URBANARA

Artist Anna Hellsgård of Resurgo

Popularised by Andy Warhol in the 1960s, the art of silk screening has long been celebrated for its versatility, simplicity and hands-on approach. Today the technique remains a hallmark of DIY culture, and is employed by artists Anna Hellsgård and Christian “Meeloo” Gfeller of Resurgo to create their experimental prints.

Working from their Berlin atelier – a multifarious space that serves the duo as a studio, gallery and retail store – the artists silkscreen their works meticulously by hand, explaining that “each unique print is conceived like an experimental painting, in which accidents and errors play an important part.”

As a selection of Resurgo prints have just been added to the growing URBANARA art range, we stopped by Anna and Christian’s space for a studio tour and to find out the inspiration behind their latest pieces.

Now based in Berlin, you are originally from Sweden, and Christian from France. Does your location inform your art, and if so, how?

Well, certainly. Berlin's reinvents itself from hour to hour. The constant challenge of the future is very exciting for us as visual artists, but Berlin is also a very relaxed city. It sometimes feels like living in a big village. It’s close to nature and in the summer you can swim in the lakes or bike around for hours and discover weird, abandoned places. Both sides are very stimulating for creativity.

The Resurgo works featured in the URBANARA art collection mix bold colours with abstract pattern and shapes. What inspired these prints?

Some post-punk minimal coolness and a good dose of formal innovation. Plus a mix tape including Miles Davis, Sonic Youth & Serge Gainsbourg.

Good art should feel effortless.

When it comes to screen-printing, you are a self-described "perfectionist". The medium you work in and the hands-on nature of screen-printing suggests that no two works will ever be exactly the same, so how do you ensure a quality finish?

It's quite a paradox. We are not interested in crafty, laborious challenges for their own sake, but we love to have our prints meticulously produced from start to finish. It is important to keep a good balance in between spontaneity, rigour and a sharp, handmade feeling. If you try too hard, the magic flies away.

What do you love about screen-printing?

Experimenting! For the last fifteen years we have been experimenting with screen-print techniques, mostly in form of artists’ books & prints. We developed our own visual language by playing with the printing process, mastering colour overlaps, smudges, bleeding, glitches, transparencies. Experimenting keeps the work fresh and exciting.

When it comes to choosing art for your own home, what do you look for?

Pieces that are unique in conception, well-executed and timeless. Good art looks stunningly right and, in retrospect, obvious, or inevitable. Good art should feel effortless. Actually, it’s quite simple - we have to fall in love with the artwork and it has to fit our budget!

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