Janine Kühn - Pictures, Art, Photography Janine Kühn

Janine Kühn

Background Information about Janine Kühn


Photographer and visual artist Janine Kuehn is based in the heart of Berlin where creative currents and the avant-garde converge. Her work is a fascinating fusion of analog and digital processes, a bold dialog between traditional craftsmanship and the unlimited possibilities of modern technology. Her series "Lipstick Studies" marks a turning point in digital art. She experiments with the latest techniques and creates a symbiosis between analogue aesthetics and artificial intelligence.
Kuehn's work is a tribute to the aesthetics and spirit of the 80s and 90s – a time characterized by the eccentricity of pop, the ecstatic energy of disco and the gentle melancholy of bossa nova. She draws inspiration from the vibrant shapes, vibrant colors and unmistakable sound of this era to create artworks that reinterpret these influences in a contemporary context.
The sophisticated interplay of model, make-up, lighting, and backdrops creates transitions that serve as the basis for digital arrangements in which her subjects shine in a completely new light. In this way, she creates beguilingly sensual, independent characters that transcend any context. The women are at the center of her art, the image space is reduced to their gestures and facial expressions maximizing the essence of femininity and making a feminist statement. Kuehn's unique staging creates moments in which her protagonists unfold their individual power independently of external influences. These scenes of digital painting are reminiscent of the pop art aesthetic of Andy Warhol's luminous star portraits – infused with a modern sensibility.
Janine Kuehn's mixed media works explore the approach of synthography and transcend the conventional boundaries of photography, painting, make-up, and hairstyling. Her extensive experience working with actors, dancers, and musicians, as well as in fashion photography, allows her to control every detail of her compositions with precision while at the same time creating sparks of magic that spring from elements of chance. The work thus develops a momentum of its own that overwhelms both viewer and artist. The results are not only visually impressive creations but also profound reflections on the possibilities of art in the digital age, on femininity and the power of individual expression. A vision that is both timeless and deeply relevant, exploring new avenues of artistic expression.


In Between / SpacePlace/Nishni Tagil (RU)
Westquartier/Stuttgart, Lange Nacht der Museen
Photopia / Street Side Gallery / Meet Frida/Hamburg

Current Surface (POP Kudamm/ Gallery Weekend) Meet Frida/Berlin

Sweat Festival / Stuttgart

Come Together / Berlin
Beyond Image, MeetFrida Art Space/Hamburg

WMT / Pop Up Gallery / Hamburg

Beyond Gallery (Pop Up ArtSpace for Gallery Weekend in Berlin)
Remix / Schacher II / Stuttgart-Böblingen
Kunst100 Pop up Gallery / Hamburg
Kunst100 x Gallery Weekend Edition / Berlin
Arts+Music /Kunst100 Festival / Berlin


Thank you so much for the opportunity to speak about your work. First off, can you start by telling us a bit about yourself and your journey to photography?

I’ve been drawing faces since I was a child. I am fascinated by faces and the internal worlds and dreams they represent. There was always a feeling that I wanted to get all the images from my mind into the physical world somehow. To capture and/or create images that are truly beautiful to me and that tell a story or speak to me in a way. Photography was a logical step to capture the people, faces and moments around me and it is obviously a big part of my process. But incorporating and combining photography with different forms of art and technology is where ideas and pictures truly come to life for me.

Through your interest in pop-art and collaborations with fashion and other artists such as makeup artists, actors, and musicians, you must have so many impulses while you work. What is for you the most significant aspect of navigating and working with all these different disciplines and inspirations?

Creating with and for other artists, actors or musicians is always especially exciting to me. I sort of give myself the challenge to make it unique and exciting every time: from the location, to the style, colors, props to hair and makeup (which I also do myself as a trained make-up artist and hair stylist).

I try to meet the person I work with wherever they might be on their personal creative journey and figure out what they currently want to express and what feels true to their nature and story, while making it look and feel like a step into their future. This is also where digital image editing shines as a tool. It helps to create results that go beyond just photography and to get into places that are less bound by physical or worldly restrictions.

You transport us in completely new, fantastical worlds with your works which are often in a grey area between photography and digital art with women as the main subject. Maybe difficult to answer, but how would you describe your own art? How did you develop your personal artistic voice over the years? What would you like to relay to your viewers with your art, especially in ‘lipstick studies’?

I started my journey with basically nothing and am completely self-taught. It was always a challenge to make these beautiful and otherworldly images I had in my mind come to life, with the limited resources available to me. But it taught me the importance of improvisation and adapting to every new project and concept in my own unique way.
Even with better equipment and technology that is improving at an almost scary rate, this mindset has stuck with me. I think it might be part of why I find it hard to define my style or how it changes over time, since every project feels so unique and different to me. There are no messages in my work beyond the one that you want to see or feel while experiencing it. I have an always moving, evolving and dreamlike flow of „beauty" in my mind, that I am trying to somehow capture and give a place in reality. Every piece of my work is just the result of chasing that.

Now you’re at LUMAS and are presenting us with six digital works. How did the series ‘lipstick studies’ come about? What is your relationship to these women in the pictures and the digital processes that you use?

Lipstick Studies is basically an amalgamation of different memories and ideas that are living rent free in my head, combined with current inspirations. Old ripped up movie posters in Thessaloniki. Grainy yet glamorous Vogue advertisements I used to see as a kid, Warhol prints of Marilyn Monroe hanging above my stepdads record player. But also concepts and questions about female beauty standards, empowerment and ferocity. Women putting on lipstick as warpaint and enhancing and using their beauty on their own terms. Or being a beautiful princess in a castle of dreams, hopelessly in love? The women in the images are not personalities or even real people. They won’t look at you in a smoky bar or lead a march or star in a silver screen blockbuster. They are just fleeting moments and ideas of femininity and beauty that made me stop in my tracks and capture them. Because they spoke to me in some nebulous way.