Author Archives: Brodie Weir

Artist Spotlight: Arabella Hilfiker

In this series, we present artists currently working in our studio. Today, we introduce you to Arabella Hilfiker. 

Working with paint, text and print Arabella documents the relevance of everyday life within the bigger picture of the human experience. Her work is a collection of images, thoughts and opinions, which manifest themselves into a story of their own direction. 

Her focus hasn’t changed since coming to Pilotenkueche, but she is hoping to expand the stories past the paintings through experimentation with sculpture and installation; mentioning puppetry as a particular area of interest. The exploration of this medium reflects the playful nature of her work and continues to encompass the honest and naive humour of the style with which she paints. “Art can be too serious”, she says when discussing the processes behind her work, adding that through personal experience she sees her work as, “something more intuitive” – starting with a sketch and thereafter seeing possible relations to wider themes. 

All photos by Pilotenkueche

Arabella’s current body of work opens the conversation of how we situate happiness within our lives. With the connectivity of the internet becoming increasingly apparent, she cites the recurring motif of the mobile phone as a background presence both in her work and everyday life; something, that without even realising, becomes unavoidable and, “forces us to not be in the present”. 

With our preview exhibition just a few weeks away, we are excited to see Arabella’s upcoming work!


Arabella Hilfiker 

Artist Spotlight: Jing Tan

In this series, we present artists currently working in our studio. Today, we introduce you to Jing Tan. 

Originally from Shenzhen China, Jing Tan graduated with a Masters degree from Royal College of Art, London, this year. In her previous millinery studies, Jing created elaborate and eccentric hat designs heavily influenced by the idea of magic realism.

For her time at Pilotenkueche however, she is experimenting more with sculpture and installation work, channeling her medium into an abstract response to a specific story from Chinese folklore – The Snail Maiden. Her work plays with the tangibility and displacement of texture as a representation of this female snail form and the domestic role she has been given in the story. Collaborating with both artists and her new Leipzig audience, she hopes to collate responses to the folklore story; specifically the moment when the shell is taken away from the woman, revealing the soft body underneath. 

All photos by Pilotenkueche 

Looking at her studio space is an exciting insight into the way she works and the references she plays with, her own shrine to Snail Maiden culture. Jing is currently working on creating her own slime pigment that she hopes will deform and change throughout the time her work is exhibited.

Jing sees her project during Pilotenkueche as a “research based installation”, asking people to recount memories which they can equate to the shell of the snail being lifted. She explains that her idea initially developed from negative trauma, but she is now looking at individual memory, adding that “sometimes we ignore and to revisit is self healing”.

Jing is hoping to engage with the local people of Leipzig, including into her art subjective responses to this Chinese folklore. If you wish to contact her regarding her work, this can be done via her email or instagram linked below.

Jing Tan

Artist Spotlight: Curtis Welteroth

In this series, we present artists currently working in our studio. Today, we introduce you to Curtis Welteroth. 

Predominantly working with paint and installation work, Curtis Welteroth presents a comparative between pop culture and his experience as a young, queer, American. Whether it’s his early sculptures of hyperrealism or his more recent, erotic, painterly work; he wishes to trick the eye. Deciphering a personal language between the signifier and the signified, he presents to his audience a Curtis-specific relationship between communication and context. 

All photos by Pilotenkueche

Here in Leipzig, he wishes to “incorporate more painterly aspects of the Northern Renaissance”, into his still life painting and continue to examine the boundaries of semiotics within his work.  Wanting to explore performance as a new form of expression, he is keen to seek a collaborative process with other artists in Pilotenkueche. Through the autobiographical nature of his current work, he wants to open the discussion of a performance “that can continue indefinitely”, allowing himself to experiment with this new medium without any restriction.

Within the Pilotenkueche exhibition schedule, Curtis will be showing at Space Chorus and Corporal Temperature. We look forward to seeing what he comes up with next!

Curtis Welteroth