facade paintings with the art collective KLUB7, usually it is so that each of us can create larger areas. So I started to build certain painting tools myself to implement individual motifs or patterns with it.

How do you go about developing your work?

Building the painting tools is a very important process for me, equivalent to working with paint on the wall. Usually I have an idea in mind, then I think about how I design the painting tool for it and build with the necessary materials in my workshop. Only then do I test out all the possibilities on my practice wall. With the #Ottotools there are several possibilities to create large-scale pattern worlds.

Who or what influences you?

I am fascinated by mechanical processes, to think them further and to build drawing apparatuses from them. The act of using this tool to draw complex motifs that I would otherwise never have created, these are processes that inspire me.

Make us curious. What is planned next?

A next interesting and new work will be that I combine several painting tools with each other. Again on the wall, only this time on sheets of paper. There will be a small edition consisting of 32 sheets. For this I have built three different #Ottotools that I successively dip in different colors and lead on the papers.

Copyright first photo Raviva Nsiama

Learn more about Otto Baum here at N&A and anytime on Instagram.