Idlebeats (China)

Idlebeats (China)

Gregor Koerting is originaly from Dresden in Germany but we will not classify him as german because he is now working with his friend Nini from Nanjing. This is, one of, the reason I am so glad to welcome Idlebeats on the site. It is the best evidence that Rock Poster Art has spread, really, all over the world. If you add to that the fact that chinese caligraphy give really a wonderful "exotic" touch to the posters, you will definitly understand why this interview means so much to me

Hello, of course as every Crewk interview, first question: what are we listening to when we come to visit you?

It just depends, who of both of us can enforce his favorite that day. Wether The Knife or Watain, both are from Sweden. If we´re able to come to a compromise you have to stand Joy Division, Wire, Arbouratum, David Bowie or anything weird.

Can you tell us more about yourself, who are you, where are you from, what do you do?

I´m from Dresden which is far south-east of Germany. Nini is from Nanjing, a city sits on the east coast of China, near by Shanghai. We have a silkscreenstudio in the center of Shanghai where we create and print our graphic artworks and gigposters for indie-concerts worldwide. But we´re also printing other artists works, providing workshops and making customized illustrations.

When did you start drawing?

Well, this is hard to tell. I began to draw when i was three years old just like all the other kids of this age. However i obsessed about it a bit more.

I think the interest for drawing does´nt come by just doing it. It has more to do with what you see and the necessity to convey it to yourself. During my childhood i´ve particularly contemplate artworks and illustration of the others. Permanently i got my nose stucked into my children books or was sighting the album covers of my parents record collection.

Drawing could (and still can) make me escape of the world around me and make me able to create my own one. Mostly i was drawing brutal battles between knights, devils and tanks. Later on as a teenager i started to do grafitti what has make me aware that i also can give an expression to other people instead of just doing my own crap. But basically i miss my childish mind of the old days sometimes. Just to do without thinking how others will like it.

Did you follow any course or did you improve by drawing in the margins of your schoolbooks?

The latter.

Today are you living from your art, or do you do something else for a living ?

Basically we can have a modest life only with doing illustrations. What also means we just have to serve our skills for other ideas. This is basically not a problem, i think. Everything can be interesting if you´re getting yourself into it right. But there are limits of course. For instance i would never draw a flyer for the KKK or shit like that.

Are you collaborating with magazines/fanzines, regularly?

Yes we do. There are different book projects we were doing the illustrations for, but also for underground comic fanzines or bigger magazines like ELLE.

Where does your influence come from? Is there any artists/graphists you particularly like, what are your influences?

This is related to the answer of the third question. I got a lot of influence by illustrations i´ve seen in the past. Especially of Werner Klemke or Karl Schrader. I´m impressed of old paintings of Grunewald and Fra Angelico also the print art of William Blake. Rockposterwise i would exemplify Victor Moscoso and Gunther Kieser as those whom gave me loads of inspiration.

What are the principal steps in your work ?

This is kinda different. Mostly i start with a sketch which i improve more and more on the light table. Sometimes a first quick drawing says all. But we´re also trying alternate ways by using photographs or clay. The coloring we´re doing on Photoshop or by hand with watercolors.

Do you do everything by hand or on computer?

As already mentioned. If the computer helps you to get the goal better, easier and faster, of course we´re not refusing technology. The separation of the layers for a print we´re doing generally on computer.

How long does it take you to do a poster?

Including the printing, around one week.

You have a very distinctive style, are you doing only what you feel like or if tomorrow somebody asks you an oil painting with horses running out of water with a sunset backdrop, is it a problem or are you up for it ?

I defenitely don´t have any problems to do horses or dolphins infront of a sunrise. This should be fun. Anyway you´re learning with every project.

For which band have you already worked for?

Okay, till now we did Crystal Stilts, Deer Tick, Melvins, Jucifer, Wooden Shjips, Handsome Furs and lots more. Also amazing chinese bands like Snapline and Duck fight Goose.

For which band would you love to work?

The Knife and Watain

Do you choose the artists yourself?

Sometimes. But we´re also receiving requests by artists or promoters betimes.

What is the most difficult part in designing a poster?

I would say, the entire arrangement is making a poster. The lettering you´re doing and if the motif is significant enough to make it catchy on the first glance. Sometimes i come up with an sensational idea but later on i find out that it does´nt work as a poster.

Do you think you are part of a "Graphic Scene", if so who else ?

We have lots of great minds in Shanghai concerning graphic art(comics, design, video art, illustration): Long Hua, Kim Laughton, Twoqee, Cheeri Wang...

A bit of self-promotion, take advantage of it, it's free, where can we see your work , on the web or in real life?

First of all visit There are all further informations and most of the prints we did last years.

The best praise you received lately?

"You have a very distinctive style."

What can we wish you for the future?

That i´m occasionally allowed to play Black Metal at the studio.

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