Niklas Jeroch

Niklas Jeroch: “Quirky, futuristic, colorful & cute”

Architerior interviewed Berlin based artist Niklas Jeroch who shared his multifaceted art story. From academic to hands on involvement in the art world, Niklas has shaped his own path by learning from various aspects of art history, ancient and contemporary alike. He feels that art holds the deep hidden knowledge of what makes us human and not just consumers. Viewers need to reflect and make up their own minds of what the artwork they are experiencing means.

Niklas shared his thoughts around his own work, but also on how creatives in general might experience the art market at this time. In this interview, Niklas delves into the challenges and possibilities that arise when artists seek to strike a balance between individuality, consistency, self-discovery, and meeting market demands. To him, being able to grow as a human and to learn more about this world through your own creation while connecting with others, that is what makes the role of an artist so special.

Sculpture by Niklas Jeroch

How did you find your way into art?

I have always been a creative kid. I always drew and painted. I made my own clothes as a teenager, did street art in a small collective in my hometown, while being influenced through an amazing art museum there too (Kunsthalle Bielefeld). I studied art history (Bachelor degree in 2014) and archaeology (Bachelor degree in 2017) at the university of Leipzig, Germany. But in fine arts I am self taught.

At the beginning of my studies I was overwhelmed about how much I can still learn about anything art related. As a coping mechanism, I started painting on canvas, while continuing my studies about European Christian iconography, architecture and Dutch oil paintings from the 17th century. In 2013 I met a woman from the art school that is big in Leipzig. She said “if you do art, you need to exhibit it”. Then, after I finished my degree in art history, I had my first exhibition in November 2014. I sold all my works and was completely overwhelmed by the power art can have. I continued painting for years, while studying archaeology. On the side I worked in galleries and museums to be in contact with what I studied and I learned more and more about contemporary art in that time than in all my studies in the years before combined.

In 2017 I moved to Berlin, finished my archaeology degree and worked for an art publishing house in part time. I constantly had shows happening, but the low payment and the time I spent in my side jobs made me frustrated about the fact that I don’t have enough time for my own creation. So then in Feb 2020 I decided to become a freelance artist. And now, 4 years later, I am happier than ever that I made that step and never looked back.

Artist interview Niklas Jeroch & Architerior
Niklas Jeroch – Photo by @panchoassoluto

Did education shape your journey as an artist?

Yes, definitely. It helped me figure things out and to meet the right people that guide you and help you out in moments of self doubt.

What techniques do you use?

My practice is always a mix of handmade vs. computer made processes. One of them is the starting point and I’ll continue with the other to finalize an artwork. It is mainly painting, sculpting and lasering 3D-printing.

How would you define your art style?

Quirky, futuristic, colorful and cute.

Contemporary art interview with Niklas Jeroch on Architerior
Niklas Jeroch

Which artists or art styles have inspired you?

Cy Twombly, Hildegard von Bingen, Hajime Sorayama, Masamune Shirow, Yoko Ono, Eleftherios Kastrinakis, and everything that my friends make.

Is there something in particular that you wish to convey to the viewer through your work?

I want people to take their time again with understanding an artwork and therefore understanding themselves and others. I want people to wonder and NOT finding an answer right away. Humans need food for thought. Art is about reflection of the topic the artist is working on, the emotions that are happening while experiencing art, but especially it is about a personal and individual internal response to the world. And in the Anthropocene it is less and less normal to think and feel and to be connected on a human level. So I want to give that back. Deep hidden knowledge of what makes us human and not just consumers.

Contemporary art - Berlin artist Niklas Jeroch (Architerior interview)

What are you working on right now?

I am working on a new series of sculptures. I wanted to go back into sculpting by hand, instead of sculpting in a computer program. So this year is more about playfulness and clay.

How has Covid-19 affected you as an artist?

Covid-19 has effected every creative in the world. Before, creatives were in a difficult position. During Covid, most of them had to leave their profession and now 4 years later the world pretends like nothing happened while creatives suffer more than ever before, due to inflation and the power of the art market. People are being extremely careless about supporting creatives in all fields. Thanks to capitalism and boomer politics.

Inspiration is important when creating, where do you find inspiration?

I think as every artist, I get inspired by the most random things. For my paintings it often had been the lacquer on bikes in the past years. Generally it can be anime, Sci-Fi, conversations… literally anything. Because I am self taught, I don’t need to follow any traditional ways of making art. I do what I want and when I want to do it. Of course it is not easy to sell everything all the time, because people want consistency. But I sometimes make things only once and therefore allow myself the freedom of creating and following a thought that needs to be realized into something physical/digital.

Check out more artist interviews on Architerior

Is there any artwork that you’ve created that is extra significant to you?

All artworks are important to me, because they paved the way of what I am creating nowadays. But once I decided an artwork is done, I often forget about it, because I am very much a process artist. Meaning, the process of creating gives me the biggest joy and high. There are some paintings, sculptures and videos I did in the past that I am still obsessed with, because of the colors that I used or simply that I came up with them.

How do you define “good” art?

I think everyone has their own definition of what is good art. In my case, I want to see quality. Quality of thought, concept and execution. If you just put one brush stroke on a canvas, I don’t think that it is relevant anymore. Even though there was a time where this was an extreme act and I appreciate that this paved a way for young creatives nowadays.

3D printed vases by Artworks by Niklas Jeroch
Vases by Berlin based artist Niklas Jeroch

What are the best things about being an artist?

Being able to grow as a human and to learn more about this world through your own creation while connecting with others.

What are the worst things about being an artist?

The art market, price dumping of artworks, under payment in general, exploitation of the workers in any cultural field, lack of contracts in favor of the artists, a system that allows the artists to actually be able to live from their work and the lack of interest of any society in this world about what art making really is, means and should cost.

Are there any special moments in your art career that you’d like to share – moments that perhaps brought you forward, gave you clarity or changed you?

There are so many constantly that I can narrow it down to: connecting with others.

Artworks by Niklas Jeroch
Artworks by Niklas Jeroch

What does it mean to you to be able to work with art?

It is the greatest gift to me to have decided to take the precarious road and just exist authentically in what I want to share with the world.

In ten years time, where do you see yourself and your creative work?

I am curating exhibitions myself since 2021 with a focus on queer, Flinta, BIPOC artists. Ideally I have my own exhibition space and created Europe’s first creative union trade.

If you could go back to the beginning of your art career, what advise would you give yourself?

Be even more patient. Good things will come. And: live your authentic self even more and don’t give a fuck.

Check out the Instagram of Niklas Jeroch and Architerior. Also, visit for more.