Richard Mierniczak is an engineer and a self taught painter of German-Polish roots born and raised in Poland and is currently living in Germany since the late eighties. From his childhood until his resettlement in Germany, Richard spent time in a rural area where the surrounding fields, meadows and forests were a playground for him and his contemporaries thus resulting in a grand sensitivity for nature which has deeply influenced his paintings.

Richard moves across an eclectic repertoire of artistic styles and motifs which are joined together only by their incongruence. Whether he captures an inanimate modern concept with a hyperrealism that forces us to double take and see if its not actually a photograph, or if he brings us into a Daliesque, surreal dream world, Richard's paintings make us question what we see. Is the dream more real than the reality? Is there something just beyond the frame that we cannot see? Appreciating his work in context and seeing his paintings next to each other, you are exposed to a variety of ideas and styles that come together to display the dissonance and fullness of our modern lives.

Q. Tell us about some of the highlights of your artistic career, such as memorable shows or publications.
 I don't exhibit so much therefore every exhibition and participation at the art fair is a highlight for me, if there is also good feedback then I am overjoyed.

Q. Do you remember the first art you made? What was it and how old were you? How and when did you first become seriously interested in art?
 Apart from the standard answers, as a child I was always interested in art and was already working with oil paints by the age of 16 or 17. Still today in my studio hangs a picture that I then painted with a glider in flight over my home-town as a motif, at that time I was fascinated by flying and even flew some. I never thought about a profession as an artist, for me art was something natural that belonged to my everyday life besides school or work. It was a creeping process until I became intensively involved in painting and when I rented my first studio is when the number of works increased noticeably.

Q. What have you had to sacrifice for this career?
Difficult question, which my family has had to answer, if anything, all my activities can be called a career.

Q. Tell us about your particular style and how you came to it?

A. I have no particular painting style, that's my problem, when I start a new piece I paint and feel differently. Everything happens intuitively, like my technique, I didn't learn it anywhere. It's exciting because I don't know where the journey will take me.

Q. Who are your biggest influences? Are you inspired by the work of your peers or anyone else in particular?
 The impressionists, especially Claude Monet, the surrealists like Rene Magritte and Giorgio de Chirico, the Russian avant-garde, Kasimir Malevich, Wassily Kandinsky and so many more.

Q. What does your art aim to express?
 I have trouble with this question. I always leave the answer to the observer as each person reacts and interprets differently or perhaps it is because I myself don't know the answer.

Q. Is the artistic life lonely? What do you do to counteract it?
 In the studio yes and I find that this is a good thing. Outside there are lots of like-minded people with whom one can meet and converse.

Q. Apart from art, what do you love doing?
Gardening is as much fun as creating art.

Q. What is your philosophy in matters of art?
I create for myself.

Q. What does 'success' mean to you?
 Success in art is to be noticed.

Q. What advice would you give to the next generation?

A. Do your thing, but be honest.