Peter Riss' paintings, wooden works and installations are distinguished by an almost excessive aestheticism: glassy lacquer surfaces reflecting the environment (including the viewers) as well as golden skeletons and fawns are all part of Peter Riss’ imagery. At first glance this kind of aesthetic might seem rather self-indulgent and vain, but, it is precisely in the moment of embracing vanity that beauty reveals its inherent self-destruction. In an almost Dorian-Gray-like-manner Peter Riss unmasks the Apollonian beauty by carving images of despair and loneliness into those glossy lacquer surfaces. This dualistic concept of Apollonian beauty and purity and the Dionysian destructive forces can be found throughout Riss’ works: chaotic organic forms collide with stern cubist lines, algid abstraction collides with exuberant figuration. By moving between those two poles, Riss constitutes his very own artistic creation.
Peter Riss has studied at the Art Academy in Düsseldorf with Prof. Gerhard Merz and lives and works in Munich.