Claude Förster

Illustration & Painting

I am drawn to the tensions of life and death, where the line between beauty and decay is thin and often teetering on the edge. The imagery in my work takes up symbols of these elements. Flowers, represent not only grandeur, but the precarious nature of life, always on the verge of death's hand. I am simultaneously drawn to, and repelled, by Catholic iconography. I favor them for their powerful, visual contrasts of life and death. Being influenced by tattooing, I play with the idea of placing these symbols and elements on the human body.

Home plays an important role in my work: memories of childhood, places I have lived and learning to feel at home (in my body) are represented by symbols that hold meaning and memory. I am drawn to mythical creatures, not so much for their symbolism, but for the very fact that they can make an onlooker smile.

Claude Förster is a 36 year-old queer person from Hamburg, Germany who studies fine arts at City College of San Francisco. She has been involved in feminist, activist, and queer communities since the mid-90s. For more than 10 years she has been an active member of the bildwechsel archives in Hamburg, where she has programmed screenings for film festivals such as MIX NYC and the Hamburg International Queer Film Festival. She co-organized the first Sex Work Film Fest in Hamburg, and has organized numerous concerts at alternative, community-based venues in Hamburg.

In addition to her fine arts work, Claude is a self-taught freelance graphic designer, illustrator, and was the editor of qunst.mag an art zine published by bildwechsel.

Having recently relocated to San Francisco, Claude is delighted to take formal fine arts classes for the first time in her life at City College. She is an aspiring tattoo artist.

 
 
 
 

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