Abstract paintings cause joy and wonder in the hearts of people who view them. At first glance, it looks like nothing more than a colourful splotch of paint on canvas. However, to those who think deeply about what is depicted in this painting, they see that the splotch represents the magic of life. As Nikolaus Scharner says, “My paintings are a witness to the joy of today but also fear and concern.” The enchanting power of passion is revealed by Nikolaus Scharner in this chat with the Fab crew. He creates a surreal world of calm and harmony that can only be seen by those who possess its inner power.
Painting creates a lot of joy and distracts me from bad feelingsNikolaus Scharner
Fab: You have exhibited your artwork in so many different countries. How do you feel about that?
Nikolaus Scharner: Excited! My first exhibition abroad was in 2020 in Aviano, Italy. I received the Italian Oscar for Art from the Italian Ministry of Art. My second exhibition in another country was in St. Petersburg, Russia, and I sold half of my paintings to Russian collectors.
Fab: What was the reception like from the public?
Nikolaus: Everywhere I was accepted with great empathy and respect, even though I am only 16 years old and was born with a handicap. This positive public feedback gives me the conviction that mankind has developed further and people also estimate inner values.
Fab: How would you describe your work?
Nikolaus: My sincere feelings are part of my work, and I want the spectators to be moved by the positive vibes of my paintings.
Fab: If there’s one thing that never changes in your paintings, it’s how colourful they are. Are there any specific meanings you associate with colours?
Nikolaus: My paintings are a witness to the joy of today but also fear and concern. Choosing a specific colour is the best way to express my thoughts, which I want to share with everybody who wants to see my paintings.
My paintings are a witness to the joy of today but also fear and concern.Nikolaus Scharner
Fab: What do you think of as your artistic style?
Nikolaus: I am a representative of abstract expressionism.
Fab: I’m intensely curious as to how you juggle school and painting.
Nikolaus Scharner: My main profession is still being a student, and I want to finish school with a diploma in two years. In my leisure time, I enjoy painting in my house with my beloved music. Both occupations enrich my life.
Fab: What about music influences your work?
Nikolaus: Very much. I always paint with music, and the range is very wide: from AC DC to Luciano Pavarotti, and sometimes Caribbean music.
Fab: What do you do with your time if you’re not making art?
Nikolaus: I love to spend time with my friends playing football and inviting them to our house, where we can swim and organise a barbecue.
Fab: You are supporting the charity “Helle Hoffnung” in Ukraine. Tell us more about the charity and the reasons behind your decision.
Nikolaus: The Ukrainian people have deserved our full support because they stand for freedom and democracy against dictatorship and tyranny. I and my family deliver humanitarian aid with trucks to Ukraine – mainly food, medicine, and hygiene articles for women and children.
The Ukrainian people have deserved our full support because they stand for freedom and democracy against dictatorship and tyrannyNikolaus Scharner
Fab: You once stated that one of your passions was skydiving. How did you get into that?
Nikolaus Scharner: At the age of eight years, I made my first jump out of an aeroplane. Since then, I regularly visit Windobona indoor skydiving in the Vienna Prater to train. In 2020 and 2022, I became the Austrian National Champion in indoor skydiving and will defend my title again in 2023.
Fab: Returning to your artistic activities, at what precise age did your creative journey begin?
Nikolaus: I started to paint at the age of 9, and during the pandemic lockdowns from 2020–2022, I had a lot of time at home to improve my skills.
Fab: Do you still have any memories of your very first piece of artwork? If so, do you still have it?
Nikolaus: Yes, of course, I remember it very well – it was the painting “Flight” in purple. I sold it in 2020 and now it is on display in Windobona Vienna in Prater.
Fab: Do you find that doing art improves other facets of your life?
Nikolaus: Yes, painting helps me process impressions of my daily life at school, with friends and family. It also trains my thoughts. Painting creates a lot of joy and distracts me from bad feelings. It gives me the opportunity to reach more people and spread my message: “Think positive!”
Fab: You’ve expanded your painting techniques beyond canvas to include painting on textiles. Why? What’s the plan—do you have any plans to enter the fashion industry?
Nikolaus Scharner: People should wear not only mass-produced clothes but also individual models, which only exist once. Everybody is unique, and clothes should also be much more diverse than they are. Our fashion industry needs to be more colourful.
Fab: Who are your greatest artistic influences?
Nikolaus: Actually, I have many big artists in mind when talking about influence. Salvador Dali is one of my favourites. Jackson Pollock is probably the artist who encouraged me to go further and abandon the conventions of classical performance art.
Fab: And finally, where do you see yourself in ten years?
Nikolaus: Of course, I would like to become a famous artist and sell my paintings to famous people who appreciate my style.
Stay up to date on the newest in the world of Fashion, Arts, Beauty and Lifestyle; Follow FAB on Instagram.