Virtual Designers Feature: Marterium

A vibrant and ever growing community of digital artists is putting a twist on the way we perceive objects and art. When one thinks about the word “material” something tangible usually comes to mind, there is an immediate response that relates more to our tactile sense rather than our sight. Marterium, a project led by Markus Kanzler is a young active part of this group of virtual explorers putting our common definition of “materiality” and space to a test.

Originally dedicated to psychology his introduction into this world in 2019 was thanks to Instagram, specifically Vasjen Katro’s works in Baughasm. Later on inspired by the works of Roman Bratschi, Rik Oostenbroek, Peter Tarka, and Morten Lasskogen, he decided to put into play his since childhood passion for virtual design. 

With works ranging from gravity defying objects in vibrant colors schemes, to abstract spatial compositions and magic like movements, Kanzler puts on the task of creating daily visuals and sharing them. Some days he is inspired by nature, others driven by thoughts and feelings developed throughout the day, others out of curiosity to play with the idea of new virtual materials and techniques. What drives him is an insatiable curiosity and a need to respond to the gut feeling of creation. 

There is no real intention into what he does; it’s a hedonistic approach towards art and self-expression. His methodology is flexible, as he understands there are parts of the creative process he can’t control completely. An initial idea might evolve towards a completely different composition and color palette, but the intention is always to obtain something beautiful. Creating his work can take from up to 4 hours modeling and editing, to 8 hours plus rendering. 

What excites him the most is the ever-evolving possibilities presented in the digital world, as he says himself “the tools to create art are ever evolving and every year our brushes get an upgrade”. He is a good example of how anyone with interest in this kind of art can be part of the conversation, as with every evolution of the programs and tools they become more accessible to the public. 

As for the future Kanzler points out virtual reality will play a very important role in the evolution of digital arts as it creates a more direct connection and interaction with the real world. He also comments that a market for collectors is also starting to emerge thanks to block chaining and cryptocurrencies. What we do know is that this manifestation of art is rapidly growing, with several brands already recurring to digital artist to create whimsical campaigns for their products. 

Rafa Pérez-Peguero is an architect and designer based in the Caribbean. He is an architecture graduate of the Iberoamerican University of Santo Domingo, as well as a master graduate on Furniture Design of the University of Buenos Aires. He combines his constant curiosity for design, art and everything related to lifestyle with an interest on creative processes and human connections.

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