Renate von Löwis of Menar – RvLoM

I probably met Renate first in 1996. I was a tour sound engineer for San Franciso based lofi pop sensation Swell, when she joined us in Germany, as the local booking agent‘s representative. Since then, our ways crossed regularly, when i  passed with touring bands through Bielefeld, and later, Hamburg. I soon got to know how she used her rare time off to recover at her loom, where she produced wonderful wallhangings, each and everyone a unique work of fine art.

Renate von Löwis of Menar
Renate von Löwis of Menar

Renate von Löwis of Menar is an educated handweaver, but her love for the music turned her into a professional promoter and tour manager for almost all of her life. She has likely worked with everybody you might think of in the pop and alternative music world.

In 2016 she decided to settle down and dedicate all of her time to her production of art: the rugs, the paintings and lately also various items of interior design. Perhaps we will even see her designing fashion.

Shortly after her decision to now only work from Hamburg anymore, I took the opportunity to visit her at her studio. I took only very minimal equipment with me, to not get in the way, when I was filming her at work. I tried to put on video an idea of the exceptional 3-dimensionality and the incredible color of her handknotted pieces.

In thruth it is virtually impossible to get an accurate impression of the beauty of her art. You have to see it with your own eyes. I absolutely recommend you to try and see some of her work in the real world.

Needless to say that you can buy her fine art to make your personal space a different place with a unique look. You may even become a lucky owner of a singular work that is epecially made for you and for the room where it is meant to be on display. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch for more information.

Renate has been nominated for the Kate Derum Award 2017 in Melbourne, Australia , has exhibited in Braunschweig, Berlin, Köln and Brussels, and has been featured on in march 2018.

On Instagram: @rvlom

Broetzmann Plus w/Full Blast, Underground Improvisation at Akademie der Künste, Berlin

For the 50th anniversary of the founding of the, at the time, revolutionary  artist owned record label Free Music Production, the Akademie der Künste, Berlin, showed a large exhibition related to FMP, the free jazz movement and the development of a tolerated jazz scene in east Germany. The occasion, called Underground and Improvisation also featured a series of discussion panels, talks and concerts, at its center featuring a two day festival like event, called Brötzmann Plus.

A series of concerts with musicians that were part of  FMP from the start and some younger talents that show the ongoing modernization of the free music and improvised jazz movement. Find here some impressions of Peter Brötzmann presenting his  longtime and current trio Full Blast, featuring Michael Wertmüller and Marino Pliakas, as well as guests Heather Leigh and Keiji Haino.

Wertmueller & Mahmoud

April 27, 2017.

A mixed, all ages audience, many respectfully in suits, at the Liebermann House, that touches Brandenburger Tor at its north side.  A pretty impressive classicist building that used to host painter Max Liebermann‘s studio under the roof. Before its destruction in World War 2. Before Liebermann had to leave Germany for his jewish roots. And before its reconstruction after the fall of the wall.

Now home to Stiftung Brandenburger Tor, a foundation that, with its rather conservatively curated exhibitions, does not necessarily lead you to expect that the lively meeting point of a pre-war art scene of the 1920s would revive here. But the foundation is starting something different today. And so you find yourself at the opening of  a new series of forward looking exhibitions of fine art.

Stiftung Brandenburger Tor has invited Daniel Richter to completely freely curate his own exhibit. Richter decides to dedicate the show, alongside of some of of his own rarely shown work, to the hardly known, almost forgotten, Jack Bilbo. And he invites Michael Wertmüller and Thomas Mahmoud to perform – a first live presentation of their work now called Higgs.

In its expressively intense appearance, complex, yet danceable beats, voice and electronic bass in the foreground, an incredible amount of filigrane details woven into the composition, composed, improvised, powerful but emotionally touching, Higgs is not a band nor a sound project. It is a piece of art. A sculpture expressed in instrumental intensity and human energy, channeled through a minimal installation of acoustic and electronic musical equipment.

Unsurprisingly the project was born with a Wertmüller composition commisioned by Gemany’s well known painter Albert Oehlen and the Museum of Art, Cleveland, who presented the piece as part of an Oehlen installment and individual exhibition for their  100th anniversary in 2016. The audio recording has been printed on 7″ vinyl as part of the exhibition catalogue, that is stll available here.

So far my contribution to Higgs has been the studio recording of Sonar Quartett’s  strings and Thomas Mahmoud’s vocals for the Oehlen exhibition in Cleveland as well as the live mixing for them. More plans for a close cooperation are currently growing.

Higgs has been invited to perform at the Hebbel am Ufer Theatre on Sunday October 8, 2017, in a double bill with Zonal (aka Kevin Martin and Justin Broadrick).