Six questions for
Justin Urbach

Tique asks six questions to an artist about their work and inspiration.
This week: Justin Urbach.

Artist Justin Urbach
Lives in Munich, Germany

How do you describe your own art practice?

I always try to approach my projects in a very multidimensional way and to deal intensively with a specific topic. The medium and thus the material and technological framework conditions are systematically revealed and scrutinized in the works. In most cases, the theme also determines the medium – so I use different genres and build a mesh from them to create a hybrid installation. Collaborating with musicians is also very important to me. The work with the band Carl Gari & Abdullah Miniawy in particular shows my interest in the medium of music video. The connection to media art is present, and I attempt to explore new paths in the genres. Basically, I’m just trying to explore the camera as a tool, and I’m always surprised by its power to freeze the people.

Which question or theme is central in your work?

In my artistic practice I try to explore and reflect in time-based media the intertwining of humankind and virtual reality, focusing on questions of media, materiality, transformation processes and hybridity. Coming from the camerawork I always try to use aesthetic meanings and the power of a cinematic visual language, thematized as tools for exploring the hybrid nature of human existence.

Besides this I also try to collaborate with specialists from a wide range of fields like science and medical partners to use other technical systems such as MRIs, 3D scans and motion capturing to analyze the surface of different worlds and frigid aesthetics with the emotionality and vulnerability of characters and landscapes.

What was your first experience with art?

It’s not easy to say, but I think it was my very first camera. Really crappy quality, but at the time it was the key. The first opportunity to create something on my own. 
And of course the time I spent in my grandfather’s studio, who was a painter.

What is your greatest source of inspiration?

I think it’s the balance between travelling, being in between spaces and the quieter and more intensive research days in the studio.

What do you need in order to create your work?

Primarily, I need people who are also interested in the power of producing. People who are part of the crew when we are filming or, in particular, people who know how to use certain technical equipment.

I think that in installations and multidimensional projects, bringing people together and building a community is the most important aspect.
The dialogue and collaboration with people from different industries enriches the depth of my creative work and reveals a broad spectrum of perspectives and expertise.

What work or artist has most recently surprised you?

The works of Polina Kanis and Jacolby Satterwhite and the exhibition of Julian Charrière at Langen Foundation this year.

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