Sanders Steins‘ paintings and collages are a damning indictment of the collapse of industry in Western Europe and the destruction of the environment. In other words a failure of capitalism and the free market economy to create a better and fairer life for everyone. Having grown up in an industrial heartland that has since collapsed Steins work looks to the old and new, the past and future to question technology, modernization and globalization and which way we should turn to now if we are to make the world a better place.
His images are a real mix up of found images, text, printing, painting and graffiti and while the subject of his work is serious in its intent he still manages to imbue some humour into his compositions. Here’s what he has to say about his ideas:
Most factories in the Ruhrgebiet have been pulled down and a lot of former industrial terrains have been cleaned up and/or have had a change of use. It shows that we, as human beings, continuously build, demolish and rebuild, but still the world is none the better for it. New threats such as overpopulation and the blurring of traditional standards and values through the emergence of the internet are seriously endangering our habitats and have a fundamental influence on life here on earth. This theme plays a crucial role in most of my art. Where for me it started with admiration for all those huge factories and smoking chimneys there now is the realization that mankind should use its knowledge much more to ensure an enjoyable future on this planet for the next generations.
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