Andreas von Chrzanowski aka CASE, is a German graffiti artist known for his incredibly life-like graffiti based on the representation of body shapes and photo-realistic portraits sprayed on the sides on buildings all across Europe. He is one of the four members of the “Maclaim Crew”, which was founded in 2000 and is considered as pioneers in photo-realistic representation within the graffiti scene.
The story begins in 1999 when Akut (the male half of German duo, Herakut) Case, and Rusk were working on common projects and decided to collaborate. Two years later, Tasso came along and the “Maclaim” crew was formed. This group of young talented artists went on to build a name for themselves as creators of some of the best photo-realistic graffiti in the world today.
Born in 1979 and raised in East Germany, Case achieved his Diploma in Art Restoration and Conservation from Erfurt University Of Applied Sciences. Already in 1995 Case began painting with spray cans, and he uses this medium to make photorealistic images of body forms and portraits. Based on the graffitti style, Case transports photo images into a more personal, painted version. He rejects the mass-produced century we live in and always tries to make a new hand-painted version, impossible to copy, unique and special.
Case’s artistry usually includes people or the human body. He focuses on the body which he abstracts from its human origin to give way for narrative, monstrous, animalistic or mythic elements. He removes them from their normal environments, changes them, and then displays them within a new context, one that has also been modified. The usual ideal of beauty is replaced by bizarre-controversial characteristics, vexing but simultaneously fascinating. Also the world of emotions is traced perpetually. Uncertainty, melancholy and the constant fight of being a human are broached as the issue. The figurative subjects impress by their perfect execution and their excellent mixture of pictorial pureness and high narrative value. This enables him to replace the traditional idea of what beauty represents by controversial, grotesque images; these create nothing less than a very unique form of fascination for the beholder.
“The theme throughout is ´the sound of change´ It speaks for itself really.”
One of the most poignant aspects common to all of Case’s works is the texture of the surfaces he uses. They are painted on a background that is made from pieces of cardboard of various sizes. Most of the cardboard comes from the packaging of the spray paint cans and they are held together with glue, staples and tape. Sometimes bits and pieces of wood are also glued onto the surface, such that a bumpy, one-of-a-kind surface appears. This structure is diametrically opposed to typically overblown, perfectionist images and it gives Case’s works their unique character.
Case is one of the most innovative young artists making waves in contemporary German and international art. Not only his pieces are totally unique in subject matter and his technique one of the most extraordinary to be found, he prefaces each work by setting up an intense photo shoot. He painted walls of Los Angeles, Mexico, New York, Canary Island, Seville, Sofia, Charlaroi, London, Sheffield, Ronneby, Wroclaw, Milano, Moscow… Since 2008 he is doing solo works and projects.
Andreas von Chrzanowski aka CASE lives and works in Frankfurt, Germany.