Reinder Oldenburger

Interview by Jimon

1. You were born and raised in The Netherlands and now you live in New York, why New York? I met my wife who is a New Yorker on set of a music video I was shooting for my band. After going back and forth for a while we decided we would settle here in New York. The Netherlands was the birthing ground for my art career, but New York has been the adoptive father that has encouraged me to keep pushing.

2. What school did you attend and do you think it was necessary?  Yes, my study at the Music Conservatory of Amsterdam made me realize early on that I wanted to be self-taught as an artist. Also, I met some of the most important people there without whom I wouldn’t be where I am now.

3. How would you describe Reinder Oldenburger?  Neptune-born Capricorn

4. What are the defining influences that made you, you?  Parents, teachers, friends, lovers, music and a lot of traveling.

5. What would you be doing if not an artist?  I didn’t start painting until 27 so I remember life without painting well, however it has become the last thing I want to give up. I have always felt a need to be creative one way or another and painting feels 100% right. Maybe in addition to making art I will build guitars one day, which has been a dream of mine for a while now.

6. What kind of art hangs on the walls of your home?  It’s mostly a mix of my own work and work of other artist-friends. I have some very beautiful guitars hanging on my walls and my wife’s taxidermy bat certainly counts as a piece of art as well.

7. What is the one thing you don’t know that you want to know?  What is my cat thinking?

8. What impact would you like to see from your work?  I’d like the audience to have a personal connection to my work. In a similar way that one gets attached to a song: it defines time, space and/or emotion.

9. Does politics effect your work?  Yes, I think it’s important for artists to be active at the center of our civilization and to make art of the present. Some of my recent politically influenced works are titled “Dark Cloud”, “Sombre” and “The Opposition”.

10. Tell us something about the art world that you want to see changed?  I want to see governments of our nations recognize the importance and relevance of the arts and invest in our artist communities, institutions, and education instead of what seems to be the norm nowadays: cutting their budgets.

11. What advice would you give putative collectors?  Trust your intuition.

12. Do you have a place/person/thing that you visit for inspiration?  On days where I feel uninspired all I can do is disconnect, take distance from the work and shift focus. Strolling through Manhattan’s SoHo or the Lower East Side. Discovering historical sites related to art is one of my favorite things to do.

13. If you could have dinner with three artists dead/alive who would be at your table?  I’d have dinner with Gauguin and Van Gogh in the yellow house. I’d bring Warhol to snap some Polaroids.

 14. Name three things you can’t live without in your studio?  My camera, iMac / Music library and Coffee.

The Following pieces of his work are available for purchase.





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