Radio Interview with Claud Hesse | 2015 (Italian)


'Maurizio Collino' award for the best artistic research won at Paratissima with the project DNA-PORTRAIT and presentation of the book 'UNO Arte - Musica - Fisica quantistica' published by EAI Edizioni Accademiche Italiane

Radio Interview with Claud Hesse | 2014 (Italian)


Presentation of the artist, the DNA-PORTRAIT project and the levitating sculpture PLENUM

Interview with Claud Hesse
Famiglia Artistica Milanese

Claud Hesse is the artist of the (IN) VISIBLE, lives and works between Italy and Berlin and creates incredible artworks!!!
9 11 2016

Claud Hesse is a long-time friend of Famiglia Artistica Milanese. In November 2015, she shared with us all her joy for the "Maurizio Collino" prize for best Artistic research — won by her project: DNA-PORTRAIT seen in Turin in the exhibition "The Sound Of Silence".

Claud Hesse is the artist of the (IN) VISIBLE, lives and works between Italy and Berlin and creates incredible works. We met her and this event was narrated in a long interview that we attach to this brief summary to give way to all interested to deepen the knowledge with her and with her artistic expression of research and avant-garde.

Her artistic research is aimed at investigating nature, man, as an integral part of it, and reality itself starting from an overturned point of view.
In a sort of "Copernican revolution" of the image and the collective imagination Claud investigates reality starting from the infinitely small to overturn it in the macro and finding with it unexpected mathematical and philosophical connections.

Her predilection for the square and cubic form derives from the study of the Rules of the Golden Section, the "Divine proportion" as the ancient Greeks used to call it, which unites all nature. In all the nature, in fact, both microcosm and macrocosm, a specific mathematical proportion recurs.

1. Which concept does your artistic research gravitate around?

My artistic research is aimed at investigating the nature, the man, as an integral part of it, and the reality itself starting from an overturned point of view.

In a sort of Copernican revolution of the image and the collective imagination, I investigate the reality starting from the infinitely small to overturn it in the macro and finding unexpected mathematical and philosophical connections.

I try, therefore, to turn the invisible into visible by constantly searching for that Fil Rouge that unites the various facets of reality, both the microcosm and the macrocosm, and that, transforming itself into the mythical thread of Ariadne, tries to rejoin a UNICUM.

Just as the theoretical physicists around the world are looking for a mathematical formula to reunify the four forces of physics, as they were originally, before the Big Bang, my intent is to mend reality through art, which, devoid from every conditioning, can lead us everywhere!

"Logic takes you from a to B, imagination takes you everywhere" Albert Einstein

2. About these interesting topics, recently your book came out. It is entitled “UNO Art – Music – Quantum Physics" and it was published in Berlin. How was this text born?

The real book is born following the European Conference on Art & Science "COST-bridging the gap between science and art", organized by the European Cooperation in science and Technology, in which I was invited, as a Speaker, to hold a conference in English on my work, entitled Physical Epiphanies in art, in front of scientists who came from all over the world. It was a really great experience! On that occasion I also presented an abstract of my graduation thesis entitled UNO Art – music – quantum physics in which I revealed the points of contact between these three maximum human expressions, and my research was noticed and appreciated by a well-known German publishing house who asked me to publish that text. At that point, however, I pointed out that the original text was in Italian, but fortunately they told me that there was the chance to publish it, always in Berlin, but with their Italian partner EAI Edizioni Accademiche Italiane. At that point I resumed my thesis, which in the meantime had remained and captured dust on the shelves of the academy, as not even Man Ray had managed to capture with “Dust breeding“. I widened my thesis by adding my new works, but also a chapter dedicated to contemporary art that deals with interdisciplinary research.

If there is one thing that I have never understood, together with self-referentialism, is why many artists shield themselves inside their ivory towers and speak well only and exclusively of their work or, at most, of the work of artists already passed away. The secret, in my opinion, instead, lies in the sharing!!! For this reason I decided to speak about artists of previous generations - like Gino De Dominicis, Mary Bauermeister and Maurizio Mochetti - but also artists closer to my generation - like Saracen Tomàs, Olafur Eliasson, Loris Cecchini, Donato Piccolo, Alberto Di Fabio and Carsten Hoeller - with whom I share a similarity in artistic research and, albeit having different starting points, we have come to look in the same direction.

3. Gino De Dominicis is one of the great artists who worked with the concepts of physics, some have likened to the similarity of intent your work to that of GDD. What is your relationship with GDD and does your work take inspiration from your own or part of other ways?

In my opinion GDD is a genius! So, the fact that they compared my work to his can only honor me deeply. I hope to be on top of it! I have known the work of GDD, unfortunately, only after the academy, where the most advanced history of contemporary art was teaching up to Burri, when I had already embarked for a long time my path of interdisciplinary artistic research. This path was born from the inner reworking of my own context of life, starting from the scientific and philosophical imprintings of my birth family, then from my university studies in Physics and Genetics, before academy. Art & Science, moreover, have always attracted each other as magnets from time immemorial: just think that at the time of Leonardo da Vinci Art and science were considered cognitive strategies of equal value.

When, then, the well-known gallery owner Pio Monti acquired me in his gallery I began to know the work of GDD and to deepen it closely. Pio, in fact, was not only one of his gallery owners, but also a great friend with whom he shared great experiences, many of which narrated in the book "P ' IO & GINO" published by Giancarlo Politi.

I really would have loved to meet him live!!! We would have had so much in common to talk about... But he became immortal too soon!

4. About Immortality! With your DNA-PORTRAITS, you managed to make immortal the characters you retract!!! This is one of your most famous projects, which in 2014 won the BUENOS AIRES competition and last year the "Maurizio Collino" prize for the best artistic research in Paratissima-Torino. Can you tell us something about this incredible project?

Gladly! The DNA-PORTRAIT project portrays well-known characters from the art world and not only. It does not start from the phenotype but from the genotype, for which we mean the genetic constitution of an individual.
Therefore, in a kind of Copernican revolution of the image and the collective imagination, the common conception of portrait is overturned and these "ETERNAL PORTRAITS" are realized.
DNA, in fact, is the hidden code that determines most of our physical and behavioural characteristics but in which the time factor is negligible.
The double helix, dissolved, leaves room for a genetic sequence that is brought in the exact original position on a real silver canvas, and composes a visual rhythm that wants to reproduce a fractal of the symphony of humanity.
Each gene is embroidered by hand with the thread that becomes a metaphor, both of a "Fil Rouge" that unites all the creation, and of “tense violin strings" that resonate with the touch of the eye of the user.
As well as the combination of 7 musical notes can create infinite symphonies, so 5 primary colours can create infinite nuances, thus from the 4 nitrogenous bases that constitute DNA, infinite types of life can generate.

"The DNA knows nothing and does not care about anything. DNA simply is, and we dance to his music" Richard Dawkins

5. This DNA-PORTRAIT project recently led to your invitation to "BoCS d’Art" Artists in residence, thanks also to the critic Alberto Dabiri, creator of Martedì Critici and nominated best critic by Artribune in 2015. Tell us about this experience…

First of all, it was a wonderful surprise to discover that in Italy could be founded an artist's residence with international connotations!
The mayor, Arch. Mario Occhiuto, thanks to his passion for art and to European funds, has managed to design and create a real art city in Cosenza.
The art critic Alberto Dabiri, known for having conceived "Martedì Critici" of Rome, was called to curate it. For me, it was a great honor to be invited to take part in this grandiose project that will take the works donated at the end of each artist's residence to realize the Museum of Contemporary Art in Cosenza.

Spending a month working in a Box d'art, a real studio house, with 27 other colleagues was certainly an experience of enrichment and reflection. An human enrichment, first of all, thanks to the precious coordinators of the residence - Patrizia Pichierri, Fabrizio Marano e Piero Gagliardi on site, Annalisa Ferraro e Marica Messa remote (only physically remote) - and thanks to the other artists with whom I shared this experience. A heterogeneous group in age, typology of artistic expression and character traits, but who certainly knew, each with its own peculiarities, to bring an important quid. Then, we had several reflections on the differences of the modus operandi between Italy and Berlin, both on some organizational aspects that may be perfected, and on the interaction between the artists themselves. An unique experience in its kind that I will always bring in my heart.

6. Which are the places where your works are conceived?

I believe that they are created before in places, in non-places.
I have always supported the fact that the artist is a channel of ideas and insights, that come from elsewhere, even if I could not tell exactly where (unconscious? Universe? God? Higher consciousness? It is not given to me to say.) The artist is, first of all, a person who does not choose to be an artist but becomes a missionary by vocation. It is a very difficult job and has no guarantee, you can do it only if your "Daimon", the one so narrated by the ancient Greeks, dragged you there.

"The fate guides those who follow him, drag those who rebels" Seneca

The high sensitivity, the antenna that captures intuitions, with all the pros and cons that it entails, leads me to visualize the artworks in my mind and in my heart already made! At that point I just have to throw down the pencil sketch on paper, later realize the project and only at the end do the material work. Often the very meaning of the artwork becomes clear to me later, after it is finished, only then can I truly understand its concept and its mathematical and philosophical connections.
A curious anecdote was when, a few months ago, I was realizing the DNAPORTRAIT of the visual artist Luca Vitone! After working all night to prepare the silver on his canvas, the next morning I woke up having in mind the abstract image of the coordinates of his exact place of birth, the hospital or the house, therefore, in which he had come to the world. I immediately wrote him an e-mail to tell him and with immense surprise he replied that he had tattooed on his left arm precisely the coordinates of the hospital in which he was born. Incredible! I was speechless!!! I still keep that e-mail as testimony to the wonderful potential of artistic visualization.

7. Many of your works recur in square or cubic form, is there a particular reason?

Nothing is at random! My predilection for the square and cubic shape derives from the study of the rules of the Golden Section, the "Divine proportion" as the ancient Greeks used to call it, which unites all nature. In fact, in all the nature, both microcosm and macrocosm, a specific mathematical proportion recurs. This can be applied to music, architecture and even painting, just think that Leonardo da Vinci, Piero della Francesca and many other artists knew deeply the Golden Section, and applied it constantly in their works.

The square shape for me has a particular interest because, according to the Golden Section, it is the representation of the musical 4/4, symbol of UNITY principle of all harmony.
Translating the musical 4/4 to an extent means to compose an intrinsic harmony in the very shape of the artwork. It will resonate with the user making a silent harmony, that can not be heard by the human ear but perceived by its whole being.

8. Where can one have a STUDIO VISIT? Where should contemporary art enthusiasts come to see you create?

I've always liked the idea of a widespread study!
Much production, especially design, is made in Berlin.
Also, I am setting up my summer study in the Land of Raphael. I am restoring a country house owned by my family near Urbino, which in the summer months will be open for STUDIO VISIT and to arrange brainstormings with friends, artists, scientists, philosophers, etc...
I would like to recreating a kind of New Renaissance, like in the times of Lorenzo the Magnificent, where contaminations between different know-hows and collaborations between various kinds of figures can bring people, artists to collaborate rather than to compete with each other. Collaboration brings huge benefits to everyone!! Abroad they are already doing it, in Italy it would be nice to understand it!

A gem: this farmhouse is immersed in an area of particular interest, where a special PDO extra virgin olive oil is produced. It is called “The Gold of the Marche”, in ancient times it was supposed to have special properties, almost miraculous!
A “down to a fine art” production of extra virgin olive oil will start soon and will have special labels, but finding out which ones is up to you!
You can find them soon in the Portal: and on the official Facebook page:

9. What new artworks are you working on?

Contemporarily to the DNA-PORTRAIT project I'm making two more projects: SmART & (IN) VISIBLE.
SmART is the production of micro artworks with micro prices for young collectors. These are bonsai artworks, made exactly like the large ones and signed, but in a small size.

(IN)VISIBLE is a series of sculptures that play on the destabilization of our perception, nothing is as it seems!
These sculptures suggest us how much our senses deceive us.

For example, in the sculpture GOD DOES NOT PLAY DICE, we see two dices above a pillar that rises up to our eyes, but if we try to stretch a hand and grab them, we will have a handful of air in our hand.
They are, in fact, holograms of dices!
Here the dice becomes metaphor of the manifold in one and the hologram of the dice, in particular, represents the idea of the dice, or rather a projection of it.This projection wants to suggest that, like the dice, so the reality around us, in a philosophical sense, is a projection of our thoughts.

Finally, in MULTIVERSE the corner stone of a cube of 24x24 cm, which matter is corroded by time, is another cube which instead is made of the purest glass.
As in the Heisenberg uncertainty principle, it is the observer who determines the reality, so in "Multiverse" is the observer who determines the work according to his point of view.
In fact, looking at the work from above, inside the crystalline corner stone, the user will notice another cube, this time only drawn by a pure white line: an idea of cube then, with numbers on its faces, numbers that govern that specific reality. Instead, the user who will observe the same work laterally through the same transparent cube, will see other numbers engraved in the same drawn cube, and the same will happen for the observer of the other side. So from the same unit, changing observer and point of view, the reality itself changes.

10. What is your dream?

Becoming what I am!

Interview with Claud Hesse

26 10 2010

Thank you for granting me this interview.

1. Why have you chosen to use a pseudonym? Is there a semantic link with the German writer and poet Hermann Hesse?

I have always upheld the universal value of art and I didn’t want my pictures to be conditioned by possible prejudices about sex and origin: for this reason I chose a pseudonym that was in a sense ‘neutral’ but that at the same time recalls my real name.
First of all, ‘Hesse’ read with Italian pronunciation is the first letter of my surname, “S”. Hermann Hesse is undoubtedly a philosopher/writer that I really admire.

2. When did you first become interested in art and where did this interest come from?

I’ve always been interested in art. I think it’s something you’re born with.
My father is mad about art and since I was a child, with both my parents, I’ve visited Art Galleries throughout the world and the most important exhibitions of contemporary art which obviously increased and stimulated my natural aptitude.
However, I have always held the view that it’s not the artist who chooses art but art that chooses the artist.
Art is an immense and spectacular force which rises from the guts to take over every single molecule of the body.

3. In your view is conceptual art still contemporary?

Art with a capital ‘A’ has always been and always will be conceptual.
In the course of history there have been numerous movements that have from time to time changed ‘form’ but they have always reaffirmed strong and profound ideas.
Just think of the art of Michelangelo, we certainly can’t say that it’s mere aesthetics, quite the contrary, his work explodes with very powerful universal concepts. The same is true for the more abstract art of Kandinskij which is not just made up of pleasant colour combinations but above all is brimming with important meaning.

4. What is beauty for you?

‘Kalòs kai agatòs’ as the ancient Greeks used to say, in other words Beauty is also Goodness.
Beauty with a capital ‘B’ doesn’t concern so much a question of pure aesthetics but rather something deeper that has to do with a kind of ‘inner harmony’ that spills over onto the outside.
It can materialize in wonderful symphonies, forms and feelings that in some way interact with the audience conditioning them and making them more ‘beautiful’, more ‘good’ and more in ‘harmony’.

5. In your view what sound impression do your works leave on those who see and hear them?

Many of my works are conceived according to harmonic proportions which draw on the beats of musical time signatures; in the perfect squares, for example, we find 4/4 time, the symbol of unity and the principle of all harmony.
The idea is to transmit to the viewer, together with a thought and an idea, also a subconscious vibration of harmony and musicality which has a resonance with the viewer’s own specific vibrations in order to create a sort of reciprocal symphony between the work of art and the person looking at it.

6. Which places, if they exist, have inspired and captivated you?

I would say ‘non-places’ rather than places.
What inspires my paintings is the inner reworking of a continuous and in-depth research made.
From books, lots of books on art, science, philosophy etc. and from the world that pours from the scanning electron microscope.
For about a year I have been collaborating with the National Institute of Nuclear Physics for artistic purposes.

7. Could there exist a link between science and religion?

Science and religion are currently seen as two great branches of learning, one related to reason and the other to the spirit, respectively. But this has not always been the case. In the past all the different sciences were grouped under religion.
Now with quantum physics a step towards “reconciliation” could be taken even though not all scientists would agree here. In other words, quantum physics could help us to better understand religion.
Einstein’s last dream was precisely this…“to demonstrate God through science”.

8. How autobiographical is your work?

I think that every work by every artist is in some way autobiographical in the sense that it reflects his/her soul, right from the simple act of doing it.
In my work there is a search for “universal” concepts that can unite all humanity regardless of sex, skin colour or religion touching on themes that, to a certain extent, concern the essence of things rather than their ‘perceived form’. It’s true however that even if the autobiographical aspect is minimal, I think it can be found in the tonal contrast of colours and in the vein of irony present in many of my works.

9. If you were a work of art, which would it be?

Among the very many works of art that I admire perhaps the ones that I feel closest to are those by Barnett Newman.
His pictures have luminous and compact colours which at the same time are unexpectedly traversed by lines of the purest light that evoke deep gashes like wounds or “doors” to other dimensions, like the inner dimension.

10. What artistic movement do you feel in some way linked with?

We are always trying to pigeonhole everything into a pre-established, already existing, already organized type.
This cannot happen with my art that springs from continual research. This means the works often flow straight from the microscope, from the inside of reality, freeing themselves from everything that until now has been conceived of as the form-image of art, both figurative or informal.

11. Tell me about your daily life as an artist.

Most of my life revolves around art. I spend most of my time in my studio painting and when I’m not painting I’m continually doing research. I read, I go to the theatre and I travel.
When I’m particularly stressed out I seek solitude, at times it is the only way to feel less “alone”.

12. What do you want to do in life?

I want to do what I am.

Thank you for your time.

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