TIMO LENZEN — Interview
Timo Lenzen, graphic designer from Frankfurt.
Hello Timo, how are you?
Thank you, I am totally fine right now. Things are getting pretty exiting in the next weeks for me. I start a scholarship in Shanghai for the next 6 months, so you can imagine how my life is upside down at the moment.
Can you introduce yourself?
Of course! I am Timo Lenzen, 26 years old, graphic artist from Frankfurt where I was born and raised and still living a thrilled life. Currently studying at the HfG Offenbach, but I am at the finished straights to hold that good damn diploma in my hands. Beside of working on my own stuff, doing music and the few university visits, I do some freelance work for different studios, like “Pixelgarten” a small graphic design studio.
Where does your interest in graphic design come from?
Hard to say… I mean I’ve done a lot of drawings in my childhood, especially for other kids at the schoolyard, so I always was the “creative child” at school. Watched a lot of cartoons and science fiction movies, played through an amount of video games. I guess all that influenced me in my creativity at the first place. Through my obsession for video games I early owned a computer, so to transform that creativity with the help of that little wonder machine was logical to me.
Can you describe to us one of your projects?
Sure! I would like to talk about the project “ideal” I did for the exhibition “Perfumed with Dynamite” at the summer-show of the basis studios in 2015. The concept of the curator Gürsoy Doğtaş was to put into each of the five exhibition spaces two artistic propositions which collaborate on one installation.
I shared the exhibition room together with Sofia Duchovny, an artist from Frankfurt. Our work was all about contrast and juxtapositions, empty/sucked out figures against compact, sterile objects. I showed there a 4,40 x 2,54 m sized wallpaper and 3 looped animations. In general it was a great experience to be part of a classical art show as a graphic designer and showed me once again that it is possible to do artistic propositions as a graphic designer.
What are your interests in 3d animation?
Actually I really wanted to do video games when I was a teenager so I started to use RPG Maker, an easy program for the development of role-playing games. So I guess that was the first thing that put me in the direction of using 3D programs in general. The second big thing was short before I started my studies at the HfG Offenbach. I finished an internship at the English Theatre in Frankfurt as a background artist, because I was really interested in creating and building up huge spaces in a creative way. So I combined the interest in making simple little playable worlds and on the other hand my interest in building up scenes and spaces.
The combination of using 3D programs together with common graphical programs is what I am interested in. I really like the idea of creating something and always have the option of using it animated for a short teaser or a full movie, to support a printed medium.
Who are the designers that you admire?
Hard to point out individuals. There are a lot of people I really respect for what they are doing or what they have done in the past. For example when we talk about poster design I have to mention Shigeo Fukuda, clever and charming illustrations and lovely posters he made in his career. Or Isaac Asimov, an American author and professor of biochemistry at Boston University, best known for his works of science fiction and for his popular science books. He is not a designer in a classical way, but his short stories inspired me and my work a lot. And obviously if you look at my portfolio I am inspired by the Bauhaus and the 80´s with all the geometrical forms and shapes.
What stimulates you outside graphic design?
Beside of graphic design I am doing music with my lovely Fender Telecaster Baja. Riding my bike through the whole city and enjoying food, my friends and a cold beer.
Which books are on your bedside table?
For a couple of month I try to finish the new short story book “The men without women” from Murakami Haruki, but after a first great story I stuck at the second one which I didn´t like from the beginning. So maybe I have to skip it and start with the third one to enter the book again.
The last word…
Thank you guys for having me and keep up the good work at LIGATURE.
Interview : Dennis Moya & Tiffany Bähler — 10.15
Images ©Timo Lenezen.