Björn was born in Nürnberg, Germany in 1980. At 8 years old, he moved with his family to the Philippines and spent the rest of his childhood in Southeast Asia, including Cambodia and Malaysia. He has been drawing for as long as he can remember, as nearly everything that interested him became an inspiration for an image. He moved to Oklahoma in 2000 and graduated from the University of Central Oklahoma with a Bachelor in Fine Art and Education in 2005. Holding his first solo exhibit at IAO Gallery in Oklahoma City in 2006, he continued to regularly show his work, along with teaching high school art for twelve years. In 2019 he earned his MFA in painting from the University at Albany in New York and now lives in Munich, Germany.
I'm inspired by the amazing creativity of humanity, whether that is applied to science, music, or any other endeavor. I am also inspired by the creative process itself because of the transformational effect it has on my daily life. To find a creative solution for a painting is endlessly satisfying.
Describe your creative process.
I work on multiple paintings at once, and always start in an improvisational manner. As the images start to take form I devise creative solutions to complete each improvisation with a deliberately placed set of visual elements. I am always experimenting with methods and materials, so that exploration is a constantly evolving part of the process as well.
What are 3 words that best describe your work?
Hopeful - Honest - Courageous
Who are some artists that have influenced your work?
David Reed, Chris Wool, Carrie Moyer, Jackie Saccoccio, Gerhard Righter, Anselm Kiefer, Gustav Klimt, Egon Schiele.
What is the most important tool when creating your work?
I use such a wide variety of tools, but the humble house painting brush is what I return to most.
What is the best piece of advice you have been given?
One of my professors encouraged me to take a hard look at my work in order to continually do away with the more ordinary aspects of what I was creating, and constantly develop the most unusual ones.
Where do you go for inspiration?
I dive into my record collection and pick up an art book. I also enjoy visiting museums.