Matthias Maier | Stories | Week 22 | Japanese Dogwood

The big day

The opening of my current exhibition «Sichtweisen» | “Points of view” took place on Wednesday and this was definitely the highlight of the week.

Since my return from New York, I have been working towards this exhibition and this day. I have already started the initial preparations in my studio in the Upper Westside. Thoughts about the pictures I want to exhibit, decisions about new works that I might be able to realize before the exhibition. Thinking about the arrangement and hanging of the pictures on the existing walls. Then meetings with the art commission team at the Rosengarten senior center in Laufen. Consideration of the theme of the exhibition and a title. The design of the invitation, which suddenly gave the whole thing a face. Working out the works that I actually wanted to do for the exhibition. A digital bird print, two Geometrix works and an Alpine landscape were created. In the end, there were 42 works that I wanted to show. As my works are all on paper, they have to be framed for exhibitions. So I had to order frames, mounts and then frame everything. I did this in several batches over four weeks as I couldn’t transport all the material at once. But when everything was framed and packed in the studio, I was very reassured. At the same time, invitations for the vernissage were written and sent out. And then there were texts to write for advertising and speeches, for the website and social media.

Matthias Maier | Stories | Week 22 | Geometrix

Detail of a Geometrix piece realized for this exhibition

Getting nervous

In the last few weeks, I began to feel a subtle anxiety that somehow always accompanied everything and reached its peak in the days leading up to the opening. Will people like the exhibition? Will people come to the vernissage at all? And the idea of me, as a rather introverted person, having to give a speech in front of everyone didn’t necessarily alleviate this anxiety. What always helps is to prepare everything as well as possible. And to look at it from the perspective of the last day on earth. Even a failure would be something that would make you content. Because you have done something at all, dared to do something, taken a risk. One of many escapes from the comfort zone that make you feel that you are human and alive.

Matthias Maier | Stories | Week 22 | Still Life IV
Matthias Maier | Stories | Week 22 | Still Life VII
Matthias Maier | Stories | Week 22 | Still Life IX

Some of the Still Lifes on display

Feeling good

And then the big day arrived. And as is so often the case, when you are well prepared and the day arrives, all doubts and fears are gone. The Japanese dogwoods were in full bloom in the garden of the senior center. I worked with these flowers in some of the pictures on display and when I saw them, I knew that everything would turn out well. People came, many I hadn’t seen for a long time, many from further away and I felt so pleased to see them. My work, my passion, a large part of my world on the walls. Dear people who are interested, who listen to my thoughts, who buy my work. I talked for 4 hours straight – I felt like I talked more than the rest of the days of the year put together. Great conversations and feedback from which new inspiration arises. The aperitif accompanying the vernissage was organized by the Rosengarten senior center and was so lovingly realized that the guests were also very satisfied in this area and we all spent a wonderful evening together. So a crowning finale to four months of work, I couldn’t be happier.

Matthias Maier | Stories | Week 22 | Opening
Matthias Maier | Stories | Week 22 | Opening
Matthias Maier | Stories | Week 22 | Opening

Culinary and art moments during the opening

Before and after

The rest of the week was also dominated by the opening. At the beginning of the week, it was simply important for me to be rested and in the best physical condition. I did my sport and got enough sleep. And I enjoyed the little things that caught my eye as I walked past. There are still lots of flowers. Lilies reflected in the water in a pond around the corner, like these that grew in the stream in front of our house where we used to play and bathe as children.

Matthias Maier | Stories | Week 22 | Pollen Foam
Matthias Maier | Stories | Week 22 | Driftwood

Pollen foam and driftwood covering the river’s surface

Sunny gray

The second half of the week was of course more relaxed, but was also characterized by sport and the usual obligations and activities that are part of my life alongside art. All the rain led to high water in the Rhine and grey and brown were the color of the days. But with as much sunshine in my heart as I had this week, these days were equally radiant. 

Matthias Maier | Stories | Week 22 | Pigeon in the rain

Even the pigeon in front of my kitchen window seems to be annoyed by the rain

Main Image Japanese dogwood blossoms in the garden of Seniorenzentrum Rosengarten on the opening day.