Apr 14, 2012

31-year-old Jasmin Siddiqui lives in Heidelberg and describes herself as a graphic designer. Her modesty prevents her from styling herself as an artist. But in fact, she is exactly that.
34-year-old Falk Lehmann lives in Munich. He is similarly humble, and can be accurately described as an artist as well.

Both have a background in graffiti and street art, but have since become established figures in the world of contemporary art, where they retain their pseudonyms. Falk is still known as Akut, while Jasmin remains Hera. Together, they are Herakut. Combining as perfectly as their names are their opposing styles and tastes.

Hera and Akut believe they were destined to work together. They first met in 2004, while painting a large mural in Spain. They struck up a friendship on the scaffolding and have been inseparable since. Apart from murals, Herakut exhibit their realistically fictional images in galleries worldwide. One show chases the next: Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York, London, Bristol and… Schmalkalden.

The small town, described as a “vacation resort in the Green Heart of Germany,” is where Akut grew up, in a house his grandparents rebuilt by hand after the Second World War. It is still the family´s home today. There is a small indoor pond teeming with goldfish, and on the walls, portraits of children and Herakut’s first paintings.

The duo has created a studio on the ground floor of this house, splendidly isolated from the distractions of urban life. Hera and Akut begin their day in the kitchen, with a cup of coffee and the local paper. After reading the horoscopes, they choose one forecast to be the motto of the day, then solve a crossword puzzle before discussing their work strategy and starting their session.

We joined Herakut in Schmalkalden to discuss their sources of inspiration, urban life, and injustice.

Read the full interview in the printed issue of Wertical.

Release: 2014.

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