Andre Maier is a muralist. He paints works of art several metres high on Regensburg’s walls, making the city a little more colourful. All totally legal and by official order. We accompanied him on a tour of his work
Artist Andre Maier
Winding alleys, pastel-coloured facades, cobblestones and sitting in the middle, the cathedral: 2000-year-old Regensburg, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is pure Middle Ages. “One of the most beautiful cities in the world”, says artist Andre Maier about his adopted home. “But I still want to make it a little more beautiful.”
Andre Maier specialises in Mural Art, painting facades. Not illegal, night-time spraying like graffiti artists, but with facade paint, brushes and wall rollers. Totally legal and with commissions in his pocket, sometimes from private customers, sometimes from municipal institutions.
The artist has embellished all four facades of the “Jugendzentrum Kontrast” with colourful fantasy worlds, he has artistically painted the “Bar Palletti” and the entrance area of the “Degginger” cultural and creative centre. His most recent and most outstanding work is the inner courtyard of the “Münchner Hof” hotel. There he painted the portrait of a woman on a house wall – she is five storeys high.
A woman – five storeys high
The woman is wearing medieval armour and is carrying a dog in her arms. “I portrayed Regensburg in her”, says Maier. “The armour symbolises the Middle Ages, and the little dog represents us residents, whom the city cares for. This mural was something really new for Regensburg. But I have only received absolutely positive feedback so far.”
Andre Maier’s style is oriented towards classical, academic art. But elements of Art Nouveau also play a role. Female figures and faces often take centre stage, embedded in decorative elements, and every now and then, the majestic face of a Bavarian lion emerges from somewhere. A certain fantasy magic permeates through his work.
But anyone who walks through Regensburg’s old town and looks up at the facades of the early Gothic houses with their pinnacle roofs, bay windows and glazing bars will not see Maier’s wall art. “As a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the city is naturally under special protection. I can therefore only work in passages or inner courtyards”, explains the father-of-two with a wink.
"We have to ensure that the new Mural Art suits the city"
Special love of home
Andre Maier has only been living in Regensburg for eight years. He is originally from the Belarus city of Witebsk. The Russian-German artist came back to Germany at the age of 25 as a late resettler. “I love Regensburg”, declares the trained art teacher with conviction. He has delved extensively into the city’s past and finds that modern wall art and 2000-year-old history are an excellent match.
“I sometimes go into the Regensburg Museum of History and look at old drawings of the medieval city scape. Even then, many facades were brightly painted”, Maier explains. It is only later that the Baroque facades were added. “Today we have to ensure that the new Mural Art suits the city. It has to be calm, not too turbulent. It should respect the walls and the colours of Regensburg. That leads ultimately to a harmonious whole.”
A lion in leather pants
Maier, the Belarusian artist with the hipster beard, has established a close connection with his adopted home. He says hello with “Servus”, loves traditional costume parades and the Dult and invented “Zoo Bavaria” a few years ago. These are pictures of all kinds of animals – from pugs to lions and crocodiles – smartly dressed in dirndls, Lederhosen and checked shirts.
You can now buy this Bavarian zoo printed on bags, backpacks and many other items online at zoo-bavaria.com. Meeting total strangers wearing a “Xaver the Crocodile” T-shirt always fills the Regensburg resident with great happiness. His personal favourite design? “Loisl the lion, of course!”
... from Andre
Creative center „Das Degginger“
One of my favourite places in Regensburg is the “Degginger” on Wahlstraße. Simply because I have already done so many projects there. Exhibitions, the mural in the entrance area and lots of live paintings. The creative centre also has a nice café – by the way, I designed the menu there. With around 100 illustrations!
regensburg.de (only in German)
Museum of Bavarian History
I also like the recently opened Museum of Bavarian History. It tells the story of Bavaria’s development into a Free State, also using exhibits from everyday culture. I find it very important that such things are preserved.
Home game of the Eisbären Regensburg
If you really want to experience something special, you should stop by the Donau-Arena when the local ice hockey club, the Eisbären Regensburg, have a home game. What an atmosphere!
eishockey-regensburg.de (only in German)