As we approach warmer weather, Sketchbook travels to refreshing Alpine regions. Thanks to visual artist Timothy Hofmann, Sketchbook, now fairly filled with artworks, has visited a Swiss city of Lugano, the biggest city of Ticino canton – famous for its relaxed atmosphere, gorgeous mountains and homonymous lake.
Timothy Hofmann was born in 1987 in Lugano. He graduated Visual Arts at the Academy of Design in Geneva. In 2013 he won a Reward for young artists awarded by Chiasso Cultural Centre, and as of 2014 he diligently works on a graphic novel Crows+Mice whose subject is an imaginary image of future Switzerland.
Restless and exploratory spirit of this young artist perceives art as a unique medium for modelling new forms of interpersonal communication. In his work he draws inspiration primarily from great personalities such as H.R. Giger, David Shrigley, Louise Bourgeois and Ai Weiwei. As a comic book artist he is especially inspired by Bill Watterson, Hugo Pratt and Frank Miller.
Timothy Hofmann tackles personal visions of the world and life in all their dualities. He often elaborates topics such as identity, routine and correlation between reality and fiction, where he often finds a splice of paradoxes and contrasts that usually cause the unforeseeable dynamics of life. The starting point of his works is not aesthetics, but content, and during creative process two dominant emotions – determination and frustration – interchange in the artist. Most often, Timothy expresses in the medium of drawing, his creative process being based on determination and risk taking, leaving the safe zone of expected results and stepping into unknown area. Author frequently combines media to arrive at new and unexpected results, while letting the artwork itself define his creative journey in his exploratory process.
At the moment, Timothy is preferably using pencil and rapidograph, while keeping his mind active and fresh by simultaneously working on several projects. When he wants to step back from current projects, he turns to recycled materials, especially electronic devices which he disassembles and then puts together into something new.
By his peculiar artistic expression, Timothy Hofmann wants to encourage thought, start a discussion, make a reflection, as well as raise a smile or provoke a spontaneous laughter. His artwork for Sketchbook Station is substantially connected with his artistic engagement, but expression itself is very different. In contrast to former, dominantly figurative approach to expounding motives, Timothy has decided to interpret a well-known topic through visual abstraction. The intent was to represent his region within the framework of the issue of (state) borders, which is both timeless and very up to date. As a base, Timothy has used his own photos of rocks and mountains as a certain cliché tied with Switzerland. After that, he has vectored photos and printed them. The next step was to redraw lines in order to create an abstract composition reminding of a satellite image.
By his artistic contribution to Sketchbook Station, Timothy Hofmann wanted to point out the paradox of contemporary world dominated by globalization and growing interconnectedness of countries, but in it we simultaneously witness a radical assertion of borders and raising of walls between countries. Timothy emphasizes that Switzerland is not an exception here, rather a perfect example of such duality – at the same time unique, but also a copy of other neighbouring countries.
While you try to imagine Swiss Alps in an abstract depiction, we invite you to ask yourselves is globalization bringing people nearer to each other or does it separate them even further by apparent suspension of borders? Are we losing our identity with globalization or are we fostering connections between peoples?
You can find out more about Timothy Hofmann’s art on his web and FB page:
We also invite you to meet other participants in Sketchbook Station project:
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