Table of contents:
- Colorful instead of NATO olive
- Breaking new ground
- Art as a trademark
- The highest purity of colors
- Watercolor meets paint
- Sculpture garden
Video: Paint Colors. Facade Painting On Industrial Hall
In Spaichingen near Rottweil, the artist Tobias Kammerer provided a gigantic facade painting in an industrial hall. In some 2200 square meters, a watercolor design with lacquer colors has been implemented in sections over the past 20 years.
Author | Photos: Susanne Sachsenmaier-Wahl
Tobias Kammerer can hardly believe that he created a painting in such a huge format. "I measured the areas and come up with 2199 square meters! I think this is the largest painting I know,”he says proudly and, when asked to me, adds:“Do you know anything bigger?”No, I have to fit too. Although I am aware of large-format color designs on facades, I have not yet come across a real painting of this size.
I stand on the Heppler CNC-Technik premises, let my eyes wander over the facade painting and reminisce. It was exactly here that I sat on the scaffolding with Tobias Kammerer 21 years ago and brought the first part of the “Mammut painting” to the facade. That's why I know exactly what it takes to transfer the small-format watercolor design with paint colors and ink rollers to a trapezoidal sheet facade. I have the greatest respect for the exceptional artist Tobias Kammerer - and I am also a little proud that I have contributed a part to this gigantic project.
Colorful instead of NATO olive
The gigantic mural was initially created by chance. Company owner Dieter Heppler remembers how he came into contact with Tobias Kammerer in 1998. "We didn't know each other," he says. At that time, Heppler had acquired an empty Bundeswehr depot in Spaichingen near Rottweil because the original company headquarters in Tuningen had become too small for his flourishing company. And this optically did not correspond to the ideas of the Hepplers. Dieter Heppler's wife Astrid still remembers exactly what she thought at the time: "No customer comes to a natural-colored hall!" So color had to be found. "We definitely didn't want a white or gray hall, it should be colorful. It was more or less a coincidence that we came up with Mr. Kammerer,”adds the entrepreneur. This coincidence was a building in Rottweil, the facade of which at that time the artist had decorated with his painting - which is now known far beyond the German borders. And this had done the Hepplers. In summer 1998 a design by Tobias Kammerer was implemented on the former olive-green coil coating facade in Spaichingen.
Breaking new ground
With this, Tobias Kammerer broke new ground for him. Because his paintings can usually be found in religious buildings. “For me as a 'church painter' it was an unusual job. I tried to implement the shapes of gearwheels, of splashing water in the manufacturing process in my design,”explains the artist. And he succeeded very well. Even if the painting just looks cheerfully colorful when you take a quick look, you can see the splashing water and the gears very clearly on closer inspection.
But not only Kammerer, Heppler too had taken a risk with the artistic facade painting at the industrial hall. “In the beginning we had received a lot of criticism in Spaichingen. People said about me, now he's crazy!”Says Dieter Heppler looking back. He did not allow himself to be dissuaded from his project - on the contrary, he always went one step further.
Art as a trademark
Today, Tobias Kammerer's paintings not only adorn the once olive-green hall. In the same year an office extension was created, the plaster facade of which carries the watercolor paintings by Tobias Kammerer - in this case implemented with silicate glazes. In 2017, Heppler expanded his company ensemble to include a cafeteria, which was partially built over again in 2019 to create new work spaces for the employees. "The environment for the employees has to fit," Dieter Heppler recognized. "That is why we decided to enlarge it again." Tobias Kammerer was on board with every structural change. He always laid hands on the bare wall surfaces and enlivened them with his paintings. That was always a matter of course for Dieter and Astrid Heppler. "It’s just our trademark, it’s part of it,"clarifies Dieter Heppler. The Hepplers were not really enthusiastic about art, only through contact with Tobias Kammerer did they enjoy art. “We just really like his style. And we think it's good that he always stayed true to his line,”praised the couple. Kammerer's handwriting is no longer just on the facade. The foyer, the conference rooms and other areas of the company building and wall surfaces on the private home of the Hepplers were also painted. Even the company sign that greets the company visitors at the gate and the company's website become eye-catchers thanks to Kammerer's distinctive painting. And we think it's good that he always stayed true to his line,”praised the couple. Kammerer's handwriting is no longer just on the facade. The foyer, the conference rooms and other areas of the company building and wall surfaces on the private home of the Hepplers were also painted. Even the company sign that greets the company visitors at the gate and the company's website become eye-catchers thanks to Kammerer's distinctive painting. And we think it's good that he always stayed true to his line,”praised the couple. Kammerer's handwriting is no longer just on the facade. The foyer, the conference rooms and other areas of the company building and wall surfaces on the private home of the Hepplers were also painted. Even the company sign that greets the company visitors at the gate and the company's website become eye-catchers thanks to Kammerer's distinctive painting.that welcomes company visitors at the gate and the company's website become eye-catchers thanks to Kammerer's distinctive painting.that welcomes company visitors at the gate and the company's website become eye-catchers thanks to Kammerer's distinctive painting.
The highest purity of colors
Nevertheless, Tobias Kammerer remains committed to sacred art. Countless churches, blessing halls, ecclesiastical meeting places and, for some years now, grave markings at home and abroad have his signature. Calling Kammerer an exceptional artist or all-round talent is no exaggeration. Whether stained glass in the form of large-format glass sculptures or painted church windows, sculpture or the artistic implementation of sacred furniture - Tobias Kammerer combines a variety of art forms and creates a harmonious whole. Kammerer is particularly known for his watercolor-like murals, which are characterized by their lightness and special color. "I always work with primary colors, with the purest colors," he says. Hence the luminosity, the brilliance of his works. The pastel character, which dissolves the surfaces and gives the painting its lightness, arises exclusively through dilution with water or binding agents.
Watercolor meets paint
At the company building of Heppler CNC-Technik, the task was to break these detached colored areas down onto opaque paintwork. Not an easy task for which Kammerer developed a special technique. The color gradients were modeled by different brightness levels of a color tone. To ensure that the painterly character is not completely lost due to the sharp edges of the lacquered surfaces, Kammerer and his team tore the adhesive tape for all edges by hand in order to recreate runners, brush marks and splashes of paint. The areas were also colored in the current construction phase - as was the case when I was able to support Tobias Kammerer - in the classic way using small paint rollers. Attempts have been made to coat the facade surfaces by spraying,however, the resulting spray mist makes masking work too complex with the multitude of different colored areas that adjoin each other.
Before the colored areas can be painted, however, the small-format design must first be transferred to the wall, which is several meters long and high. Kammerer sticks the rough outlines with strips of tape before drawing them - a little more precisely - onto the primed facade surface with a felt pen. Finally, the details only emerge when masking with the torn tapes. The exact documentation of the colors used helps to ensure that the colors of the individual construction sections on the Heppler company premises fit together. The extension this year should be the last one, at least hopes Astrid Heppler: "Now construction is over!"
Tobias Kammerer lives and works on the Oberrotenstein near Rottweil-Hausen. In the extensive area that surrounds the former manor house, the artist has created a freely accessible sculpture garden, in which 12 large sculptures made of glass are currently installed. Guided tours through the sculpture garden and the artist's studio are offered.
You can find more about Tobias Kammerer, his art, his works, publications and the guided tours on the Oberrotenstein on the homepage