The art of living art

The art of living art

Theophil steinbrenner is an artist, and as an artist he cannot and will not part with certain works. And of course, works of art should not be allowed to rot in a dark corner. They need the right "framework. Exactly this offered the wall of the old fortified tower in sommerach. For 25 years, not only the works of steinbrenner have found a venerable place here. It has also become a place for cultural encounters.

Mr. Steinbrenner, as a sculptor, painter, draftsman and ceramist, you have many opportunities to express yourself. Is there a form you prefer for certain issues, or how do you help decide the means by which an idea should be implemented??
Steinbrenner: I naturally have my favorite materials and shapes. These are, on the one hand, the bronze sculpture in connection with the stone found on site and, on the other hand, representational sculptures, regardless of whether they are people or animals.

You have created many sculptures in your artistic career. Do you have a favorite or a very special story about a particular piece??
Well, I still like all my sculptures and I have also become fond of them all. And if I were to single out one, the other clients would be disappointed. However, I want to make an exception: for my youngest work, the "tannegas-sculptures" in front of the town hall in albertshofen, i particularly liked the fact that this was the private initiative of a single person. She managed to mobilize sponsors so that the artwork could be financed. That was not only class, but exemplary!

What are your favorite motifs and themes that you work with in your art?? Is there something special that inspires you?
I find my favorite subjects and the most beautiful motifs here in my homeland. And that in the nearer surroundings in franken. You only have to go to the steigerwald or the habberge and look around a bit more closely. Above all I like to chat with the locals. So you get inspiration and ideas without end.

What made you decide to open a museum in the old fortified tower of sommerach??
Well, after leaving my teaching job i had set up my studio with gallery and sculpture park. What was still missing was a suitable frame for artworks that should remain in my possession, and a museum was the obvious place to start. What can be more beautiful than to place them in a historical wall such as an old fortified tower??

What kind of response do you get from visitors and people interested in culture??
They only had to look once in my guestbook. The response has been overwhelming and positive throughout! We are also quite satisfied with the number of visitors.

You have also included some celebrities in your circle of friends and culture. How did the contact come about?
Well, this is actually quite automatic for us via the "schwarzacher weihnacht". Every actor is offered membership in my circle of friends and culture on the last day, when they say goodbye, and none of the previous artists has ever turned it down. Some of them became real friendships, for example with jutta speidel, miroslav nemec or sigi rauch.

The program for the anniversary year, but also earlier events, are very diverse. Where do they get the ideas? Are there artists you admire yourself?
The design of my annual program has become a self-runner. For the most part I am contacted by the artists themselves by e-mail. On the other hand, I also get recommendations from my artist friends or they help me to make new contacts. When choosing and compiling my year-round program, I make sure that it is well-balanced and, above all, varied, with a certain continuity.

If they could, they would want to continue another 25 years of culture in the tower?
If it is my pleasure, I will gladly continue my cultural activities for another 25 years. You wouldn’t believe how many very nice contacts you can make through this and how much fun it is to be able to choose the art you like yourself.
The interview was conducted by jennifer billie