Paloma Varga Weisz
Becoming an artist was really a very natural step, because really, from my little childhood on, we did these little paintings and drawings, and made small exhibitions at home, and sending my works to my parents.1 So, the whole attitude of being an artist was extremely early and very familiar. And during school, I had the idea of becoming an actor — would be a possibility, because I was in the drama class at school, etcetera. And I didn’t really work as — I didn’t really did artworks during my school time. And when I was then after school trying to apply for actor’s school, I totally found out that it’s not the thing I should follow up. It’s kind of boring for me to read all these old texts, and train in Shakespeare, whatever. And someone told me that I should go a different thing and try to become — to enter in an art school.
So, I was then, after school, in the school of my father for one year. And he became my model. So, I was really only focused on him, and his face, and his person, to draw him all the time, or make a portrait of his head, and make this portfolio for academy, and all of them didn’t want me. And a friend of mine told me that there is this little school in Bavaria where you can train to become a woodcarver, and that I should apply for there. And I went there, and immediately became a student there. And it was a tiny school. We were only 15 students. And it was in the middle of the Alps, in a tiny town called Garmisch-Partenkirchen.
And this was a very strict school to learn to become a woodcarver. And I totally fell in love with this material, and these tools. And this very regular daily school life, where you had hours to learn to draw from animals or portraits, or nudes, or train to build up some models in clay — so, it was very basic. It was something that you would think that an academy would learn you these days. But when I came then, afterwards, to Düsseldorf, to the art academy in Düsseldorf, you don’t learn this stuff at all anymore. So, the whole tools and techniques I learned are kind of old-fashioned now for academies.