Artist Patrick Rieve (45) lives in the district Mülheim. He produces and sells zines; handy little books with experimental sketches and texts published in small editions. For diversion, he likes to be in the country, where he does another, quite different job.
„When you open a zine, you never know what’s expecting you. There are so many different formats, materials and bindings – it’s fascinating. For example: Among the many books Mark Pawson produces, there’s a zine, made of leftover paper from his other work. Visually as well as haptically it is most interesting. Yes, the scene is a bit anarchic, there is some weird stuff. This is where innovation takes place. Some commercially successful comics have started out as zines.
In the nineties I started producing own zines. One was a dark comic set in a city full of smog. I distributed them among the crowds of punk-concerts in Cologne. Fugazi or Bad Brains – those were typical bands with a matching audience.
I either sold or swapped the zines. Thus I started collecting the work of other artists as well. I own several thousand pieces now. My collection is called „St. Patrick’s Zine Library“ and I show it at fairs such as Cologne Art Book Fair regularly. The scene is very vital. Most often when I publish something, I receive something in return. Communication is what zines are all about to me. Somebody once asked me, how you draw comics. We chatted a little and one year later he sent me his first piece of work.
As a librarian as well as an artist, I am very exact. I observe precisely and I like to draw in ligne claire style. I am interested in architecture, hence I like to draw rooms and document how people change interiors. In a long-term-study I used to draw my own room in a shared flat every two weeks or so, documenting all the objects that have changed their position in the meantime.
When I finished my studies in Hamburg, I moved to Cologne-Mülheim for the sake of love. This fountain, I am sitting on, is the most crazy fountain of Cologne to me. I like the anchor particularly. Down the street, there is the bar Limes. They even have beer from Hamburg on tap. I live here for ten years now and I am looking forward to the next ten years. Mülheim is changing, you can tell that. When shops are being empty, they are not easily relet. Then artists and designers benefit from low rents.
I like to be fully in control of my art, that’s why I publish myself. This kind of autonomy is also an aspect of my other job. I take care of orchards in the vicinity of Cologne. From part of the apples that I harvest, a juice is made. So that’s a product, I contribute to a lot. There are some old styles among the types of apples and via me they are used and natural diversity is being protected.”
Work of Patrick Rieve is on display until 21st of October at Artothek.