Instagram: @nanna_prieler Website: www.nannaprieler.com
1. What's your story? Where are you from?Originally I'm from a small village in the mountains of Austria. But I went away to attend an art school in a bigger city at the age of 14. The time there was a very defining experience for me cause we could and did basically whatever we wanted to. It was obviously great although very confusing sometimes…however, in the end, it helped to be independent at a young age. After graduating I had a graphic design education and wanted to move to Vienna, which is the city where I still live now. I needed money and started working as a graphic designer for that reason, but it didn’t take me long to recognized that this wasn't right for me. So I quit my day job and tried to survive as an illustrator, which wasn't easy at the beginning.
2. Tell us about your aesthetic.When you look at my illustrations, the first thing that might catch the eye is the strong interest of playing with color. But what I see as almost more important is the conflict between round and square elements and shapes. I have the demand to create a sort of tension, comparable to an interesting relationship or a love affair.
3. What is your favourite medium and why?Printing with acrylic paint on paper. I used to work digital a couple of years ago but discovered that working by hand is pure pleasure. During the process you'll find me in a kind of meditative state - it's almost erotic.
4. What is your artistic process like?I'm drawing quite a lot, collecting situations and moments in crowded places or by candlelight. When a sketch feels right, I'll make a few copies and cut out the different templates. The color is at first transferred onto sponges and then from the sponge onto the paper. Of course, I never know in the beginning which part of the drawing will be shown in what color… so it's always a surprise in the end… it's a very impulsive process and that's the most fun part of it.
5. Who and/or what inspires your work?There are two different sources of inspiration for me. The one I got inspired by at a younger age, which is so to say the base of my aesthetic taste, and actual inspiration from nowadays. Here's a little extract from then and now: Frida Kahlo, Alessandro Mendini, André Lanskoy, Saul Bass, Miroslav Šašek, Pablo Picasso, Maria Likarz, Henri Matisse, Lyubov Popova, Hilma af Klint, Jacques-Henri Lartigue, Eric Carle, Blexbolex, Keith Haring, Vogue Jazz Age Covers by Georges LePape, Suspiria by Dario Argento, Josef Hoffmann, Bernard Rudofsky, Olga De La Iglesias, Carlota Guerrero, Bum Bum ice cream, United Colours of Benoten in the 90s and Daffodils.
6. What role does art play in your life? How does it change the way you view the world?It makes me think from time to time and sometimes visually overwhelms me as well, which makes it one of the most unpredictable powers. It can be everything, or nothing. Exactly this narrow grade makes it so appealing.
7. Where did you study?I kind of never had the chance to. Back in the days, I felt this very strong desire to be independent and therefore I needed money. So I started, the graphic design job and illustrated after regular working hours late at night.
8. Where do you see yourself in five years?I want my work to grow and in the best case surprise myself with where it goes. Hopefully, there are going to be some challenging projects and clients on this way and I'll get the chance to spread some important ideas to a bigger audience. I would like to contribute to contemporary social issues and support the right ideas such as equality. Not necessarily in an agency, I like how flexible things are right now….that I can work 25 hours on some days and take my leisure time whenever I feel like it.
9. What about in ten?One constant in my life is that I love things to change. There are so many beautiful ways of living and so many interesting things to do and to see, so I really hope that the future me will have experienced a lot.
10. What do you hope to achieve with your art?I'd like to cause emotions, set the ball rolling and give the impetus for new ways of thinking.
11. Now, tell us a little more about you as a person: what is your favourite food?Pizza Margherita.
12. Favourite book?Raymond Queneau, Exercises in Style.
13. Favourite genre of music?Jazz, Funk, Bebop sometimes Bossa Nova or Folk Rock
14. What are your hobbies?Reading magazines and books while listening to music and drinking glasses of coffee and wine. Drinking prosecco after I watered and petted my plants. Lazing around and looking at all the books, plants and empty glasses.
15. If you weren't an artist, what would you be?A gardener with philosophical education.