Anne Schwalbe

My studio is my creative home. I really have a lot of ideas here. Here and also in my home/office in Berlin. I feel that I am really connected to spaces.

What I do in one sentence: Trying to realize all the ideas I have – mostly photography but I also experiment with sewing, ceramics, plant dyeing, grey cardboard – there is so much!

Why I didn’t get a proper job: That is a question I also ask myself sometimes. Especially when I have to pay invoices for my house reconstruction. But in general I am happy with what I am doing. Also I needed quite some time to find out what I want or to be brave enough to do what I am really interested in. I started studying photography when I was 30, before that I studied German Language and Cultural Studies and worked part-time as a florist for some years. I think I also did not get a proper job because I get frustrated and angry or unsatisfied when I do things I am not interested in. I was searching for some years. And a “proper job” was not the result of that search.

An artwork I dream of and I would get accomplished if space, time and money were abundant: I’m thinking of simple pieces – for instance a stoneware jug or bowl. A piece of wood. A piece of great rough linen fabric.

Artists, I have on my watch list (and why): I find it more interesting to see the things made by different crafts persons. Recently I’ve read that in Japanese culture never has been a clear distinction between art and craft or design. A thought I find very interesting. When I see the work of a potter or a weaver I am often more touched than by a piece of art. What is art?

I am afraid of War. Lies. Hate.

How I want to be buried resp. words I want to be written on my tombstone: I do not think about my tombstone yet. But I try to live the way that I do not regret. I think you more regret things you have not done or even tried than the things that you tried but which did not work out so well. Also I think I was very much influenced as a teenager by the movie “Dead Poets Society”. Especially from the quote of Henry David Thoreau in Walden: “I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.”