Michelangelo of the Eifel
A bird man in the sky. Ivy on the wall: (picture left): The artist Rainer Maria Latzke painted the entrance hall of his 37-room castle. “Chateau Thal” in the Belgian Kettenis.
Rainer Latzke manages to trick the human eye. The student of Joseph Beuys portrays the wide world on walls. And not only millionaires pay a lot of money for this. Under an arch a golden Buddha is enthroned in a niche. One foot high made of gold, decorated with sparkling diamonds. A masterpiece. You have to touch it. But the hand bounces back before the niche, fooled by Rainer Maria Latzke. The arch, the niche, the Buddha: nothing is real. Only the wall. Because where Latzke has been you can no longer trust your eyes.
The illusion is the lucrative business of the 38 year old artist. His mural painting turned the son of an art professor into a millionaire. His career: studies under Joseph Beuys at the Düsseldorf Academy of Fine Arts, then teacher, then graphic artist and cartoonist. During a stay in Italy Latzke discovered what he was meant to do: “I saw the frescos of Michelangelo and knew that’s what I’m meant to do”.
1981 the first order: Murals for an Italian restaurant. The pay: Free Pizzas.
Today the Michelangelo of our times gets paid in 6 figured numbers. Wealthy entrepreneurs, sheiks and managers are his clientele. Latzke fulfils his own dreams in his Belgian 37-room castle. Like in a mirror cabinet the visitor wanders through the rooms… (read more)