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  Ralf Maximilian Berninger    »    Gallery     Contact
About his art: WELCOME

You are interested in the Paintings of R.MAX and so you may want to know a little more about this outstanding artist. Well, just take a few minutes of your precious time and find out more about ….


In the course of numerous painting experiments, R.MAX developed “Maxist Painting”. That has been divided into the abstract styles of VISION PAINTINGS, IMPULSE PAINTINGS, STRUCTURE PAINTINGS and the MIXED PAINTINGS. A virtuoso, unconventional method of applying the paint is used for all styles of his paintings.

The invention and creation of a picture, is achieved by R.MAX in a process of connecting the conscious and the unconscious. His works and their content develop while he works on them, he visualises and carries out his ideas during the painting process and in the creation of his works he also deliberately leaves the space for coincidence.

R.MAX explains:

“In the process of creation, my art is first of all deliberately unintentional. What I can conceptually express are only the steps that lie directly behind me, I don’t know the next steps, they result from themselves. My personal perceptions play an especially important role during the work on the painting, as well as the process of converting those impressions via intuitive acting and reacting.

It is a kind of research process, that is open internally as well as externally, and I as painter am thereby the tamer of form and colour”.

R.MAX’s art is based increasingly on form and picture discoveries without a pre-determined formula, and more and more on spontaneous inspiration. Instead of a formulated vision, R.MAX begins frequently with the pure act of painting, perhaps with an undefined idea, though without a firmly outlined concept, and surrenders himself completely to the adventure of painting. That greater freedom incurs a higher risk, but the possibility of the failure of the painting process is consciously calculated into the artistic work. That the pictures, despite the evidence of latent aggression, elemental force and primeval fear, nevertheless don’t evoke a depressing, existence - denying conception of the world, demonstrates that R. MAX can create them in a superior way. He rather moves the ambivalence of elementary driving force into the consciousness.

Until now it was possible for mankind to set its elemental force against threat and the ability to withstand it, subjection and the ability to live on, danger and resistance, and R.MAX chose all these elemental experiences as central themes for his pictures. And therefore in his art you can find the unbroken hope that lets you feel the long breath of mankind’s existential fight. His pictures, full of spectacular power and atmospheric denseness, are focussed straight at the viewer to attack him from every direction, to wrap him, to catch him. No doubt: these paintings are aimed or directed at immediate effect.

They are unusually and provokingly radical. The secret of the apparent, a certain aestheticism of the subjectivity is indisputable and, in a strange way, associates the fascination and the irritation.

A process of constant variation characterises all his work from the past three years. Thus there is none of the exhaustion of modern art to be found in his art. Both of his style trends are expressive without restraint and on all sides they convince about the synthesis of effect and nuance.

It’s quite amazing how firmly and radically he bends an often already conjured recognition of the loss of utopia in art, and the look into the lack of prospects and ability to work. He ascends to visual phrasings which are not comparable to anything else in their blending of ecstatic, sensuous impulses, with gestures in painting of an impressive independence.

One thing is obvious: he always tries to break open the fossilized structures and to create space for new experiences and ways of visual perception. Especially with his style trends, impulse pictures and structure pictures,
R. MAX covered a new vital area in art that is often believed dead, and even more often declared dead. That was thanks to an elementary unleashing of colours and forms in conjunction with a controlled picture management. His art is becoming the way to express his inner self.

The artist is at the same time both: outsider and genius, or rather victim and usurper. The art is its own aim and it strictly denies any association with any outer-aesthetic spheres. The analytic preoccupation with his works has nothing to do with a cold-blooded manner, but rather reveals the unusual creative power and energy of this remarkable artist.

”All I am, I am thanks to the art” comments R.MAX about his attitude.

In the end, it is not his intention to revolutionise the arts, but to develop them further as an indication of an absolute autonomy. That gives him the authorization for his own existence. This attitude manifests itself magnificently in his works and their aesthetic stubbornness; his pictures impress and inspire our imagination. The paintings of R.MAX also burst the ordinary frame of the contemporary art.


Possible answers concern general basic conditions of the art and the estimation of its assessment at the start of the 21st century. Of course, R.MAX knows that, because of an increasing blurring of the dividing lines of the genres and of an increasing adoption of electronic media, art doesn’t have the same status like decades ago, when it was more or less entitled to the leading role in the spectrum of the fine arts. That’s why his professed goal is, within limits, the restitution of its former glory.

All of the following were a steady impetus in R.MAX’s work: the emergence into the new, the abrupt radical stylistic changes, the discovery of a positive wisdom in the process of acquisition and rejection, learning and forgetting, putting up a form and destroying it, seeing the established conventions as absolute and looking for unspent means of expression. It is nothing negative, just the opposite. His art refers to an unlimited potential of a constantly regenerating creativity, in which two components act in combination – directness and reflection or weakness and perfection. In reflecting on his artistic way you notice that R.MAX always aims the unmistakable manifestation of his own subjectivity in each picture. His work is full of heights and radical changes, that fascinate again and again but also provoke questions, cause enthusiasm or amazement and astonishment, sometimes also disapproval, but never leave you indifferent.

Even though they spring from a firm egocentric attitude, his works reflect a content from the collective consciousness, which alludes to look into our world and the situation of the fine arts with their faults and conflicts. In his earlier paintings he was looking for adequate artistic expression of self-experienced reality, but on paintings of his both styles: impulse and structure paintings he is working more radically than ever from the aspect of originality, by painting things that nobody painted before.

Apparently there are no limits for the artistic play capabilities of R.MAX. Evocation and erasing, revealing and hiding – they are becoming closely united. He comprehends art as a vast continent, into which you have to penetrate, as a huge reservoir of opportunities from which you can scoop, and thereby he creates a new distinctive conception and mode of expression.

He is certainly not any diagnostician of our damaged world, instead he leaves no space in his remarkable paintings for pessimism and apocalyptic mood. It is obvious, that his pictures emerge from a deep need of painting. The finished work should stay mysterious and not drown in a quagmire of superficialities.
On balance we have to say, that the paintings of R.MAX are extraordinary, aesthetic phenomena. They don’t simply cast their spell over the viewer, but rather take him hostage.

Peter Meyn, Journalist, Hamburg - Germany.

Website:   http://www.rmaxart.de/
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