Franz Klainsek’s influences are profound while his questions remain primal and instinctive: What are we? Who are we? Why are we here?
Here we find a man who carves his own path. Undeterred, sincere and irreverent. What makes him, him? Franz is a truth-seeker. His self curated universe a testament of his self-effacing interaction with the world. The work he propagates balances the essence of humanity with ancient techniques, driven by ritualistic rhythms. The product at hand is canvas, installation, endurance pieces, and copper. The process is raw, deliberate, pensive and experimental. Matter is forged at the benevolent hands of its willful creator, a committed conduit, ready to propagate his heritage.
Franz Klainsek is self taught American artist of Cuban / Austrian descent. Leaning on his roots for the core of each production, the work is physical and emotional -- it resides in the space between body and mind, feeling and thought. The creation process; an extension of his human form, lost in time where movement becomes weightless and the pieces dictate their own journey.
In his most recent body of work, Klainsek uses an axe to create work on copper.
“Nothing is more beautiful than an accident of nature.” — Franz Klainsek
Klainsek’s creation is driven from the power of natural force. The moment in which creation comes from destruction. In full commitment and trust, the artist devotes himself to the cycle of death and rebirth to which life in the material world is bound. As he strikes the copper with his axe, the work emerges. The works reveal the depth of simplicity — the raw cuts within the copper plane; a declaration that from this space of openness, the end becomes the beginning. In this perfect unfolding, each strike is a birth. The inspiration came from Klainsek’s commitment to making the work come “alive”, taking the relationship with the work beyond the surface. Through a process that is both physical and emotional, the plane transcends into a living object.
“We are born with fresh eyes to only have them tainted. All we have learned begins to dissolve as we get closer to the essence of our being.
The past does not exist, neither does the future. Every moment is a chance to start anew. A new beginning… Rebirth.
Thank you to the man who forged this steal; with it, I’ve created this body of work. ”
— Franz Klainsek
Canvas; the abstract works that create a contrast through the use of freely applied strokes and controlled fine lines of patterns and intricate movements of pointillism. It is the contrast of free strokes and detail, the conscious and the subconscious, the feeling and the observation that create the dance between the two processes, bringing the paintings to life.
Klainsek had honed his signature painting style of obsessive movements of pointillism, scribbling, elusive symbols and characters initially in 2013. On his return from his first residence deep within the Amazon Jungle of Peru, where he had spent months in isolation, practicing shamanism with the Shipibo Indians. The obsessive work on a wooden table was Franz’s journal; the art was the language in which he had chosen to express his inner rumblings. (“Thru My Veins” 2014)
“I feel while work, I try not to think— it is the expression of what I feel in the moment.”
The language created — the patterns that he calls Thru My Veins - has since been the dominant element within his work on canvas.
The work is a raw and direct interpretation of Klainsek’s studies of the subconscious mind, life experiences to date, and the strong desire to journey on into further understanding Truth.
Klainsek addresses societal programming and its systematic effect on the human mind.
Large scale paintings and installations often include references to man’s struggle to find Truth in the "programmed" society and his identification with mind.
His endurance art pieces bring awareness to societal issues that "cause suffering or keep us from being free." Enthralled by the journey of suffering leading to enlightenment, he uses art as a vehicle to express his Truth, seeing the work as an eye opener, "an awakening", to what is overseen, rejected, or "numbed."
“We live in a society where nobody knows themselves. Everybody has this obsessive identification with mind being who they are. With all the lies we’ve been told and all the lies we tell ourselves that keeps us from feeling and experiencing the truth, the end result being nobody knows who they really are. My work is a commitment to peeling the layers of lies that keep me from being and knowing my true self. I keep digging deeper and deeper into what’s real and what’s not. Breaking free from the lies to find myself closer and closer to being free. My work is an expression of Truth.”
If we observe the essence of ancient spiritual practices, Shamanism or Voodoo, there is an understanding that everything in the universe is linked spiritually. His pieces are linked in a similar manner via rhythms, materials, encrypted messages within, names. Everything is connected and has been carefully thought out. “Stylized objects representing words and sounds exist around us everywhere, yet most have not deciphered them yet. Break free, exhale, dissolve… now nothing remains, only evidence of the spirit world; raw artistry will haunt the ages.”
A predefined intention drives the work. Colliding the raw structure of spontaneity and calculated choice into oneness, Klainsek creates an experience. The work lives in the space of balance and imbalance, always striving towards unity.
A recurring subject throughout the work are Nails of gold.
Nails carry a history of representing suffering leading to enlightenment. These references can be found in Biblical, Buddhist and Hindu records.
Franz uses nails as a means to represent the strength of the human spirit; the journey of a modern day warrior as he breaks free from societal suffering.
Raw, yet polished to perfection, Nails find their way into the paintings for an extraordinary marriage. Franz signs his work with 3 Gold nails, individually hand-carved with his signature, year of creation and the rousing reminder: “Break Free.”
"Live in Truth. May you rest in Freedom.”
Franz Klainsek lives and works in New York City.